My son is back from overseas; how about yours, NinetyWt?

He’s actually been home for a while. I’ve been meaning to post this update on his doings (and also to ask NinetyWt about her boy), but I’ve been too busy (or lazy) to get to it as quickly as I should have.

As some of you may remember, my son, Nick, has been in the Navy for several years. He is a Hospital Corpsman who works with the Marine Corps as a field medic. In January, he left on a 6 month deployment. Although I am a Navy brat myself, and a Navy veteran, and a former navy spouse, I was apprehensive because we did not know at the beginning of the deployment exactly where Nick would end up. NinetyWt’s son left at about the same time – he is a Marine and was definately on his way to Iraq. She and I commiserated with each other in a thread she started when her son shipped out.

As it turns out, Nick never got any closer to Iraq than the border of Kuwait. He visited 10 countries. Among other things, his unit participated in a major medical humanitarian mission in Kenya – they set up camp and treated over 300 local villagers, many of whom had never had any formal medical treatment in their lives. Liberty ports he visited included France (Toulan & Marseilles), Sicily (where, coincidentally, he was conceived 21 years ago when my husband and I were stationed there), and Turkey (where he bought my husband a Huglu 12-gauge over and under shotgun). He had two minor injuries – the first when a shipboard hatch fell on his shoulder and he was in a sling for several weeks. Later, during a windstorm in Bahrain, a (big – 30 x30) tent collapsed on him. Everyone else got out of the tent before it fell, but Nick didn’t wak up until the tent fell on him! He only got bruises from that adventure.

I was going to post a picture of him in the earlier thread, but I only had his Boot Camp picture in uniform and he hates it. As do most people – I know I hated my own Boot Camp picture and I wouldn’t have wanted my mother to publicize it! Anyway, I had him take a new photo last month and here it is. Handsome guy, isn’t he?

Thanks to all of you for all the distractions during the last few months – I really do appreciate it.

NinetyWt – is your boy back yet? Nick tells me that Marine deployments are frequently longer than Navy ones, but he ought to be getting back soon, if he isn’t back already. Can you give us an update?

Gosh, Jess I was surprised at the thread title ! :slight_smile: Awesome pic of your son.

I’m so happy for you that your young man is back home; and that he got to do some good humanitarian stuff.

I cannot report the same good news however. :frowning: When my son left last January, he had transferred units to a truck company. The truck companies stay twelve months instead of six. That meant he would not come back until January.

Now he finds out that he really doesn’t like being in the truck company; so he will transfer back. The big problem (to me) with that is; his old company went for their six months; came home for six months; and now will rotate back out in March for another six months. sigh.

In this current tour, they are driving big trucks with supplies or troops from Fallujiah to Baghdad and back. They have run over several IEDs but the trucks (apparently) are so big that it isn’t a problem.

I’m happy that Nick had no serious problems … my son actually was slightly injured but it was a case of horsing around in barracks where another man shot him directly in the eye with a Super Soaker water gun … heh… . WHO goes to hospital in Baghdad with an injury from a water gun … I told him he’d never live that one down :slight_smile: .

I apologize for never starting that support thread we talked about … I am still leery of some here who castigize our troops.

Anyone else with loved ones overseas feel free to post in and give updates on how it’s going. :slight_smile:

And thank you (Jess) for asking. BTW tell Nick that funny about how the Navy will always own the Marine Corps until the MC learns how to walk on water. :wink:

Semper Fi

Well, there’s a coincidence for you. Nick has just transferred to a truck unit himself, one which will be going back over in January – so maybe Nick will be relieving your guy. I was thinking that it would suck him only being home for 6 months before leaving again (in the Navy, you usually have at least a year or 18 months between deployments). But only 2 months between deployments? That, really, really sucks.

Nick had also mentioned that this next deployment would be longer than 6 months, although he stopped short of telling me it would be a full year…

No problem on the support thread thing… I was a bit nervous about that myself.

And I did tell Nick what you said about the Marine Corps – he said most of the Marines he knows think they can walk on water anyway!

Continued good wishes to you and your husband, your son and his wife.

Thanks Jess.

I found a pic of my son and his wife: here it is. She’s so cute!

I offer this :slight_smile: to both young men and their mothers because there is no “saluting smiley.” Anyone who gets through a deployment with his/her offspring on or near the front lines and still maintains sanity deserves a salute.

Thanks Sunrazor, altho I’m not too sure how much sanity was there to begin with :wink: .

Jess it occured to me that I could tell you a little bit about how the truck company is.

BeBob is stationed in a compound in Fallujiah; they are ‘behind the wire’ as they put it. . . in a guarded, walled place where there is a bit more saftety then in other infantry positions.

They have living quarters; which are better than barracks but not as good as dorms (from what I gather). They have indoor showers and latrines. The mess hall is separate but within the compound. They also have computer access (lots of the men have a MySpace or Facebook) and access to telephones (time limits tho).

There is a Px but I think it’s in Baghdad. Son has bought a few things, including a cell phone for international use. I tink he got it in Baghdad.

Phone service is exceptional … I am amazed that he can call his wife most every day, several times a day, except when they are on special missions.

The truck co’s run a regular route most of the time, but are called on to make trips to further parts of Iraq which mean 4 or 5 days away from base.

He says they’ve been “all over” the country, and seeing as how its about 64% the size of Texas I can see how that might be likely.

Yes, Sunrazor, thanks for the kind words.

And thanks for the info, NintyWt. The circumstances you outline sound more comfortable than I’d hoped. Having a mess facility and showers is a huge plus – in Africa, they were on MREs only for the full length of the excercise, and often without showers for weeks at a time, too. And internet and phone access is a huge plus. I’m sure each truck or convoy of trucks going out has a Corpsman riding along. But I’ll bet there’ll also be a sick call or clinic set up back at the compound, so maybe Nick won’t always be out on the trucks.

Nick hasn’t actually switched to his new unit yet (I think he’ll be making the move on the 10th), so he didn’t have much to tell us about the nuts and bolts of the situation. So I definately appreciate your info.

BTW – great picture of your son and his wife. What a cute couple. She is beautiful – what gorgeous hair!