A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE |
October 10, 2006
A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE
Name: American Soldier
Posting date: 10/10/06
Returned from: Iraq
Milblog url: http://soldierlife.com/
This last month stateside has given me a lot of time to view things from a different perspective and evaluate some things that I might have overlooked otherwise. I made a trip to Idaho and visited my good friend Chad. I opened up a few times to Chad and told him some of the experiences I had over there. The whole trip was worth it.
The day I left something occurred that really topped it off. While in line to get my tickets, I saw another soldier. We really stick out like sore thumbs. Anyway, I get to the Kiosk and he was right next to me. He asked me if I was coming or going. I told him I had been back for a few months now and I came back early due to being wounded. I asked him his job and he said he was a crew chief on a C5. He said he had just gotten back the night prior. In a stroller he was pushing his 8 month old baby, whom he never seen until the day before. It put a smile on my face.
Well, I kept bumping into this guy along my travels and I swore I knew him from somewhere. I just couldn't place it. The Army can seem very small, but I didn't remember him from any prior bases I was at. While on layover, I saw him and his family. I approached him and ask him about the aircraft he flew in over there. At that point I figured he might have been on the same plane I was on when I was evacuated. I described the flag in the hull and a few other things. Sure as shit that was the same plane he was the crew chief of. He tended to me while I was laid up on a stretcher. I was in and out for the duration of the flight but I remembered his face. What are the chances of that?
We parted ways and I was just happy that I had met him. I really didn't know how to respond. So I went to the terminal of my next flight. He was passing by and he came up to me pushing his baby. The words that came out of his mouth really stuck with me. "In the 16 years of my career I've always wondered about the guys that we flew out. You have made my career come full circle by meeting you." The man had tears in his eyes. He explained that he always wondered about the ones who were hurt. He knew the disposition of the ones in boxes but the ones on stretchers like me, where did they go and how did they make out?
We had some more words between two soldiers who were strangely reunited, one on a trip fresh from the war and another enduring the mental war. It was good to have that experience; it closed a few things that might have hampered a bit longer.