Here's how a military interpreter made it from danger in Afghanistan to safety in the US

Player utilities

Listen to the story.

Marco Werman: Now, one more story about the legacy of 9/11 and the wars that have followed. Mohammad Usafi: My full name is Mohammad Usafi. From 2008, I started working with the Marines. Werman: Mohammad paid a steep price for serving as an interpreter for US forces in Afghanistan. Usafi: The Taliban found out that I was working with Americans and helping them. They came to my dad and they took him. They tortured him and they killed him and they threw him into the water. Werman: Mohammad's family begged him to quit. Eventually, he did and went home to Kandahar. But the Taliban thought he was still working for the Americans. Usafi: So what they did, they kidnapped my little brother and they sent me a ransom letter, that I have to pay them $35,000. If I don't pay that, they will kill my little brother and put him next to my dad's grave. Werman: Mohammad paid the ransom and his brother was released. At that point, Mohammad decided he and his family had to get out of Afghanistan. They moved to Pakistan and went into hiding. Mohammad asked one of the Marines he worked with, a close friend now, to help him get a US visa. Then he waited. And he waited. Usafi: I was waiting for 3 years. Finally, I got my visa. So, I got here to the United States on January 21st of 2014. I came here to San Francisco. I knew that Adrian was waiting for me outside, the Marine captain who I used to work with. He was waiting for me - not just him. There was a group of people, like 20-25 people there and Adrian was telling me that usually when the military personnel come back from deployment, usually their family members or their friends come and say thanks for what they've done. So, they did the same thing for me. They're still helping me, they're still trying to help my family, trying to bring them here over to the States. So, all those people that tried to help me, now they're helping my family. I'm here physically but I'm not here mentally because I'm always thinking about them, about my family. Werman: Mohammad Usafi, a former interpreter for American forces in Afghanistan, now living here in the US.