Friday, April 20, 2007

Things to Read, Watch or Listen To

Soldiers' Angels Europe points to several excellent stories about our men and women in uniform.

Volunteer Navy nurses serve as Skyway Angels

AL TAQADDUM, Iraq (April 19, 2007) — The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines an angel as an attendant spirit or guardian.
In famous art, artists often depicted angels as human-like beings, with white robes and wings, serving as transporters of messages from other celestial beings.

Many seriously wounded service members in Iraq can testify angels aren’t always dressed in white. Several wear tan flight suits and their wings are merely the rotors of soaring aircraft.

These particular angels remain faithful to the Merriam-Webster definition by serving as attendant spirits, as well as guardians – guardians of life.

NFL Doc Saving Lives in Afghanistan

It’s a long way from small incision, computer-guided arthroscopic surgery on a linebacker’s knee to "blood, tissue, bones, everything blowing up in your face."

"I’m not used to people dying on me," the 37-year-old orthopedic surgeon said. "I’m seeing things I’ve never seen in my career. I’ve done more amputations in six months here than in my whole five years of residency," Slusher said.

And things aren’t likely to ease up during the second half of his yearlong tour with the U.S. Army’s 541st Forward Surgical Team.

Spouse Buzz: You Might Be a Military Wife If...

My first clue that things were going to be a little odd was while we drove home - about five hours from the airport where I picked him up. As we headed down the 99 in California (quite possibly the most boring drive on earth), my husband begin to randomly inject odd words into the conversation.
"Trash bag, right"
"Dog, straight ahead"
"Broken-down car, left"
"Excuse me, honey," I broke in after a few of these incidents. "But just WHY are you describing the scenery to me?"

Give This To My Daddy

Moving thru the terminal was a group of soldiers in their camo's, as they began heading to their gate everyone (well almost everyone) was abruptly to their feet with their hands waving and cheering. When I saw the soldiers, probably 30-40 of them, being applauded and cheered for it hit me. I'm not alone. I'm not the only red blooded American who still loves this country and supports our troops and their families.

Of course I immediately stopped and began clapping for these young unsung heroes who are putting their lives on the line everyday for us so we can go to school, work and home without fear or reprisal. Just when I thought I could not be more proud of my country or of our service men and women a young girl, not more than 6 or 7 years old, ran up to one of the male soldiers. He kneeled down and said "hi," the little girl then she asked him if he would give something to her daddy for her.

(hat tip: Mudville Gazette)

Our Era's Greatest Generation - Reflection on Kansas National Guard Soldiers

Recently, while in Washington D.C. , I had the honor to visit our brave military men and women recovering at Walter Reed Army Medical Center . As I met those who had sacrificed their health for our country, I was reminded of the courage and bravery exhibited by members of the armed forces.

While there, I met two Kansas soldiers who had both suffered debilitating injuries – one a major head injury and the other a leg injury that led to amputation. I thought, before my visit, that they may be bitter.

Bitter at the situation, bitter at the war, or just plain bitter.

I quickly discovered there wasn’t an ounce of bitterness in either of them. Indeed, both mentioned what they wanted, perhaps more than anything else, was to be back in Iraq with their units. I was stunned and humbled by their commitment.

With the Peshmerga in Kirkuk (Iraq)

Where Kurdistan Meets the Redzone

I suggest reading these two posts because they show you the true separation and condition of parts of Iraq. In one part, extremely stable and prosperous. In another part, slightly scary and dangerous. In a third part, extremely dangerous and violent. There are pictures illustrating the differences and a video of the road trip through Kirkuk.

(hat tip: Mudville Gazette)

- May no soldier go unloved
Soldiers' Angels