Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Random thoughts

As I write, Gayle is flying in a perfectly good airplane back to Jacksonville from Manchester, New Hampshire. At the same time, our son is jumping out of a perfectly good airplane at Ft. Bragg. And it's a full moon. Hmmmm. The jumping-out-of-an-airplane part of my son's military career is something I have yet to fathom. I don't even like flying.

For those of you who are stopping by from Jan Wesner's Standing By, the blog post she references is down below. It is titled "Faces of our loved ones."

More attention is being paid to war deaths resulting from what the Department of Defense labels " injuries sustained in a non-combat related incident." My son had told me about one incident in which a first sergeant had committed suicide in front of his men last year. It took place in Admiyah, a Sunni neighborhood not far from where our son's battalion patrolled. The story went like this: A number of soldiers in the first sergeant's company had been killed and he had taken it very badly. On a patrol with media in tow, he jumped out of his Humvee and shot himself. His team members took positions as if a sniper had attacked. It turns out that most of the story was true except for the media. The Army Times and the Fort Worth Star Telegram have written extensively about the incident. The Army Times story can be found here.

As of May 3, there have been 123 suicides in the Iraq and Afghanistan combat zones.


Rgr Mom said...

I'm a blogger from Jan's site. I'm happy to know that there's a site for the parents.
My son is stationed at Ft. Bragg, as well. And I can relate to "jumping out of perfectly good aircraft". I can't rap my head around it either. But he's been doing it for a long time now.
It seems your son shares a lot of info with you. Mine is less likely to share much at all. Sometimes I think it might be good. I probably don't want to know some of the things he's doing.
I'm glad your son is home. It is easier when they are. Mine has been in theater several times and is on his way back to it soon. Another summer of worry and the roller coaster ride starts all over again.
Thanks for having this forum. I hope to visit regularly.

Airborne dad said...

rgr mom,

Thanks for stopping by. He had a good jump yesterday, full moon not withstanding. :)

There are a couple of sites for parents. Another one - http://parentszone.org/ - is managed by LAW, a frequent contributor to Jan's blog.

We likely pick up our third deployment at some point but don't know when. I absolutely under the summer of worry and the roller coaster ride. It never really ends, even when they are home.

ABNPOPPA said...

'Dad, I like you and RGR Mom haven't quite got the handle on this jumping out of perfectly good airplanes. Bad airplane yes, good airplane, no!

We just get one "kid" home and another seems to start prepping to go again. Dog gone it, why can't they be accounts! Of course I wouldn't want Jacob to do something he didn't want to do. UP and down, UP and down, Up and down.