Deployment...

...my friend.. and co-worker... David... is getting deployed in a few weeks... he's in the Army Reserve... a Scout Cavalry unit from here in East Tennessee.... he's 25 years old... been married three years... two year old son... and a bun in the wife's oven... it's due in 7 months... he'll have been in Iraq for 4 months by then..

....he asked me a lot of questions before he joined up.... what life was like in the military, etc... I only have a limited experience, but I told him what I knew.. and, he made the decision himself.... he joined...

..I would ask him every couple days - for the past three months - when he was getting deployed... he'd just grin, swallow hard, and say, "I dunno... but, thanks for bringing it up, you bastard".... and, today I asked the all familiar question again, and he said... "next month"...

..we went outside for a smoke, and a heart-to-heart.... he's a good man... he is proud... he is anxious.. and, he's worried about not being around when his second child is born... but, deep down he knows that his family will be fine.. they are surrounded by good people... it seems to me.... that he is displacing his own fears and worries for his own safety... by over-worrying about those he leaves behind....

...all of us at work are worried for him... but, we know that he is doing what he wants to be doing... today, at lunch, it brought home to all of us... exactly what every single soldier, sailor, airman, and Marine is giving up....

..it's one thing entirely... to see the statistics on the TV, or hear them on the radio.... but, we all know and love David... we know is family... we've held his son.. David is one of US.. and, today, for the first time in a long time, we all felt the War hit us hard... a kidney punch of reality....

...in these times of War, we often disassociate ourselves with the pain that we see on CNN or Fox News... sure, they are "our" troops, but.... they aren't our neighbors... well... for all of those people who have managed to complete that disassociation, I know a couple hundred simple folk in Eastern Tennessee who had the nail of reality driven into THEIR eyes today at lunch....

...good luck, David... and God Speed... stay safe... and, thank you....

by Eric on March 02, 2004 | Comments(2) | SWG Stories
Blackfive - The Paratrooper of Love links with: Wednesday Warp
A Single Southern Guy In America links with: Return of the Kiss

Comments so far:

You. Are. Great. David's lucky to have such a cool cat as a friend and, well, so am I...

posted by: victoria/candida on March 2, 2004 10:41 PM

ye gut a way bout yer ritin to make us all see how everone of them soljers is amung our naybors, the best of em, in fack. tiz a nuther piece of good ritin, sir.

posted by: buddy don on March 3, 2004 07:54 AM