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INCOMING HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS


Last year's Christmas in Mosul, 2005
photo by Buck Sargent

Not only are they commemorated by columns and inscriptions, but there dwells also an unwritten memorial of them, graven not on stone but in the hearts of men.
-Pericles


On the last night I spent in Baghdad, an unusually large and noisome enemy shell impacted a few hundred meters away while I was otherwise indisposed in a portajohn. With the thin plastic walls shaking more violently than my bowels, I contemplated the possible snarky headlines:

Insurgents Catch Troops With Their Pants Down... Literally!

If I die on a combat throne...
Wipe my six and ship me home...

Yet here I am just over a month later, sitting at the kitchen table on a beautiful Christmas morning at my parents home in Austin with my wife and family. Life is good.

But as thankful as I am to be surrounded by my loved ones at this time of the year, I won't forget the men who were escorted home before us to a hero's welcome and a family's sorrow. In prior wars, they've been described as the men who "didn't make it back," but in this day and age we all return home one way or the other.

Nor will I forget the men and women who are spending the holidays in Iraq or Afghanistan. I've been there, done that, fellas. I know what you're going through. To the ones convalescing at Walter Reed: thankfully for my own family, I can't begin to imagine what you are going through. But I'm thinking of you all the same, and praying for your speedy recovery.

As should we all be on this Christmas day.

Merry Christmas!

AMEN! With 20 years of military service behind me, it is with heartfelt gratitude that I say thanks and Merry Christmas. It was my experience that it is usually the families that suffer most around the holidays, the serviceman is generally too busy to be affected for a long period of time. Fellow readers, take a moment out and thank the families for sharing their warriors that we might actually enjoy peace this holiday season.
Joe in KC

Welcome home. Having been there 1970, I know how sweet it is to be home with family, especially during Christmas. I can't say it better the Lord, "Well done good and faithful servant".
God Bless,
dltpilot

You're a mere 90 miles away - stop by and say Howdy!

Hey, Buck! So good to hear that you're home in TX for the holidays. We don't (and won't!) forget the folks who are still standing the watch for us nor the folks who have come home injured or under a flag. We're eternally grateful for our peaceful Christmas here at home and know to whom we owe that peace. God bless all of you!

Happy New Year!

We won't ever forget any of them, Buck, Christmas or any other day. Nor will we forget you. Thanks for this entry and we look forward to many more from you. Are you going to be on Hugh Hewett with Boggs? Hope so even if just a call in.
AZ

Merry Christmas! I picked my son up on Christmas Eve for the best gift of the season- he was in Charlie Company with the 4-23.
Your posts over the last 4 months really helped me get through his extension. You were as close to him as I could get, and gave me a way to view what was going on over there from a soldiers perspective. Please know that you too were in my prayers. Thank you so much- for your service and your blogs! May 2007 bring you and your family contentment and relief from stress.
Cheers!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Buck and Family. Others have said it so much better than I could ever put into words. So I'll just say thanks.

Many wishes for a truly blessed New Year go out to you Buck and to your entire wonderful family and beautiful wife. I hope that you are having a great time with the fam and am looking forward to you and the wife coming back to Alaska soon!

Em Green

From Venezuela, Thank you!! Thanks for serving and Merry Christmas.

A belated Merry Christmas, Buck Sergeant. Wishing you and your family a peaceful and blessed New Year.

Welcome Home!

I hope you were able to take the time to walk the Trail of Lights and spin under the Zilker Christmas tree!

Happy New Year to you and your family, Buck Sargent!
I do like that visual of you sitting at the kitchen table with all your family.
Thanks to you all ~

You have earned that time. Thanks for what you have done. Enjoy the season with family and friends. You have paid your dues, and you have the right to enjoy the time.

Have a great new year. Thx again

Welcome home for the holidays, holla atcha boy.

I wish you and your family a safe and Happy New Year. Thanks so much for all you've done and are doing. God bless.

It's good to know that story has a happy ending.

Welcome home Buck. We luv ya.

Sheesh that iris broad is one busy gal, spamming all the blogs.

Belated Happy New Year Buck, all the best to you and yours.

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