Wednesday, September 22, 2004

"Why I Blog"... continued

Yesterday we had this post. Today comes the 1st person recount. It's powerful! I feel safer and am in awe. Thank you to the Wife of this Warrior for permission of reproducing here, and thank you to the author for keeping us appraised of reality. God Speed!

Hello all,

It has been a rough week for (deleted) company. We lost two of our friends in an ambush on (deleted). Four more were wounded, including one of my good friends from
the Q course, who had to undergo surgery to have a bullet removed from his arm. One of the guys died of his wounds after an RPG round struck the side of his vehicle, blowing off his arm and most of his leg. That same RPG round disabled the vehicle he was riding in, forcing the team (deleted) to stay in the killzone while trying to recover the wounded from the destroyed truck. The other man was shot in the head after driving his truck forward to help. My team (deleted), and (deleted) were called in to secure the area and prevent any further engagement by the enemy still in the area. It is amazing that one minute I am reading a book and
ten minutes later I am on a helicopter flying in to a hot LZ. Upon arrival we began sending out defensive patrols and called in airstikes on every enemy we could find. We watched with grim satisfaction as the attack helicopters and A-10's ran the Al Qaida fighters down without mercy. They would run into houses, abandoned once the fighting began, and the A-10 would drop 500lb bombs on them, and strafe them with their 30mm chain guns. There were bodies in the hills, along with cartridge casings from every weapon imaginable, and lingering fires from the incendiary rounds that the Huey Cobras shoot. We wound up having to spend the night at almost 9000ft alt. Without any cold weather clothing at all. All we brought to the fight was Food, water and ammo. Later that night we were awakened by the wild dogs fighting
over their the corpses. We stayed in the area until midmorning. On the way down the mountain I went over to see one of the bodies left over from the fighting of the previous day, and despite the horrible condition it was in, I felt nothing. This same man, blackened where a grenade had hit the tree next to him, killing him and then setting him on fire, had killed my comrades. I could only look at him and see the blood stained wreckage of the Humvee - blood everywhere in the seats and dash and
down the side. I decided I didn't care about him, and went to sit down to wait for the chopper to come get us. We sent one representative from our team to the memorial service in Bagram today, because we still have a job to do,training the Afghan military to fight for their own freedom without us. The mission doesn't stop, even when people die. I can only hope that God can give some measure of peace to their families and children. I know he can. I am proud that I am a part of something bigger than myself, and that even though I will be nameless to these people, my hard work will enable them to live rich and fulfilling lives. I miss my family tremendously and want nothing more than to hold my daughter. That time is coming,

I wrote this letter in as much detail as I can because I don't want your imaginations to run wild with rumors and speculation. I would rather you just know the facts. And besides sometimes I feel better after I write my feelings out. If this letter causes you to be more worried than you were before, I apologize -
Just pray in a way that is proportional to your concern. I love what I do, and will continue to, as long as I feel I am serving a purpose that is good and just. As
long as there is an enemy out there who wants to kill me and my family with a hijacked airliner, or anthrax, or dirty bombs, I will do everything my country asks
me to in order to keep the war anywhere but home.
Love, (deleted)