I did not enjoy reading the front page of the paper at lunch today. My co-workers pointed out the article about three soldiers who died this weekend, and wanted to know what I thought. I briefly skimmed the names, and one sounded familiar, but the unit he was in was unfamiliar. After reading through the article thoroughly though, I was sure that my friend Sgt. Bret Eisenhower had been killed in Afghanistan.
I’m writing this article still in shock from the news. I worked with him only six months ago. I remember shaking his hand and telling him “Congratulations on your promotion.” I remember the summer camps we both attended, and the tough weekend drills that drove us into the ground. I remember watching him scrap with some of the other troops. I remember him asking me a few times for a smoke.
One thing I do remember, but did not want to was when I was over there, and hearing the news that we lost another good friend, Sergeant Buddy “Doc” Hughie. I remember saluting his picture with his rifle and helmet standing in his boots. I said to myself, never again did I want to experience that. I did not want to lose another friend.
It was not the last. A year ago, before I got out of the military, we had to have another one. Sergeant Elsie Cain lost his life in a tragic accident. I did not know him well, but I did know him well enough to warrant sadness. Losing a fellow soldier is like losing a member of your family. I hate the pangs of sadness ringing through my soul, as the men with whom I served suffered a bitter end.
I will attend Sgt. Eisenhower’s memorial if I can. As of right now I have no information about any services yet, but will go. Even though I am no longer a soldier, I will still stand with my brethren when it is needed. My prayers go out to the other families who experience this. My prayer now is that I will never have to attend another one. I pray my fellow soldiers kill our enemies and return home as the heroes they are.
My mind wanders to what would have occured had I re-enlisted. I know for sure that I would be in Afghanistan. But would I leave a widow behind? What would my fate be if I had went? Either way, I just hope our soldiers kill every insurgent there so they can come home.