Join Date: May 2002
Location: Fort Belvoir, VA, 22060
Day 1, March 2004
So you think you know what you are getting into? I was one of the attachments to 1st BN 5th Marines that went in to take over for the 82nd airborne in March of 04. Luckily, I was on the advance group that got to fly into Iraq rather than the rest of the unit that had to convoy from Kuwait. The trip was uneventful, the plane-ride punctuated the fact that we were in combat by the aerial maneuvers that the cargo plane had to take while coming in for a landing. We thought we were jinxed right away when the crew chief (Air National guard guy) said that we were his last trip before they were heading home. Nice....
Anyhoo. After a short (3 hour) convoy from the airport to the base that we were to be operating out of, (The convoy we took was the most attacked convoy at the time) and got to get some sleep. The first morning we (there were about four officers and myself in one room on cots) were awoken by what would come to be the most common noise in Iraq: mortars. Think of the scene in Jurassic Park where the glass of water starts to shake on the dasboard of the truck. Just like that. Except the impacts got louder and closer. We were all groggy, but the last impact (it hit about 100 feet outside the wall) shook us all awake. We all kinda looked at each other from our racks, waited for another impact, and when there wasn't one we all laugheda little nervously, I said "Welcome to Iraq," then we all went back to sleep.
Do - or do not, there is no try!