I know I just posted yesterday, but I feel the need to tell this soldier’s story while it’s fresh in my mind. I came back from breakfast today to the report of a soldier coming to the FST who was involved in an IED blast. He arrived stable and alert complaining of pain in his right arm and right leg, both were still attached – thank God. He was dismounted (out of his vehicle) when an IED went off, striking him on the right side of his body. He had significant soft-tissue injuries to his right arm and leg, but not much bleeding or other trauma. While I’m assessing his injuries and getting a history he tells me this is the second time he’s been “blown up”. He was also hit with a grenade in Iraq in 2008. Now I’m thinking, that is a phrase I hope I never have to utter….”blown up a second time”. Oh, I forgot to mention, he followed that statement with, “fucking Taliban”! Fucking Taliban is right, brother.
I felt compelled to tell this young man’s story (he’s 23) because I’m sure there are so many more like it that American’s DON’T hear about. I started thinking how many other American heroes are out there who have been “blown up” multiple times and have lived to tell about it? I don’t think enough of them are telling their stories. This kid is 23 years old and has served in two different combat environments, risking his life so that other American kids can be free. He will return to the states and receive his second Purple Heart which will go unnoticed to most of America and that, my friends, is a crying shame. If you’re reading this blog you need to tell this soldier’s story to as many people as you can. There is something seriously wrong in a world where Lebron “Fucking” James gets an hour of the spotlight on national television to talk about his signing of a bajillion dollar contract to play basketball while the story about a kid around his age who gets “blown up” for a second time fighting for his country will go unreported. Ok, I’m off my soap box, but seriously the toughness of these young men is remarkable and I LOVE them all. And if I ever saw Kellen Winslow Jr I would give him an earful. He’s no soldier! And he has no idea what war is…no idea. This young man is the epitome of a SOLDIER! For those of you unfamiliar with the Kellen Winslow reference here is a link:
So, right before this soldier goes back to the OR he looks at me and asks, “If they find any shrapnel in my arm or leg can you save it for me?” My answer, “you bet your ass I will!” In case you’re wondering, we did find plenty and I tucked it in his boot as he went out the door for his helicopter ride to the Role 3.
As is customary for this blog, I like to end on a lighter note so here is a link to a great Second City Television skit about getting “blowed up”. Enjoy!