Rainy day in November
We were on patrol, as usual, when we got a report of an IED detonating on convoy in our area. We spun around and rushed to the scene to find a convoy stopped in the road. What we would usually do in a situation like this, is run down the row of vehicles looking for damage or injuries - which is exactly what we did. My team leader was a trained medic, so my truck was always the one looking for casualties. We started at the rear, and road down the line, stopping at each vehicle to visually inspect for damage, and ask the drivers - or gunners, if they had a gunner - if anyone was hurt. In situations like this, we are hoping that the convoy vehicles have radio communication with each other. Most of the time, they don't.

The first truck we came to, which was the rear vehicle in the convoy, was one of those "mad max" converted trucks that Rumsfield claims doesn't exist.

The guys in the back were freaking out. They didn't know their left from their right. My squad leader left one of our trucks back there to give them an added sense of security, and we continued forward. Down the line, no one had any idea what happened. It wasn't until we came up to the middle of the convoy that we got any information. We pulled up to a HUMVEE stopped in the road, and I yelled across - "Hey, anyone hurt." I didn't notice right away that the gunner's face was covered in blood. "No," he said. He was in shock.
He had no idea he was injured.

It turned out just be a small amount of shrapnel, and concussive damage from the blast. The HUMVEE had both front tires blown out, and the usual damage to the windshield. As they changed the tires, SGT. Downey fixed up the guys face, and the rest of us pulled security. The truckers decided they were safe, and started doing weapon maintenance. Lucky for them, we were around.

Another day in the life...

Friday, April 15, 2005
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