Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Those wacky mail room guys

Every military unit has a very important group of soldiers whose job is to make sure the mail gets delivered. Like the US Postal employees back home, they get snarled at when them mail arrives late, damaged or not at all. But we still love 'em for sure when something special arrives from back home.

Yesterday we received the most wonderful surprise – a large shipment from the Soldier’s Angels! Thank you so much for the wonderful and gracious donation of Purple Heart backpacks, microwave popcorn, instant oatmeal, freeze-pops, candy, and seasoning.

I must admit the Soldier who is our mail clerk was cursing my name when he went to check the mail yesterday and discovered that many of the packages had my name on them. Oh how the tune changed when it was discovered that the contents of the packages were for our wounded warriors and the Soldiers assigned to the team.

Thank you again so very much. We’ll send pictures out soon of the team filling the backpacks and enjoying the popcorn at our next movie night.

Jana L., Nurse
FOB Fenty, Afghanistan

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Another message from the medics

Why do many thousands of Soldiers' Angels volunteer their time, their money and their endless love for our soldiers?

From a nurse at the 47th CSH:

Thank you for everything you and your organization have done for us. The fact that you all are there supporting us and ensuring we are able to have something from home mean the most. For all those soldier in our unit who families cannot afford to send them care packages, those single parents with no support and our wounded soldiers we say THANK YOU.

GOD Bless you

yup, that's about it.

Friday, October 02, 2009

Once the military's busiest trauma hospital in Iraq, 'Baghdad ER' closes down

(See my buddy MaryAnn's story about the closing of the Ibn Sina hospital by the 10th Combat Support Hospital unit here.

Ibn Sina, named for a 9th century scholar, was opened in 1964 by four Iraqi doctors with the aim of becoming the country's premier medical facility. It was later taken over by Saddam Hussein's regime in the 1970s, and then made Saddam's private hospital. His eldest son, Odai, was hospitalized there after being wounded in a failed assassination attempt.

After the fall of Baghdad in 2003, the military transformed Ibn Sina into its trauma center in central Baghdad. Its reputation grew in HBO's "Baghdad ER," a 2006 Emmy Award-winning documentary.

The closure has brought many of the soldiers of the 10th Combat Support Hospital full circle. The unit was deployed at the hospital at the height of the war's carnage in 2005 and 2006. The 10th Mountain (CSH) returned earlier this year and learned they would be shutting it down.

My niece has been deployed with the 10th CSH since last year, and they just moved out recently, and will be coming home by this Christmas. Soldiers' Angels has been supporting this hospital for several years. At the height of the surge last year, we were sending them massive support, including 200 of our First Response Backpacks per month. Thankfully, as the war is winding down, that need has diminished in Iraq, at least.