Monday, January 30, 2012

30 January 2012,

Sarge Charlie – He was an American Soldier when our Nation despised them. He came home from Vietnam to be looked down upon, called names and criticized, when all he did was serve his country. I was fortunate to get to know the Sarge through blogging since 2006 and it was my goal to get to meet him one day. I’m very sad that I won’t have that opportunity to do it in person. I truly respected and honored the man very much. Sarge Charlie brought a fresh outlook on the politics affecting us over the last few years and put a smile on our face. I have seen many bloggers disagree with Sarge over various issues or points he brings up, but regardless, he respected the other persons views and vice versa. Thank you Charlie for your service, your wisdom, and for making a difference in many people’s lives. May God great you as an old friend and a new neighbor. Rest in Peace.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

9 November 2011,
Due to circumstances I took my leave early and am back home in Oklahoma for a couple of weeks. All is well with me, Mrs Dub and Miss Dub. It's been a whirl-wind of events since I got off the airplane and got back with the family. With Miss Dub as a senior this year in high school, we are taking this opportunity to visit some college campuses and let her get a feel for what and where she wants to attend.
Things in Afghanistan have been busy with my unit spread all over, the commander and I have been in a constant state of travel it seems. Life would be much simpler if I had them all under one roof. But then again, life would be much simpler if we were stationed in Hawaii or Italy instead of Afghanistan too. I keep telling the military Hawaii is primed for another attack and we should be on the front lines. I'm willing to sit on a surf board and keep a look out for attacking submarines.
Gotta get back to the rat race here and I'm sure I will be somewhat ready to get back to Afghanistan where I can take a break. Be safe and have a great day!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

25 September 2011

It's been a busy month, we have had several key people take their leave this month which allows the rest of us to pick up the slack. With that, I've managed to get to travel quite a bit throughout Laghman Province and back to Bagram, all of course business, hehe. I made my first venture through Jalalabad by convoy last week, it was amazing. By air you can see that it is one of the most advanced cities in Afghanistan. It is good to still see small children wave and smile as you go by. I remember traveling through the city and hearing one of the soldiers over the headset say he saw a person taking a picture as we drove by. Yes, in one sense this could be a tense moment as you don't know why he's taking a picture, but then again, since both the soldier in front of me and I were both taking pictures of them as we drove by I tend to think it's just curiosity. Heck, we took pictures of our vehicles when we got them, they're huge! This one is one of my favorites, it's a MATV.

I like it because I know that it happens to come in black with a light bar on top as a law enforcement package.

Well, better get going for now, be safe and have a great day.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

It was ten years ago today. I had just gotten off work from the night shift as a police officer, taken my daughter to school and was just going to bed when my wife called me and told me to turn on the news. Within minutes I had guardsmen, my soldiers, calling me and asking what we needed to do. I told them then, get ready. I too went out to my garage and pulled together all of my military gear, pulled out my clothes and packed. I did not expect a call to come on that day, but I wanted to make the gesture, to show my commitment that I was ready. That call came two years later, the 45th Infantry BDE was training at Ft. Carson heading to Afghanistan in the largest deployment for the Thunderbirds since Korea.
In 2006, for the 5 year anniversary I again was in Afghanistan serving on my second tour, The 1-180th Infantry Battalion from the 45th was called up to deploy with the 41st IBCT from Oregon.
And now, 10 years later, on this day, I write to you from a forward operating base, FOB Gamberi, Afghanistan. This war has had a toll on all of us. We have had too many losses just in this deployment so far. I will say to you now, I am proud of my commitment to the Oklahoma National Guard, the State of Oklahoma and the United States of America. I wear this uniform to pay tribute to those who died on that morning ten years ago, their families, to the men and women of the United States Armed Forces who have sacrificed their lives for our safety and to their families who feel the void in their lives now. I WILL NEVER FORGET.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

24 August 2011,

Nothing brings a smile to your face like a jingle truck.

In one week's time from now, my beautiful wife of 19 years, and 8 months will be another year older, I think she'll be 29, again. But of all that time, and with 3 deployments and a trip to New Orleans, this will be the first birthday of hers I will absolutely not be home for. I still say that I made it for her birthday in 2006 even though I was one week late. There are no plans to surprise this time but I did manage to get her a gift on time, thanks Amazon.

My relocation to FOB Gamberi in Laghman Province has occurred and I finally have Internet again. Not the most reliable, but I am able to Skype with the family and that's a huge win in my world. I just got back from Kalagush where I have some of my soldiers, and I took a couple of pictures.

(of course, this picture doesn't represent how I feel, or does it?)

The mountain range surrounding this place is magnificent.

Be safe and have a great day!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

11 August 2o11,

* * * CAUTION: This post is my venting. * * *
I can say without a doubt, this has been the most miserable deployment I've been on. Even my time in New Orleans, just days after Hurricane Katrina, was more enjoyable. I'm already doing the jobs of two full time E-8s and now they want to move me to another camp to take on more responsibilities. I'm not fully functioning at the two I'm doing now. In fact, I will probably be getting my hateful call from Division tomorrow about a tasking they gave me. Life sucks.

I have promised my family and myself, this will be the last deployment. I'm tired of the BS. Tomorrow I will have been in the military 17 years. Although I have had ups and downs like anyone does with any job, this last year has all been down. I feel lied to and betrayed by this brigade. It's very sad. On the 13th, I become eligible to re-enlist again. For 16 years the plan has always been getting a minimum of 24 years, which means I would enlist one more time for six more years. Well, they have done a fantastic job of changing my mind over the last six months. I could still re-enlist for 3 years and get a bonus. I need 2 more years to get my 20, which has always been the goal, but I'm wondering if it's even worth my time to do that. I'm just tired.
For anyone reading this post, don't worry about me, don't feel you need to make some comment, just be safe and have a great day for yourself.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

8 August 2011,
So far the month of August has not been kind to us. We lost 4 of our own in a weeks time in 3 separate attacks. Our prayers go out to the families as well as the comrades left behind struggling during this time.
I have been very busy as of late fulfilling the roles of the First Sergeant as well as the other hat I wear in country. My unit is officially scattered to the four winds here and it's interesting how we are getting things done with a lot of coordination.
With the assistance of some folks back home, I think I have Mrs Dub and Miss Dub convinced to meet me on my R & R time. I'm glad as this year away holds very big milestones in our family and being away has been difficult.
The first big event is Mrs Dub and I will be celebrating our 20th wedding anniversary, (16 of which I was actually home for). For our 10th anniversary we re-newed our vows in Las Vegas with the ceremony being officiated by Elvis. It was a blast. So, for the 20th I'll have to add some extra WOW to the mix. Our second milestone is Miss Dub turns 18 and will graduate High School in May. All signs point to me being home to see this event, which has been a very big issue in our household. I screw that up and I might as well stay here in Afghanistan.
Be safe and have a great day!