01 June 2008

Death in an M1114

From the Soldier side: I've mentioned that a friend of mine was killed in Iraq in Jun 2005. Roberto was a good man and I still get a little sad thinking about him. If you can't recall, Roberto was killed when an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) hit his Hummer in Baghdad. It was one of the fancy perpetrator types that cut through the armor plating like it was butter.
Big J was the gunner on that trip, in Roberto's truck. Big J got medavaced out of Iraq before I ever had a chance to talk to him to find out what the hell happened. Big J went to Walter Reed Hospital and even got a visit from Bush. It took me a while, but I was able to get a hold of Big J while I was still in Iraq. He felt responsible for the truck getting hit since he was the gunner and he was supposed to watch out for all threats.
The sneaky insurgentassholes hid the IED so nobody would have seen it. It was not Big J's fault. I e-mailed him and made sure he knew he was a hero and the best goddamngunner in Iraq as far as I felt. Big J is still a hero in my book and he will aways be.
I had not seen Big J until last year when our National Guard unit went to Camp XXX for training. We had a few minutes to sit and talk on a bus ride. I told Big J's new team leader (who had not been deployed yet) that he was a hero. Everyone in listening distance stopped to listen to what I had to say. (I made Big J blush a little) I told how he did the "gunners dance" when he was on convoy and kept all evil persons away from the convoy with his magic.
I told how he stripped his machine gun down every night and cleaned and lubed it to make sure it would work (like I taught him) and how he felt every person riding on his convoy was his duty to protect. He was the absolute BEST gunner I ever rode with.
Later Big J told me about the day their truck was hit. That is a good story....I'll tell you all about what he told me...
To be Cont...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are right, D. this was great! Can't wait to hear more about your friend.