When the shooting was over, Maxwell's body turned up lifeless outside the guesthouse. Four other UN employees were also found dead, including fellow guard Laurance Mafful. At least two of those dead were election monitors. Nine people were wounded.

On television, the Afghan people heard a man who said he was a Taliban spokesman claim credit for the attacks. An Afghan soldier was quoted as saying he had killed an Arab terrorist, whom some would later think was Louis Maxwell.

Paul O'Hanlon, a UN security specialist, told London's Daily Mail that Maxwell "engaged numerous attackers inside the guesthouse for a considerable period of time. He conserved his ammunition. He was lucid. If he hadn't done his job, the attackers would have pursued [the monitors] and we'd have had a line of bodies."

Aijalon Muhammad grieves for her lost brother.
C. Stiles
Aijalon Muhammad grieves for her lost brother.


View our Louis Maxwell slide show.

On November 5, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon also addressed Maxwell's heroism in a speech before the general assembly. He announced that half the UN staff in the country — about 600 people — would be withdrawn because of safety concerns, and he railed against Afghan security forces for taking too long to appear.

Two days later, Maxwell was buried at Vista Memorial Gardens on Red Road. Trumpeters from his old band played a fanfare. Pastor Joy Jackson, a family friend and mentor, gave the eulogy. "Mission Accomplished" was her theme.

Jackson was a positive and mighty pillar of strength that day. But soon it would emerge that Maxwell was likely killed by Karzai's forces. Theories would surface, some with substantial evidence: Soldiers murdered him to steal his gun. Karzai ordered the attack to seek revenge for the corruption claims. Maxwell was shot from afar by poorly trained officers who thought he was a terrorist.

And the United Nations would probe his death but refuse to release the report detailing that probe. The FBI would also become involved. Maxwell's relatives have received many visits and details, but so far they aren't satisfied.

"It's beyond words what this family has been through," Pastor Jackson says. "You try to trust, but you don't know whom to believe. You don't know who's covering up or why."

Next week: Afghan President Hamid Karzai likely had Louis Maxwell killed.

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