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My soldier’s lucky Green Zone truck

June 4, 2014

We hugged and bid farewell to our soldier son as he shipped out to join up with his 32nd Division shipping out from Wisconsin. He was bound for Texas for shortened orientation since he was deemed combat ready. He did get to practice escaping out of a bombed Humvee as part of necessary training before shipping out. This was start of 2009 for our family.

He got adopted by some combat veterans at base and subjected to some rowdy off base escapades before shipping out. Baghdad used to be a far away place until the USA decided to keep us safe at home by sending troops far away. Like a lot of young enlisted (19 years old), Marc volunteered to protect our nation since the 9/11/2001 attack on the USA. I never thought the battles would still be going in 2008 when he enlisted.

Marc is very friendly and makes a lot of friends. He loved scouting, and the high adventure camps of mountain climbing and canoe. He was not eager to go to Iraq, but he did go and as most things went in 100%. He took his laptop to Skype home, take on line college courses, and his running shoes. He loves to run. His assignment was at Green Zone headquarters administrative staff for a Colonel. The Colonel liked to run.

7 days of 12 hours was the norm, and sometimes more hours. Army life is not for weak or soft folks.

There was a Taliban suicide bomber who tried to kill a few at Green Zone. It was an old Japanese pick up truck. The bomb did not explode, but the Taliban did get to die as he wished. Most of us in USA are wise guys. They kept the truck to run errands. (Explosives were removed.)

Marc never drove a stick shift. He got to learn how to drive a Taliban suicide bomber truck. Then he would take the ride to the Baghdad airport to deliver or pick up military visitors for Green Zone. The truck was less of a target than a Humvee, and Marc had fun with a junky truck.

The Green Zone was heavily guarded but it was not 100% safe. Just after Marc’s tour of duty was done, one of his buddies died with a RPG shot into their base tower.

Marc was glad to do stuff to break up the routine of 100 degree days and cold desert nights. Truck errands, volunteering to guard prisoners to get out of the office, and a lot of running. He was in top finishers of a crazy run through obstacles and then target practice. It was called “The Desert Cup” and I think it was red Solo cup.

Anyway, I was just thinking of his luck after seeing more news about this Bergdahl soldier. Marc never walked away. I am proud of him and his buddies who protect us. We need military leadership to instill the same attitude in our young 19 year old enlisted military today.

Baghdad "fun" in army

Baghdad “fun” in army

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