Wednesday, March 10, 2010

FOB Lagman Hits the Big Time (In Romania)

President Basescu in blue sweater.

The President of Romania, Traian Basescu, visited the FOB last week. As you can imagine, it was a pretty big deal for the Romanian forces here, but I was a little surprised at how excited the US forces were about the visit. He was on the FOB for about 2 hours – he talked with the Romanian/Afghan Army leadership, ate lunch and had a photo-op in the DFAC. I have to tell you, when I see ANY of the Afghan Army or National Police on the FOB I get a little uneasy and NEVER turn my back on them. Sorry about the picture quality, that was as close as I could get to him.

We’ve had a few patients come through the FST, but all were training injuries or local nationals – no combat injuries yet. One was hit in his knee with a pen flare (like a road flare), two others had distal finger amputations, and an 11 year-old boy, who was trapped under a rock in a landslide, suffered a complex facial laceration and an open distal tib-fib (both bones in his lower leg) fracture. I can’t be more specific without violating OPSEC and patient privacy.

Despite the good chow, I’ve been losing weight ever since Fort Jackson – Sunday morning in the gym I was down to 185 from 196 when I left NC. So, I decided to start having dessert. They have cake and ice cream in the chow hall every night, but I’m only going to indulge once a week. My personal goal for the deployment was not so much to lose any weight; I just wanted my pants to fit a little better. We’ll see how that goes; it’s still early in the deployment. I do have a pretty good workout schedule, hopefully I can maintain it. It’s no P90X, but I think it will be effective.

During our “down” time I’ve been researching the Vegas vacation. I forgot how great the Venetian is and how nice their suites are. Judi and I have often talked about retiring in Vegas when I retire from the Navy. We haven’t made a firm decision yet, but it’s definitely high on our list. This will be my 6th trip, Judi’s 7th, to Vegas. Sorry Rezk’s, Sharbaugh’s, Brannock’s and Shero’s, but this trip is all about us, and we’re looking at a 5-dayer.

Judi and I in all our glory at the Venetian in 2003. Can you say Mimimimosa?!?!?!

Some of the Wildlife on FOB Lagman (How scary looking is that cat?)

I’m glad to hear how often Judi is driving the Highlander, and even in the snow, so no more excuses for driving me around. Thanks again to her family for taking such good care of her and Cowher.

Take Care and God Bless,


p.s. I'm getting better at posting pictures with captions, eh?


  1. can you believe the steelers signed clark, and got randle el and johnathon scott... hope all is well


  2. hey willis! i'm most excited about clark and also think battle and allen will help with our pitiflul special teams play. hoping to be back by opening weekend.

  3. John, we have a son at your place but he's not in a position to share any information with us- he's a bit on the hairy side if you know what I mean.
    Your blog has been a way for us get a little insight we would otherwise not have. We would like to thank you for your postings and send you your team our very best. Thanks so much for keeping us all better informed. We have many friends following our son's situation and we have been forwarding your notes. They are being read and followed coast to coast. Everyone is hungry for info abut our troops - you're dong the Lord's work. Godspeed and be safe.