Sunday, September 24, 2006

Soldier Wounded

I wish today's update was a little lighter than it is.

I was walking back from my hootch this afternoon after lunch when the sirens started. So, being the bright boy I am, I continued to walk to our Area of Operations. After a while the loudspeakers announced that we were still under Red Alert and should seek shelter. So, I continued to walk to our area (I had purposely left my humvee back at the office and walked to lunch with one of our Staff Officers).

When I arrived at the TOC (Tactical Operations Center) I was told that we had a casualty. I immediately jumped in my humvee and headed to the hospital. I cannot, and will not, divulge any information about the soldier. I can tell you this; he is fine, and will be fine. I arrived at the emergency room about the same time he did and stayed with him while they cleaned, flushed and packed his wound. He will spend the night in the hospital and be released Sunday or Monday. My Chaplain Assistant went back to the soldier's hootch to pick up some clothes for him. We also made arrangements for a satellite phone so he could call his parents and let them know he was okay.

Seeing all the other patients, including a 16 year-old Iraqi boy (same age as my oldest son) with a head wound brought the war even closer to me. It is easy to get complacent here. We have showers and latrines, access to computers and email, halfway decent food, and plenty of recreational activities should we ever get time to avail ourselves of them. The message here is simple: we are at war. Young men and women are dying. If you are not already, lift up a prayer for these guys and gals, and for the innocent civilians that are killed and wounded.

I'm proud to be here with folks like this soldier, who barely flinched when being treated and kept his military bearing in extraordinary circumstances. It is a honor to be able to serve soldiers like him

God Bless,



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