(TAMPA, Fla.) — A member of the elite team that killed Osama bin Laden donated a knife he carried on the historic raid to a charity auction recently, raising $35,400 for the family of another Navy SEAL who perished in a training accident in March.
Mark Owen, the pseudonymous author of No Easy Day, which detailed the bin Laden mission, told ABC News he was approached by a friend who was setting up the auction and volunteered to part with the combat knife he’s carried with him on missions for over eight years.
“If there was something I could do, I wanted to be involved,” the former SEAL Team Six member said.
The auction in all raised more than $75,000 for several special operations charities, but the proceeds from the knife sale will specifically go the family of Brett “Shady” Shadle, according to Matthew Griffin, a former Army Ranger who helped organized the event. Shadle, who served in SEAL Team Six with Owen, was killed in late March in a training accident in Arizona.
Owen’s knife, a folding Emerson knife that Owen said was his secondary blade, was one of several items in the charity put on by The Macalan Group along with Combat Flip Flops and Intelligent Waves IW simultaneously online and at the Special Operations Forces Industry Conference and Exhibition (SOFIC) hosted this week in Tampa, Fla. The auction began May 1, exactly two years after President Obama announced the death of the al Qaeda leader.
Griffin, the co-founder of Combat Flip Flops, told ABC News that when the bids for the knife jumped in the last minutes of the auction, the audience at SOFIC was ecstatic.
“People were cheering, folks were in tears,” he said.
Griffin said he and the other organizers threw the auction together in just a couple weeks and sought out people like Owen willing to donate items. Since there was no overhead, Griffin said 100 percent of the proceeds will go to the special operations charities.
The winning bidder for the knife has not been identified, but will also be presented with a letter of certification from Owen.
Click the links below to find out more about the organizations Griffin said were supported in the auction:
To learn more about Combat Flip Flops and its work in Afghanistan, click here.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Elise Labott, Kevin Liptak and Patrick Oppmann, CNN
Julia Horowitz, CNN
Jennifer Graham, Deseret News