My team and I were waiting for our “taxi ride” back to Baghdad, Iraq. (Do I really need to put “Iraq” after the city of Baghdad?) Our taxi for this trip was 2 Army Blackhawk helicopters. We were leaving that place after a mission was over…and we were very happy to get the heck out of there.
As I always did when we were flying somewhere, I’d go to flight ops and tell them who we were and they’d look on a list and see if our travel agent had done his or her job and made the proper reservation…. “yep, you’re on the list. Your flight should be landing in about 20 minutes, so stay close, we’ll yell when the birds are inbound.” The flight ops sergeant told me.
I left flight ops and walked over to where my team and our terp were waiting. Going back to Baghdad would mean we’d get a day or two off, and have mail waiting for us…so my guys were eager to go.
After waiting 15 minutes… we saw 2 Black Hawks inbound. My assistant team leader pointed to them and we started to pick up our packs and bags. (I always kept some of my sensitive gear with me, just in case…so I’d never loose it.) As the birds were getting closer, I had to remind my guys to wait for them to land as they were really eager to get on and go.
These 2 birds looked different as they got closer. They were Medivac Choppers. The ones the Army Medics (Docs) flew on. They were not landing on the normal side of the flight line, but landed next to the base hospital. As they touched down…. I saw 4 soldiers rush over with 2 gurneys.
One of my guys started to bitch about how he thought those were our rides….then…
They off loaded 2 body bags and laid them on the gurneys.
I don’t know who those kids were, but that was their last ride on an Army Helicopter. I felt really sad at that moment. I still don’t know who those guys were, but today, Memorial Day, is about them. Most of you reading this will not actually know anybody ever killed in a war. Good. Please keep it that way.
What’s up with this flag?
In November 2003, we were at Camp Cody, Bosnia. They Army decided to close our happy little camp of about 40 troops. We got relocated to Camp McGovern. As we were driving out of the camp…on our last day there…I looked over and saw the American flag was still up. I walked over, took her down and kept her.
She went to Camp McGovern, then Eagle Base, Bosnia.
When I deployed to Iraq in 2004, she went everywhere I went. I always found room in my pack for that flag. I still have her. The protesers can go and burn a flag if they want...but if they touch this one, I am pretty sure it's the last flag they'd ever burn.
"It's not about the War, it's about the Warrior."