Taking Their Word For It?
I really love this stuff and there's a LOT more information than just these paragraphs.
February 15, 2004
"I was fortunate to be home for two weeks at the end of January and beginning of February on R & R Leave. Even coming as close as it did to the end of the deployment, it was worth it. It was 15 days away from the danger zone and 15 days in the embrace of the family that I have been missing for so long. The only downside to the experience was that I didn’t get to see so many of my friends to whom I owe so much to for their support over the last year. I hope that they all understand that I did my best to see as many people as possible, but it was the reestablishment of ties with the family that were the top priority. To that end, we spent time watching movies, taking Emily to the mall, seeing Bill at school and generally eating my way across the city and suburbs. I was surprised to be asked to be an in studio guest on WGN’s Steve and Johnnie show. They are really terrific folks who are very supportive of the troops and allowed me to talk about all of the good things that are happening here in Mosul. It was a great experience and I have been getting pictures taken wearing the show sweatshirt they gave me at various locations here in Mosul. It is kind of like a real life “Where’s Waldo”."
"Soon it will be time to say goodbye to our Iraqi friends as well and this will be very difficult indeed. While you may bump into an Army buddy from time to time, the chances of seeing many of our Iraqi friends is slim, at best. It will be hard to say good bye to these brave people who have helped us in so many ways, while at the same time showing such great courage in standing up for their country and what they believe in, putting their own safety and that of their families on the line to do so. They are heroes and patriots of the highest caliber. In the coming months and years I am sure that I will be asked by eager friends and family members if it was all worth it. Before I answer, I will think of the men and women I just described and answer with a resounding yes. At the same time I will say a prayer that the American people never have to experience the type of turmoil that has wracked this nation."