1st Battalion 22nd Infantry
During Operation Iraqi Freedom, Bob Babcock, President of the 22nd Infantry Regiment Society, sent daily news updates concerning the activities of the 4th Infantry Division in Iraq, to families and friends of the soldiers of the 4th ID.
In return, Bob heard from various family members, who had been contacted by their loved ones in Iraq. The following letters and messages are brief snippets about 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry soldiers, and taken as a whole, give a good picture of what life was like for the Regulars of 1st Battalion during their assignment overseas. At the same time, these letters also give a good idea of what soldiers' loved ones were going through back home.
October 4, 2003
My husband is in B Co 1-22 in
Bayji and I finally got to talk to him today for about 5
mins. He sounded good, although he said that he is ready to
come home. He also told me how he does not know when he
will be back on R&R but he should be on the top of the
list because we had our daughter. He hasn't seen her yet
and she is almost 6 months old. Either way it was great to
hear his voice. Besides the regular requests for Kool Aid
and razors, he had nothing new to really tell me. I just
wanted to share with everyone how great it was to finally hear
his voice after soooo long. I'm so proud of the soldiers
out there and I hope they all come home safe and sound.
After a little over 4 weeks I finally received two letters from my son. He is in Bayji, Iraq with the 1-22 B-Co. 1st Plt. out of Ft. Hood. He said the reason he hadn't called is that they have been having problems with the phone lines. And that they have been busy. And that it has cooled off some and the nights were even cooler. He also said that he probably would not take his leave. He said some of the other guys that were married needed to come home and see their kids and wives. So he would give his slot to one of them. I wrote him back and told him that was a great thing for him to do. And I was very proud of him for that. He is also excited because he is driving the Bradley now instead of riding in it. He said all the guys and him were doing okay and missed everyone back home.
October 2, 2003
I have been speaking to my son
on a regular basis now. He is with HHC 1/22 IN, 4th ID.
I am just beside myself with joy to be able to talk with him so
often. It makes me feel as if he is down the street!
He is working in a medical facility now so he is able to make
calls, has access to showers, A/C, and yes, a stove!!! He
seems to be in good spirits each time we talk. I know the
fact he can call makes such a difference on both of us. He
spoke of the 2 weeks he "might" get to come home.
He said he was not sure if he would take advantage of this
opportunity as the "good-byes" will be much
harder. I do understand, but just the same, I hope he will
come home if he is able to. I am looking forward to not
only seeing him, but spoiling him as well! He is in good
spirits about having to wait until April to come home to.
He has a job to do and plans on being there until the end.
I received 3 letters from my
husband today (Alpha Co. 1-22 ) he said everyone is ready
to come home and that he has not had any time off since he got
there. He knows he is far down on the list to come home and
he hopes that he at least gets a couple of days R&R
soon. He said the missions have slowed down and that they
mainly just patrol now. He said they finally have
electricity 24/7..... Overall he is in good health but is
homesick and wishes he could use the phone more than once a
couple of weeks. Let's pray our soldiers come home soon!
October 1, 2003
I just received a letter from my
son yesterday. He is with 4ID 1/22 HHC IN BN. I had read
that others were sending questionairres to the soldiers, so I
started sending a fill-in-the-blank type form to him. That is
what he sent back. Thanks for the great ideas from everyone in
the newsletter! He sent the names of all the guys in his unit,
answered specific questions as to what I might send, cheap fabric
band watches, oreos, battery operated razor, another camera and
large mailing envelope to send the disposable cameras back in. I
also asked what he did in his leisure time, etc (sleep and read)
to give me an idea of what his day is like. It made me cry to see
his handwriting again. It's amazing how much you can miss the
September 29, 2003
My husband is with 4th ID
1-22 A Co. He gets to call at least every other day. He was
one of the guys that helped find the big weapons cache. He called
home today and said that he won't be able to come home for leave
since his name is so far down the list, but at least when he
comes home we won't have to say good-bye 2 weeks later. He
re-enlisted last week and was very upbeat. I am so proud of him!
God Bless all our soldiers!!
I received a call from my son, 3/66
AR, out of Fort Hood, 4th I.D. attached to the 1/22nd.
Lots of raids each night. He had 3 stitches in his head
when a hatch fell on him. But is ok. He won't be coming
home for the leave and it is difficult for him to see his
comrades go. I will be especially conscious of supporting
him while others come and go. He did not have a need for
anything and did not want any more smoked oysters! He said he was
hungry one day and that is all he had to eat and nothing to eat
with them and they made him nauseous. (too rich I guess).
September 27, 2003
One of the soldiers we send
packages and letters to is the Company Commander of Gator Company
(A Co) 1/22. (That's "AlphaGators") He
wrote in a letter dated September 12: "As for events
here, the men continue to do a lot of great things. The patrols,
raids, and civil affairs work over the past few months is
beginning to pay off. The local economy is rebounding and many
more Iraqi citizens are willing to cooperate with U.S. forces.
Most schools will open for fall classes in the end of September.
Most civilians are beginning to live relatively normal lives.
However, there are still groups of non-compliant forces that are
intent on hurting U.S. forces. We will continue to find these
people and bring them to justice. I'm confident that we will
prevail in all our missions, and that Iraq will be a better
country in the long run..." And of course he signed it
Gators! What a great leader he is. He always exudes such
pride in the men. I know that my family doesn't personally know
any of "our" soldiers, but they have become our loved
ones, and they are in our thoughts and prayers, and of course our
September 26, 2003
My boyfriend's dad called me
this morning letting me know that our soldier (HHC 1-22 IN
SCOUT SNIPERS) had called him bright and early. He's
doing good, just letting us know that he's receiving all our
letters and packages. We both heard about the mid-tour about a
month ago, yet now were not sure if he'll be able to come home.
He is on the list but he said that theres no point in coming home
if its not before December. He wants to stay and do his job 100%,
besides 2 weeks is hard to share with your family and girlfriend
when we live 2 hrs apart. But all in all to those who get time
with there LOVED ONE, enjoy the blessing that has been givin. And
for those who wont get the chance,its just going to make the real
homecoming 100 times better. I know mine will!!!!!
September 23, 2003
Heard from my son who is a medic with 4th inf. 1/22. They had a memorial service for the three fallen soldiers today. He said it was very respectful. He was one of the medics who tried to work on the soldiers, but to no avail. He is having a hard time with all that is going on, but he says he has a job to do, to help the people and they won't come home till its done.
I got a letter today from my son in Charlie Co 1-22 in Tikrit, he is supposed to be in the states by october 15th, his hitch is up. He has been real busy with raids. He said he had watched a movie as some of the guys had tv's and dvd's, so things are getting better. He said believe it or not he is going to miss it all after he is back. He also was glad the temps have dropped, he said the heat just kicks their butts. He told me not to worry. HA!HA!
September 22, 2003
I received 4 letters on Thurs, 3 on Friday, and a call at 12:09am on Saturday from my husband (Alpha Co. 1-22 IN BN). I wanted to share a little of one of his letters with you. Just so you know at my fathers place of business they have a sign up, a flag and a yellow ribbon. I told my hubby about it and this is what he said "tell your dad that they don't need to have stuff up on a wall for me. I am only doing my job and helping out a group of people that need a lot of help. I am not a hero or someone special. I am only a man who chose to do a job and now only have to pay for it by missing his loved ones". When he called on Sat. it had been 12 days since I had heard from him and he sounds really homesick and missing everyone back home....
September 19, 2003
I received a call from my
husband Tuesday. He is in HHC 1-22 IN BN in Tikrit.
He is doing well, just missing home. He has been able to
call home at least once a week, which is wonderful compared to a
couple of months ago, when I would go weeks with out hearing from
him. I got some pictures from him which gave me some insight of
how he was living and what it was like in Iraq, it is pretty
interesting. The only things he asked for was to send him a
pillow and some more rice krispie treats. I had sent him
some more weight gain powder drinks and some weight gain
vitamns. He said even though they are gross he needs them
since he has lost over 20 pounds since being there. He says
he just cant wait to get home and I cant wait until he gets
home. God bless our troops and keep praying for them!
September 18, 2003
I heard from my son yesterday. He is with 1/22 HHC IN BN. He is doing better this call. His last call last week he was very down.... He said they have electricity and a backup generator so they have been running their a/c all the time. He told me about a picture of himself and 3 other men that were firing a mortar and I found that on the internet. It was so nice to be able to see a picture of him, although if he hadn't told me it was him I wouldn't have known! He asked for a battery operated electric razor. He said several of the men have them.
September 10, 2003
I heard from my husband who is in HHC 1-22, this morning. He has been able to call at least once a week, and it is wonderful to hear his voice. He says they are all ready to come home, but haven't heard anything new. He has basically been asking for snacks in his packages. I am sending out a package today with some shorts and boxers, he says that he doesn't have anything to just sit around in. I also went to bag and baggage and got a magnetic chess board, so he wouldn't lose any pieces. Those men and woman are doing a great job over there and we all need to continue to pray for them.
My boyfriend called on Sat.(6th)
and to my surprise this morning (tues.9th). It feels really good
to just hear his voice. He must be feeling good because he was
cracking jokes left and right. That just makes me know he is
doing good. He was saying how tired he has been and that it feels
good to go "home". It was weird that he said HOME
because he isn't home, but Iraq has been home to him these last 5
months. But I asked him where he was and he said, "in a
smelly tent with 5 or so smelly guys that haven't showered in
like 2 days." I was hoping for a city but he has to be slick
and say funny things. I've also been getting emails and
letters but I think we can all agree that those phone calls go
the extra miles. My soldier is with HHC 1-22 Scout
Snipers. God bless all of our soldiers and the wonderful
things they are doing for Iraq as well as the USA. keep
Hi,my husband is from B
company 1-22 in baiji. He called a couple days ago and said
that they would be going to R and R camp this Sunday for four
days. He has requested game boy advance and an instant camera. I
guess a lot of the guys have those there. He sounded very up
beat. Also said they had been very busy doing missions.
September 9, 2003
I heard from my husband on
Monday at 4:30pm (Alpha Co. 1-22 IN BN). He sounded
down, but we got to talk for about 30 minutes. He said he
was ready to come home. He said he received 20 letters from
me all at one time! So I am not sure how the mail is
working. I was also blessed enough to receive a letter on
the same day. It was dated 08/17. He said he hadn't
had any sleep in over 24 hours and only gets to sleep here and
there. He said the power goes out a lot and it is hard to
write in the dark. I have decided to send him a book
I was very excited to hear from my fiancee this afternoon especially after hearing about this mornings raids in Tikrit. He is with A. co 1/22. He sounded very good. We got to talk for a while. He laughed and joked around with my daughter and I. He says he needs lots of Ramen Noodles, CD's and DVD's. I went out today and got him a Portable DVD player and some DVD's. I just wanted to say thank you so much for having this type of up dates because I can't just go and sit in front of the T.V. it gets too depressing for me. This is the only way I can manage to hear the news.
September 6, 2003
I spoke to my husband (A
Co.1-22) on 09-04 in the am hours, I had sent him an American
Red Cross Message to let him know that our second child had
arrived on 09-03. He got the message in under 7 hours and we got
to talk for 8 minutes, we haven't spoke in 3 weeks so I was
grateful. But the good news is for the rest of the expectant
mothers; the American Red Cross is doing their best.
September 4, 2003
Got a call Monday 9-01-03
around 3am. It was from my son. He is with the 4th Id 1-22
B-Co. 1st Platoon out of Ft. Hood. He is in Bayji, Iraq.
He was in a great mood and was picking at me and laughing. We had
a wonderful chat. He talked to his Dad and brother. We all talked
for about 45 mins. He said it was cooling off some there and
things had slowed down some for them. They are training Iraqi
soldiers and policeman. He also wanted clothes soap, b-b-q sauce,
mustard & catsup. So today I sent it all to him. They have
gone in together and bought a camp stove from the PX. He also
said they were able to get ice now. That is a blessing!! He said
they were all doing good. God Bless All Our Troops. And Thank God
for the Ice.
September 3, 2003
I am so darned proud of
him....that 19 year old man of mine! He is with A-Co
1-22 Infantry from Ft. Hood, stationed in Tikrit! I
know I write to you a lot, but you were just asking for more what
we're hearing and we got a letter on Friday, a phone call at
2:00am Sunday and another one at 10:00am today! I am loving
it. He sounds tired and from what he was telling me, it was
no wonder! I never thought of sending a pillow till I read
that in your update and today he said to send one, as he has been
bunching up his sleeping bag to use as a pillow since they were
in Mosul and he says he wakes up with zipper marks on his
face! Also, I bought him a hand held voice (tape)
recorder (why didn't I think of that sooner) and I sent an
extra pack of the mirco cassettes. He said today that a lot
of the guys have them...I only wish I would have thought of that
6 months ago.
I received a phone call from my
hubby (Alpha Co. 1-22 IN BN) on Sunday and a letter
from him on Tuesday. He said he is doing well but is ready
to come home! His spirits are still good......... He said to keep
sending the lemonade mix and lots of letters and pictures of
September 2, 2003
I got a letter from our son
today he is in Tikrit Charlie 1-22 4 ID, he only has a
little over a month left as he is getting out soon, he said they
were still busy with raids and he had just heard an explosion
near by, so they were probably going to be called out soon. He
just said this war is so not over! And that he was trying
to make it home alive! And to keep the letters and packages
coming right up to the day he leaves..... He will miss his
buddies, but can't wait till get out of Iraq! God Bless
Heard from my son (1-22 in
baiji). They are supposed to move into an air
conditioned building soon, he says he'll believe it when he sees
it. Also supposed to get internet access soon. He
asked for new sneakers -- first time he's ever trusted me to buy
him sneakers, although he was very specific about what he
wanted. He loves your updates, asked me to print it out
daily and mail it to him. it's the only way he has of
keeping track of the rest of the 4th.
August 26, 2003
We got a letter from our son
over the weekend, A-CO 1-22 IN serving in Tikrit. It
was, as he put it, a random letter! He sort of jumped
around from one thing to another. But I want to let the readers
know that his letter was dated Aug. 9th and he said he already
gotten my packages that I mailed on July 28th!!! WOW big
improvement in the mail. He is asking for drink mixes...he
said he goes through at least one cannister a day! And the
other big request was for the Chefboyardee lunch cups...he just
gobbles those up...... He said that when it was their turn
to use the satellite phone, they were out on a mission and it
happened more than once. Then he said when they finally got
to use it, it was broken, so he decided to just write. I do know
they are in a palace, although the living situation is less than
palacial...some soldiers have cots, some sleep on the floor on
their sleeping bags. He did mention that they have a tv and
get satellite tv so they have watched CNN and MTV...those were
the two he specifically mentioned. He said the actual palace is
just beautiful though, everything is carved and ornate. He
said he is taking a lot of pictures.... His spirits are
great...better than mine I must add! I worry about him
constantly, as I know everyone reading this does with their
soldier as well. These are some very strong and courageous
young men and women and my prayers go out to each and every one
of them....come home safe and sound!
Our son, 4ID, 1-22, B Co., called at 3:30 this morning. He sounded so good--I don't care how early it was. His platoon, that he just moved to, still doesn't have electricity or running water, but they do have hot meals. We asked about the temperature, and he did agree that he often needs a light blanket at night because it feels so cool after the heat of the day. He asked for more books, Vienna sausages, and socks like the ones we had sent him before. He wanted more Country Time lemonade (regular or strawberry) and Kool-Aid, but said he really didn't need Gatorade as they can occasionally get that from the PX (and he prefers the other drinks). Hearing his good spirits makes me so proud of him and all the other young men and women who are putting up with incredible hardships to protect us. Praise God for these soldiers.
August 24, 2003
I heard from my husband today. He is with the B CO 1-22 3RD plattoon in Bayji. (Ed Note: I used to be platoon leader of that platoon in Vietnam!) Right now he is in Tikrit at a medical facility because he has a really bad case of prickly heat. The doc's are trying to treat it with steroids and other things like a/c. I was so relieved to hear his voice especially after hearing the news about the truck that ran over the mine outside Bayji. He said he is doing okay, just homesick and very hot. He wished our son a Happy Birthday since our son turns 1 today, and of course said how he wished he could be here to help celebrate with us...... All things considered his spirits sounded high. He said they are living in a concrete house with no running water, or electricity but that within a month or so they are supposed to get those things. He also said that he had a rude awakening a few days ago. He had been on patrol and just dozed off from pure exhaustion when he heard a loud explosion. Turns out that the base where they are living came under a morter attack. About 6 rounds hit the base, thank God no one was hurt, but I can't imagine how scary that must have been. I asked him if he was scared and of course I got the male answer "NAW, I am getting used to hearing things like that around here." Isn't very reassuring for me but at least no one was injured. He said he was still getting along with the other guys but he said that sometimes they really do get on each others nerves, being in such close quarters and seeing each other all the time, but he said everyone was doing fine. Oh yah, I also asked him about the weather during the winter months. He said he had talked to some of the locals and they said that it could get down to 32 degrees. His comment to that was "Great, I won't have to worry about heat rash or stroke just frost bite"
August 23, 2003
My son is a medic with A.
Co., 1/22 IN. I get his letters in bunches, but they
have been coming regularly now....They all loved the bubbles,
yo-yo's, and many other outside toys I sent! During all of
this going on over there, he has passed the promotion board and
is waiting for his points to be promoted to Sergeant. His 4
years is up in 8 short months. He was planning on leaving
the Army for sure once in Iraq, however, he has reconsidered and
is now thinking of re-enlisting for 3 more years. I suspect
he will remain in the Army for a very long time. Speaking
from a mothers point of view, a day will not go by without me
worrying, yet, I do believe he made the right choice by joining
the Army, and there couldn't be another mother more proud of
their son than I am today and always!
August 22, 2003
I got to hear from my boyfriend
this morning (8/20). It's been like 2 weeks and we talked for
like 15 min this time around (compared to the 5-10 min.). He said
he's been really busy and that he won't be writing as much so he
didn't want me to think he forgot about me. (That's okay,I'll
still be writing). But just to hear his voice was
wonderful. He's with the HHC 1-22 Scout Snipers now and he
said they might get the phone more often. We'll just wait
and see. Keep on smiling :) and stay strong for our loved ones.
I rec'd my first letter in
almost 2 months from my son who's in Tikrit with A Co., 1-22
INF, 4th ID. He sounded good. Said he was tired -
lots of late night raides - and has had very little sleep.
He said one highlight was getting 3 cans of coca-cola with their
water rations last week. He is going to get exciting news
from my daughter-in-law - they are expecting their first child in
January '04 and she found out today it's a BOY!!!! God
bless my son and all our brave men and women!!! A very proud mom
and soon to be grandma!
August 21, 2003
Our son (HHC/1-22, Scout
Platoon) who is in Tikrit has only been able to send out
letters but on August 8th we received an e-mail. His e-mail
said that they "finally" have e-mail set up. We
have not heard from him since. In his last mailed letter he
specifically requested more of the Zone Perfect Bars that I have
been sending. They are loaded with protein, about 16 grams,
and can supplement a long afternoon or late night. He has
also asked for tuna in pouches. He said that candy and
sweets are nice but it's just too hot and the sugar absorbs too
much water out of their bodies. Many thanks to all who have
posted news, since we are hearing very little we scan for tidbits
from others who may be near our son. Our thoughts and
prayers are with all of our soldiers!
August 20, 2003
I heard from my husband this morning. He is with 1-22 B CO 3rd platoon in Bayji. ... I did get to tell him about our son learning to walk last week. He was overjoyed to hear that. It all puts things in perspective seeing our little boy walking. Because when he left our son wasn't even crawling yet. So needless to say my husband is heartbroken that he is missing so much, but he is handling things sooo well. Just like a true soldier should. He didn't say much about what is going on since we had very little time to talk, but his spirits were high......
August 18, 2003
I just wanted to say that I got a phone call from my husband (B co 1-22) Friday. We were able to talk for at least 45 minutes. Again, it was nice to hear his voice. He said that they were going to start training about 32 Iraqi's who would make up the new Army there. He was very hopeful and excited about the training because he knows the sooner they are able to take over operations on their own the sooner he will be coming home. He also said temperatures are HOT! When I asked how he was dealing with the heat he said he had been treated for heat related illnesses. He said after receiving a couple of IV's he was feeling better. He also said the nights are much cooler dropping down to the 80's and when that happens he is actually sleeping in his sleeping bag because that is considered cold to him. May God Bless our Troops and Keep them Safe!
That is two calls this weekend and I am thrilled. He is with the 1/22 of the 4th ID out of Ft. Hood. All seems well...he asked for phone cards, foot powder and ANTIBACTERIAL wipes...not baby wipes and a ton of drink mixes...he goes through one cannister a day. He is getting mail that I sent at the end of July early August, so that is a big improvement
August 15, 2003
we got a call from our 19 year old son, Pfc. Lee, Eric with Alpha Company, 1-22 out of Fort Hood, Texas at 2:00am today! What a welcome relief to hear his voice as he is stationed in Tikrit right now and from what he told us, they ARE in the thick of things! He sounded great! He was calling on a satellite phone and the connection was real good, but we only got to talk for about 15 minutes and then he "had to go". He said he is set with toiletries, but to keep sending food and drink mixes. They are staying in one of the palaces, although the air conditioning goes on and off pretty regularly. He said it is about 120 degrees and they get to shower every couple of days! What a welcome relief that phone call was, as the 1/22 is all over the internet articles about Iraq.
August 14, 2003
My son who is with 4ID 1-22
HHC IN BN called today at 1:15 (Wed 8/13). He was at MWR
which is the Soldiers Inn. He said they were there once
before but the pool was down so he didn't get to go swimming. He
said they were there just for a day or so now. The air
conditioning was blasting while we were talking so he was cold.
The do just night work now. One night they will do night patrol.
He is the point man since he is good at it he said. He was a
gunner with the M60 or 240 before becoming point man. The second
night they will do "hot gun" and the third night they
guard detainees. They did do one day patrol, but it was 136
degrees and they were in full armor. He carried the machine gun
and his buddy carried a rucksack with another 200 rounds of ammo.
They were called in an hour early which was good because they
were getting ready to drop. I asked what he needed and he said a
battery operated fan would be nice. He is getting tired of
gatorade so I suggested koolaid and he said that sounded good. I
suggested protein powder or instant breakfast and he said he had
some, but can't drink it because it is too rich after the MREs
and messes up his system. I begged and pleaded for pictures and
he said he has one camera with some pictures taken at night
showing him in the muzzle flash. He will try to finish off 2
cameras and will send them. He will start writing again he said.
He said everyone has kept him well supplied and wanted everyone
to know he thanks them and that he shares with buddies when he
gets packages. I told him I ordered 5 cool ties and he should get
them in a couple of weeks. We were cut off then. I waited a while
to see if he would call back, but hasn't.
August 12, 2003
We got a letter posted 7/29 from
our son with B Co./1-22 in Bayji it arrived in only
11 days, a new record for us in CA. He said his unit has
been extremely busy seems like business is picking
up in the aftermath of the Hussein brothers
demise. B Co. is scrambled out on Elvis
sightings fairly often, i.e., to investigate rumors of
Saddam in the area. Our son is sending 8 rolls of film to
us via one of his buddies who is returning to the States (lucky,
lucky buddy...). He said B Co. guys only get phone access
about once a month for 10 - 15 minutes each. They are
occasionally able to persuade the guys in the nearby 3-66
AR, who apparently have greater phone availability, to let them
make additional calls (everyone in the sand box should share
their toys, right?). He used the 3-66's phone to call his
wife last week to discuss their second sons arrival in a
couple of weeks (LOTS to discuss there). He said that MSNBC
has had a TV crew following them around and said to look for him
on a feature about oil fields. He also said he needed more
envelopes (more are now enroute, some cleverly preaddressed to
dear old mom and dad back at the old homestead). All in
all, he sounded like he was doing OK.
As always I check my email as
soon as I get up and love reading the letters from other family
members of the Army's 4th ID. I wanted to share something
that happened to me. I work in a doctor's office and
proudly wear a picture of son daily, most people will comment but
sadly don't really show interest. Today I had a WW II
veteran come in, he was a member of the 29th Field Artillery
and when he saw the picture of my son in his Infantry uniform he
stood as straight and tall as he could and snapped a salute that
was as crisp and clean as a newly taught private. Of course
he asked all about my son and where he was, what he was doing and
what we hear from him. He passed along this message - no
matter where you go, who you become in civilian life, how the
world treats you - in your heart of hearts you will always be a
United States Army soldier. He told me to tell "my
hero" thank you for all that he is doing and that
there will never be another thing in his life that will change
him like his time in the military but that he will have
to choose for it to be a change for the better or the worse.
Words of wisdom. I told him about this website and
promised to bring in all of the information that I could.
Just want you to know Bob that you are appreciated by all of us
out here in the civilian world. HOOAH and God continue to
bless the 4th ID. A proud mom of US Army's 4th ID, 1/22
Infantry Battalion, Alpha Company, Headquarters Platoon.
August 11, 2003
I heard from my soldier
yesterday Charlie Co 1-22 he is pretty upbeat! He is
due to leave the sand pit October 1st as his time in the Army is
almost up. He said things have been pretty quiet in Tikrit for a
couple of weeks. I guess his Bradley and another had to open fire
one day and since then they are having seconds thoughts about
messing with 1-22! He said he got the 10 pounds of beef
jerky, he shared it and said to send more. And wants us to keep
the letters coming, we will continue to support the troops even
when he comes home. I will send packages to other soldiers.
God bless all our troops!
August 9, 2003
I talked to my fiancee last
night, he's part of A co. 1-22 in Tikrit. He sounded good,
we even had a couple of laughs (I love his laugh!) I told
him that I've heard through the news that he's been very busy,
and he said yes they had been extremely busy, but couldn't go
into details over the phone. I asked him if he has been
able to do the R & R thing that I keep hearing everyone
getting to do, but he said no, as they are letting the soldiers
go first, then the NCO's will go later (he's an SSG) and then he
added that that probably means the NCO's won't get a chance to
make it to the R & R place. Made me feel sad for him, but
glad that they are letting their soldiers go first to ensure the
morale is staying on the up and up for the younger guys out
there. .......... He asked for more canned goods now
that they have cooking capabilities, and protein powdered drinks
so that he won't keep losing so much weight. Also asked for a
portable CD player and some CD's, and some flimsy photo albums
for all the photos that his family & I keep sending
him! God bless all our troops over there, we are all so
August 7, 2003
just got a letter from my son, 1-22 in bayji. he says your updates are cool and i should keep sending them to him. he also says drink mix is gold because it makes the warm water they usually have to drink go down easier. the letter is dated 7/24. it takes about three weeks for packages to get to him, two weeks for letters. today is his 28th birthday; i hope he got the birthday party in a box i sent him. he also said not to expect phone calls, they get very little phone time. he has had a total of 6 minutes phone time and used it to call a girl he insists is not his girlfriend(!). he also said not to worry if we don't hear from him for a while because if anything is wrong, we'll hear pretty fast.
I just wanted to share that I had received 3 phone calls from my husband (B Co 1-22) yesterday. The first call was around 5 am. He sounded very upbeat and we were actually able to joke and share some laughs! It was great to hear his laugh! The second and third calls came around 4 pm. Unfortunately, I missed those calls b/c I am use to only getting the one phone call every two weeks so I wasn't expecting the others! He did leave voice mails and I was able to share them with the kids, which they have played over and over! So does this mean Baiji has phones now? I find it hard to believe that he was lucky enough to use a satellite phone that much.
August 6, 2003
My husband is with the 1-22
Bco 4id In Bayji. I had an idea about a gift for the
Christmas box I will be sending in the next few months. I was
thinking about sending a mini cassette tape (because he already
has the recorder) with the family singing carols. So that way he
can hear the carols on Christmas. What do you think about this?
Do you think it is a good idea or do you think it will be too
hard for them? Just a question. I have really enjoyed your
updates. I have been forwarding them to my family members and
they are hooked. I havent heard a lot from my husband. It took a
month for me to hear anything from him so I was beginning to get
nervous. He said they have been REAL busy. Going on missions
looking for Saddam, but he seems in good spirits. Really
ready to come home and see our son, who will be a year old on the
23rd of this month. When my husband left he was only 7 months
old. Anyway.. just wanted to get your opinion on my idea. Keep up
the good work. (Ed Note: My response back to her was - go ahead
and do it. Christmas will be tough on all of us but he
might as well hear the voices of his family singing familiar
Christmas carols, may make him cry but that's okay).
Suggestion from an A/1-22
Infantry wife: I just thought I'd share this Info
with some of your readers regarding the Voltage to charge up
Little appliances. I had sent my husband a Portable DVD Player,
which he loves but he told me that he needed a Transformer as
well since they are on European Voltage which is 220 and they
can't charge their Gadgets without transforming it ,since it is
110V over here in the States. I still had several Transformers
around the House from when we lived in Germany that I'll be
sending his way, but for anyone who doesn't, I'm sure the Thrift
stores on post have them available as well. (Ed Note:
And for us civilians away from an army post, any travel store in
a mall has voltage converters. This is first time I've
heard of this problem, so be sure it applies to your soldier
before worrying about sending the converters. Some units
may have generators that don't need conversion).
August 4, 2003
Bob the attack that happened on
the convoy was the 1-22 . And Fox news showed it all day
today (Saturday). Well it showed the medics coming out of the
palace with the litters of wounded soldiers. One of the medics
was my son. I couldn't believe I saw him on tv doing his job. To
me he looked great.
My son who is with 4ID 1/22
HHC IN BN called this morning at 6:32. We had about 3 minutes
to talk. It was nice and clear with just a little delay. He said
they are staying in one of the buildings of the palace complex in
Tikrit now. They have a/c when the city power is on, about 1/2
the time. They just got back from 10 days in the mountains where
they went to guard some detainees. He said when they left they
were told to pack up and that was hard with all the packages he's
been getting. Thank you to everyone for sending packages he said.
He said to please send things in small packages so they don't go
bad before he gets a chance to eat all of it. He also said to
please not send any more Jolly Ranchers, he has tons of that. He
has very little or no contact with the locals, so can't give them
to the local kids. He asked for more cigarettes. Their scout was
shot, but it wasn't deadly. Their track took a mortar round. He
didn't say anything more about that. I asked if he has lost
weight and he said he has managed to lose a lot. Everybody is so
tired of MRE's and C-rats that they are all losing weight. They
have been going into the city for check points and providing fire
coverage for the raids. He has been dropping mortars and he is
glad that they are all doing infantry type stuff finally. There
are about 20 guys in his company. They have all heard a rumor
that it will be awhile before they get home. I confirmed what I
had read was the official word on that. He said he wasn't happy
about it, but that's the way it goes and they'll live with it.
The complex has a phone center and it goes by rotation who gets
to use it. The last couple of times it was their rotation they
were out and couldn't use it. He has some phone cards for when he
does get to use it. If anyone sends reading material, he likes
science fiction and fantasy type books. I told him about the guy
who hadn't had a shower in 57 days and hoped he wasn't one of
them, he said no they get one on a regular basis now. That was
about it. He sounded upbeat, but tired. It was so nice to hear
August 2, 2003
I stand beside the
love of my life my out standing husband who stands by his men in
4 th id 1/22 inf. i love you john and sure do miss you. stay safe
August 1, 2003
I got a letter today 7-31-03
from my son who is in Bayji, Iraq with the 1-22 In B-Co 4th Id
1st Plt. out of Ft. Hood. ...... He also said all was good
and very busy. And said he was ready for a fishing trip. But his
letter was really upbeat and he seemed to be in a very good mood
by the pictures he drew me and sent. We are best of friends and
have on going jokes going on between us with pictures...... God
Bless Our Troops and All The Family's...A Mom in Texas.......
July 29, 2003
I heard from my husband who is in A-CO 1-22, last night. He called around 3:30 am. He is doing good and I was the one who broke the news to him of them leaving in April. They hadn't been told yet. He also said they were on a raid to capture Saadams bodyguard and when I woke up this morning he was on tv. He was holding the bodyguards arm and leading him out of the home. It was very exciting to see him. I have been on the internet all morning looking for him and I have seen several pictures of him. When I asked how he was doing all he says is he is hot, sweaty and ready to come home. I dont blame him, but he said he is doing his job and will be home as soon as he can.......... So if your man is in A-CO 1-22 watch Fox News that is the best channel to watch to see your husband.
July 28, 2003
It is 2:00am July 28th. And my
Son just called from Bayji, Iraq. He is with the 1-22 Infantry
1st. PLT. 4th ID from Ft.Hood. We got to talk for 10
minutes this round and the phone was real clear. It sounded like
he was right here with us. He said he had just got in from some
raids they had done and was very tired. But everything went well
and everyone was okay. The wind was blowing there and he said
they were getting sand blasted. And then laughed and said, "
You know Mom, like the wind and dirt blows in west texas but just
a little harder." He seemed to be in good spirits and
sounded good. He asked for his cd player and cd's and gator aid.
He also said the phone would come back around to them in 3 weeks.
He got to talk to his Dad for the first time since he has been
gone. And that was so wonderful. My husband had a stroke in 1996
and has been disabled since. And it was such a blessing for the
two of them to get to talk for a few minutes. Well just wanted to
share this with everyone. And I have everyone of our Troops in
prayer everyday and also their family's. God Bless Our Troops
& All The Family's..........
July 27, 2003
I got to talk to my husband for an hour yesterday, it was so wonderful. He is in Charlie Co 1-22 and his platoon is in Mosul. He said they put in AT&T phones so he can talk for longer periods of time, I just have to remember to recharge his card after every call. He had gone for about a month without any packages and he got them all the other day, 10 packages and about 15 letters, he said it felt like Christmas! We are both glad to at least have a time frame for his return, the rumors of homecoming dates that changed every day were driving us both crazy. In a strange way this deployment has been good for him, he told me yesterday that he knew he was going to be ok because God was listening to all of the prayers that were being said for him, this coming from a man who in the 11 years we have been married has mentioned anything about God maybe twice. Thanks so much for your updates, I am saving them all for him so he can read them when he comes home.
July 25, 2003
Hi,my husband is a sgt in B
co 1-22 in bayji and I got a phone call from him this week
and he sounded pretty good. I was worried at first because he had
been calling every 3 days or so and I hadn't heard from him in 2
weeks. He said he went to town to pull guard. His shoulder came
out of place again. He said they almost sent him home but
decided to keep him and let it heal up again (the doctor told him
2 yrs ago he needed surgery but he wanted to wait till our son
was walking so he had a chance to hold him and he still hasnt
fixed it). He said another soldier and him were walking on the
side of the road when for some reason the other soldier looked
down and they were walking next to a land mine. He said he knows
he will be looking at the ground more often. He said keep sending
the kool-aid,lots of magazines, and said he would prefer
slim-jims instead of beef jerky, oh not to mention the whole time
he has been there he wants me to send a picture of his car,lol.
Im very proud of him and all of the other soldiers that are
working so hard. My son is only 2 but he is great support when I
start to cry he gives me a big hug says, "mom
okay?",and then yells "daddy come home", its so
cute that he makes me start laughing.
July 24, 2003
Not only did I get a letter from
my husband today from A Co, 1-22 INF BN, but I also got a
phone call! What a day! His letter was dated the 13th
of July. I can't believe how fast it got to me! He
said that he is doing good and that he is getting all of my
letters and packages. He also told me that they do not have
very much free time to write home. He asked for koolaid,
underwear, foot powder, tuna, and canned
food. He asked about his two girls (one he hasn't met yet) and told me that he thinks of us all of the time! ..... We only were able to talk for 5 minutes, but you will not get any complaints from me as he has been able to call about once a week lately. It is always so sweet to hear his voice and to get letters from him!
Today is July 23. This morning
the phone rang and a voice on the other end said,"Happy
Anniversary. Mom I love you." Well needless to say the tears
fell. It was my son in Bayji with B-Co. 1-22 4th Id out of
Fort Hood. He said he was doing good and had gotten the
package I sent on July 8th. So it took it 2 weeks to get to him.
He said everything I sent got there in good shape. He also said
all the guys were doing okay. And to tell me to send more jerky.
I sent extra so my son can share with those who don't get much
mail. There are two guys with him there that were in Korea with
him, and I have already spoiled them while they were in Korea.
They don't have family's to send them anything. All in all he
said everything was good and they were all okay. He also said the
phone would rotate back to them on Monday, I am not sure if is
their Monday or ours here in the USA. The connection we had was
much clearer this time. And we got to talk for about 15 mins.
Then he had to go and get ready for gate guard. I am so thankful
they get to call home. It helps to hear them.
July 23, 2003
Just had a nice 10-minute talk
with our son who is 1-22, B Co., attached to 3-66 AR in Baji.
This connection was clear, just some wind noise causing
problems. He says they are scheduled to go to Tikrit in the
near future for a short leave (I think he
said 3-day leave). Right now they still don't have electricity, although he's heard they
are scheduled to get a generator sometime soon. They are pulling patrols to enforce
curfew, and standing guard at "the" gas station in town about once a week. He says the kids are great in town--the soldiers will give them some dinars to go buy them a soda, or the kids will bring sodas to the guys while they are standing guard and sell them. He also said that he's tried a couple of the food stands in town--one selling some "sandwiches" and the other some baked chicken--and both tasted GREAT. (Much better than the MREs they are still eating).
He asked for powdered drink mixes, canned meats (even Spam tastes good there, he says), and individually wrapped candies to give the kids. He also asked for books, although one of the other guy's parents are sending a series that Tim is reading, too.
The biggest problem is that he still isn't getting his packages--only one since he went in at the end of May. He said some guys drove down to Tikrit yesterday, and still no
packages came back with them for him. We'll just have to keep sending, and praying they get through, I guess.
July 20, 2003
I received a short letter from
my nephew 4th ID (B-1/22). The letter was dated
26/June/03, postmarked 7/4/03, he includes the Iraqi time and
CDT. He made it short as he said he was trying to write to as
many family and friends as he could. He likes to draw so he
asked me for sketching pads and lead and color pencils. And at
the end he writes in big letters SEND STUFF please anything. His
Mom got a call from him and said he was fine & he was more
specific about what he wants, beef jerky, hard candies, raman,
etc. No telling how he is now but it was great hearing from him.
My son who is with charlie 1-22 called this afternoon around noon, I was so happy to hear from him said they are still at the palace in Tikrit. Told me its like july 4th fireworks everyday. Said he was doing ok but wanted more food like ravaolli in the can that you just pull open and vienna sausage. I said how do you heat it he said I eat it cold! He wanted to know all about home and everyone. He said he has had a couple close calls, told me to send more pictures of the family, and more socks! I guess they throw them away! He said he has lost a lot of weight! And he is looking forward to coming home whenever that will be. He asked me if America still knew their was a war going on? I told him most of America does. It made me sad to hear him ask that. I think they think since their is no press everyone has forgotten them! We were able to talk about 40 minutes, he was giving his card to some other Soldiers so they could call home, you can only use ATT phone cards sam's club is the best deal around. God Bless our all of them.
Our son from A/1-22 of 4ID called at 2:30 AM our time and talked to his Dad for the first time since boarding the bus at Fort Hood in April heading for the plane. He said it was really hot but that he was healthy and doing okay. Bless his heart he's a soldier thru and thru and never complains. He is a newlywed who got married at the end of December but who loves what he's doing and is planning on bringing one of his friends home to New York to live when they ETS. He plans on being stateside in mid September - God willing, but has already said that if "the Uncle" needs him to stay he will. God bless you for helping the families and friends ot the "IVY" stay informed, without you a lot of people would be guessing, worrying and wondering.
I got another letter from my son
today who is with the 4ID Bravo co. 1-22. I am receiving
about 3 letters a week now. This last letter was dated 7-4. He
started out by saying "Happy Independence Day". He said
his day started out pretty rough as he was just starting back to
camp after a night of raids when he was dispatched to provide
security because one of another platoon's Bradley had got hit by
a land mine. He said that there were no serious injuries from the
explosion thankfully. He said had to do road checks and stopped a
truck hauling frozen chicken leg quaters and him and some of his
buddies bought some. He said that they roasted the chicken parts,
cooked some potatoes and even got a watermelon so the day ended
up pretty good. He said not to worry that he was fine and was
starting to adust really well. He said " Remember Mom I was
born to be a soldier and do this." Talk about a proud mother.
July 19, 2003
I would just like to write and
let you know that I got two letters today 7-17-03! It had been
about two weeks since getting one. One of the ones from today was
addressed specifically for my daughter. She was thrilled that
daddy had finally written her. It doesn't say much just that the
weather doesn't change there and it is very hot. He is with A.co
1/22. He also says that the time for the phone doesn't come
up that often as he would like, and their time on it is very
limited. He says they still don't have computers or anything of
that nature to have other ways of contacting us. This last
letters that we got were post dated June 29.
July 17, 2003
I heard from my son, he's a medic,
4th In, 1/22. I sent him some playing cards in one of
the packages I mailed to him. Some of the guys were using his
cards one day. Well, I guess he went outside to have a
cigarette, just then one of the guys called him over to give him
his cards back. Just as he walked away from the spot he was
in, a grenade was thrown right where he was standing. He
said everyone hit the ground. He now calls them his
"lucky" cards. If not for them, he might not be
so lucky! He now thanks me very much for sending them. Of
course, I asked him to tell me what was going on with him, so he
had to say, "This is why I don't like to tell you things
Mom, I know right now your going crazy!" He's right, I
am! It seems to be all about luck over there now and that
has me VERY worried about all of them.
July 16, 2003
My husband is with A-CO 1-22.
Last Thursday I received 6 letters from him ranging in dates from
June 20-June 26. They were all very interesting, explaining what
he does over there. One of his stories in the letter stated
that he had been stung by a scorpion, but after a night at the
hospital and several days on medicine he was feeling
better. That was very scary to hear, although he wrote he
thought I would find that story funny since he got stung in the
butt! He is living in Tikrit, and said it is just really
hot. He has gone on several raids and pulls guard duty a
lot. Then on Friday Morning at 7:30, I received a call from
him. We got to talk for 17 minutes. He said him and
some other guys went out one day and found a phone to use. It was
very nice to hear from him after a long time. He just
requested some more items for his care packages. He said he
would love food, summer sausage, crackers, candy, and anything
that doesnt come in an MRE. He has also requested a CD
player and a Game Boy. I got this at Wal-Mart. They have
some games that are pretty cheap, you just have to buy lots of
batteries. I was also told by a Vet. that the best
thing he received from his wife on deployment was a voice
recorder. So I bought a tape player, with some tapes and I
am recording what I do everyday and I will send that to him along
with new tapes so he can send them back to me. He said he
has no idea when they are coming home, they only hear rumers but
that is exactly what they are just rumors. So everyone just
stay strong, and keep praying for the safe return of our
My son called at 3:40 this morning. He is 4ID 1/22 HHC IN BN. He had 3 minutes to talk. He is in Tikrit still, guarding detainees with the rest of the platoon. They pick up trash every morning, just as they did in Ft. Hood (we laughed!). They were involved in one of the raids where one of the most-wanted was being looked for, but no one was found. His platoon has been shot at several times, but no one was hit. The only person injured so far was one soldier who cut his hand on some glass while picking up trash. They have been near a couple of the fire fights and have watched tracers go overhead. He has been sending letters every week or every other week and was upset that none have been received. He said the last several have been really redundant because he knew we haven't gotten any. He thanked us all for the packages we've sent and just needs more dried fruit and drink mix. He sounded upbeat and not as tired as when I've talked to him before.
We finally received a letter
from our B-Co 1-22 Pfc. soldier from Bayji written 29 June.
He said he had just received a month's worth of mail and
packages and he was so happy and grateful for the contents. Many
letters ago we'd sent a questionnaire about his living conditions
and daily life which he answered.
"Mess hall? ...... MRE or T-rations (platoon sized MRE food)
Shower? ..... Solar showers and it's a hike to fill them up.
Air conditioning? ..... I wish.
Electricity?...... No, we live in a cluster bombed warehouse.
Running water?......not where we sleep
PX?....... It's a shipping container open 6-9 pm, stocked about once a month.
Laundry?.......Like the solar showers, it's a hike and the washing machine is a garbage can, the dryer is the sun.
We asked about interactions with the Iraqis: " Yes, we sometimes guard the gas station in town and chat with the locals; we get invited home for dinner, to marry their daughters, etc. The kids are feral, but funny. Also do limited shopping at the market in Bayji. We are in a very hostile area, the Fedayeen and newcomer Al-Quaeda guys force the locals to do pretty wild things, sometimes, so, as pleasant as I am, I try to keep it professional so I can make it home to be pleasant to Americans. He mentioned that some local food had caused a case of Montezuma's revenge, but they are calling it " the Fedayeen Funk."
Typical Day?...... Patrol downtown Bayji 22:30-04:30 , enforcing curfew, traffic control at Hwy 1( lemme see what you've got in your car), sleep from 0600 to whenever I start to drown in my own sweat, wake up and mope around until the evening patrol, raid, TCP ( traffic control point) or perimeter observation.
So Bob, use as much or little of this as you wish. We'd asked very specific questions. Hope the mail keeps moving. He said the satellite phone had cycled away from them, but they were expecting another turn soon. HIs letter was upbeat and forceful. Good to know that the mail broke free.
July 14, 2003
Received two letters from my son today. He is with ACO, 1-22. One of the letters was dated June 22 the other July 3. The letter from June contained photos he had taken and had developed over there. Oh he looked so good, better than I had been thinking. One photo showed where he had slept while pulling guard duty in Mosul, on the ground. Makes a Mom just want to take the first flight over there and get her son and come home,lol.
We received a call from my son
this morning at 4:30am. Our son is a SPC with C Co.,
1-22 In. He had been out in the desert
around Mozul. They are now in Tikrit. We were so
excited to hear from him and it took me awhile to wake up from
such a dead sleep and think of all the things I wanted to ask
him. We got to speak to him about 2 mins, then the phone
went dead. He called back and we spoke for about 2 more
minutes and that was it. It had been 6 weeks since we had
received a letter and longer since we had spoken to him. I
was getting pretty worried about him He said that he was
doing fine and it is very hot there. Around 120 degrees
every day. He mentioned something about one of the Bradleys
being hit and some of his unit being injuried and sent home. (Ed
Note: that happened several weeks ago)
He has received all of the packages that I have sent and many others from friends and family. He was very greatful and pleased that so many people are thinking of him. I asked him if he needed anything and he said that he was doing ok and really didn't need anything right now.
He said that they are still running into resistance everywhere and are still taking shots around them. My son was a gunner on a Bradley and he has now been moved to a dismount. He said that they were training a gunner to take his place. He was scheduled to get out in June, but with the war and all he was kept longer...... We are ready for him to come home and can hardly wait for the day.
July 12, 2003
Today is July 11th.......And
what a wonderful way to be awaken in the morning by a phone call
from my son. He is in Bayji with the 4th ID B-Co 1-22 IN BN
1st PLT out of Ft. Hood. I was so happy to just
hear his voice. The phone connection was not great.It was like
talking on a 2 way radio. We only talked about 5 minutes ,but he
said he was fine and the food was a little better now and they
had got cots to sleep on. He has got my 2 letters yesterday that
where sent the first part of June. And was waiting on his package
I sent last week. He has been in Bayji since the last of May. It
is so wonderful just to hear his voice and to know he is okay. He
also said it was very very hot there. But he was okay with it
since he was born and raised in West Texas. He said everyone is
asking for kool-aid and gater aid. Canned meats and jerky. God
Bless All Our Sons and Daughters In Iraq. Our Love and Prayers
are With All of You. Oh! he also said the guys in his platoon are
July 11, 2003
We just got off the phone with our son B-Company / 1-22 assigned right now to the 3-66th Tank Battalion. He says that they are located in Bayji. We had to search Encarta in-depth, but found it to be north of Tikrit on the Tigris River. He was asking for games for his Game Boy because there are times when he has a lot of time on his hands. He arrived in Iraq at the beginning of June, (transferred in from another division) and he has only gotten one package, and no letters. (And that package was from grandparents; he hasn't received any that we sent!) He didn't say much about what was happening there, just had a lot of questions about personal concerns here at home, since he didn't have a lot of time to get ready before he went over. The first time he called, we weren't home. The second time, he got cut off. This time, we didn't get cut off.
My husband is part of the 4th ID 1-22 B Co in Bayji Iraq. He is a Bradley driver for the 3rd platoon. I got to talk to him on the satellite phone the other day, and that was awesome! He sounded like he was right up the street from me. He is doing fine. He has lost weight, he says. He says he comes back from guard duty or other days work and he is soaked from head to toe. We have a 10 month old son who turns one on Aug. 23. His daddy last saw him on April 4th, when he was only 7 months old. Needless to say he has missed a lot. I sent a picture of our son in a talking picture frame with the sound of our son speaking jibberish. I don't know if he has received it yet, but I thought that was a neat idea. Yesterday was our 2 year wedding anniversary, so it was a very tough day. I pray that the Lord continues to watch over my wonderful husband and every other soldier that is over there. Bless all the families as well.
July 8, 2003
I got a call from my son, a
sergeant in B Co, 1-22 Inf Battalion, about 6am on Saturday, July
5th! What a wonderful blessing it was to hear his voice! The time
delay not withstanding, we were able to have a great conversation
and I was able to say those most important words "I love
you" before the phone cut off. They finally rigged
some type of shower device for occasional use. It is so hot there
that he has lost over 20 pounds. The soldiers are finding it
difficult to eat more than one meal a day because of the
heat. I send him 2 to 4 shoebox size packages every week.
Requests have come in for Spam, tuna, canned meat, tea and
lemonade mixes (they make the reclaimed treated water more
potable), snacks, and especially noodles in
a cup. He said it's much easier to add hot water to reconstitute these popular and inexpensive foods that come packaged that way. I've also sent him the Sunday paper Sports and Comics sections each week to share with his unit. He said that his unit has a "community box" where soldiers put the extras from their home packages so that other soldiers can take from it. It's a good way of sharing especially for those soldiers who may not get packages from home or on a regular basis. I am in continual prayer for the safe return of our soldiers. I pray for God's comforting grace for the families who have lost a loved one and share tears with them. We are one big family in this and need each other's prayers.
July 4, 2003
The phone rang at 6:23 am, it had been over 3 weeks since I heard from my husband which is with Charlie Company 1-22 from Ft. Hood...and I heard a broken "hello," it was him. It was a great surprise and a wonderful feeling waking up to his voice. He sounded like he was doing good, maybe tired but good. He was glad to receive his packages and letters I have been sending him. I haven't heard too much from him but he said he was busy doing things such as check points and that sort of stuff. We talked for about 15 mins, it was nice to be able to talk that long...every other phone call was a minute or 5 minutes.
July 3, 2003
This is the first time I am
contacting you, but I have been keeping up with your site since
my fiance was shipped off in March. I received a
phone call from him this morning at 5:30am. He is with the A
Co 1-22 Inf. He claims they are still in Tikrit and he is
being careful. He sounded the best he has sounded since he
left. He was in high spirits and said that he should be
able to use the phone every 3 days now as long as he isn't out
doing something........... He also told me to stop sending
babywipes, but canned food would be much appreciated like soups,
chef boyardee, etc. Other than that we spent the rest of
the 10 minutes we had saying how much we loved one another and
missed each other. He also wanted to make sure I was going
to still marry him when he got back. I responded by telling
him that he didn't need to worry about that because nothing was
going to stop me from marrying him. I guess while they are
out there so many fears pop up that are normally shot down by
reassurance and out there they can't get the reassurance as quick as they
Hi, just wanted to let you know that I received a phone call this morning at 9:23 am. It was my boy friend, he is with A.Co 1/22. He called Sunday morning also at 1:30 am. He sounds in good spirits, and these last 2 phone calls that I got have been the most clear. Sounds like I'm talking to him in the same room. He got 2 packages today that I sent him two weeks ago. I think that's about it. Other than that he just said to please keep the letters and packages coming, that is what gets him through everything there. Take care, A Soldier's Girl.
The phone rang at 1:00 a.m. it was my Soldier calling from Tikrit 1-22 out of Ft. Hood. It was the first time I have heard his voice in 3 months, the connection was not the greatest but I could hear most everything, he asked for more meat! and packages. He said send marlboro's!!! and any canned meat like vienna sausage, beef jerkey summer sausage, even spam! And he wanted more pictures from home, he sounded a little tired but good, I was so thankful for that call. He was trying to tell me something when we were cut off! I told him I loved him the first thing, he is my youngest son, god bless them all. Even being cut off is better than no phone call at all.
July 2. 2003
Heard from my son this morning at 6:00am. He is ACO, 1-22 4ID. Still in Mosul but may be moving to Tikrit........... Had electricity turned on and now has a fan where he sleeps. He sounded very well and wants to thank everyone for their support. .... His 20th birthday is Saturday, July 5 so I hope he gets his packages.
I received my second letter from my son today, I was as excited as you can get, he is with charlie1-22 out of Fort Hood, they are at the palace in Tikrit. says he is doing ok, and for me not to worry, says he should have a good tan when he gets home. Mail is coming in he said he got a couple letters and a package in one day. Told me to send more packages especially beef jerky! I guess that goes fast. They are seeing action he said. Told me he gives the Iraqi kids all his wrapped candy, I guess i had better send more. Keep praying for all the boys fighting in IRAQ!
We finally received a phone call
from our son at 12:30 AM Monday morning. It
was so good to hear his voice! He is a Calvary Scout with the HHC 1-22. He is
located "in/around" Tikrit. He asked us if we had heard about the money and jewels being found during a raid a while back. He was there! It has been very rewarding for us to see and hear (from his letters and this phone conversation) him mature and grow more confident. He had written us a letter during his first "engagement" and actually wrote us a good-bye, in case he didn't make it back from the mission. It was very emotional. Although the danger is obviously still there, his confidence has certainly grown. A real testament to the quality of our soldiers, and the leadership there. I just harp on him in every letter, to remain constantly vigilant. (I'm sure the commanders do the same). We have received 4 letters in the last 5 days. The mail is certainly moving faster. Our son had a very unique request in one of his letters. (Our son is a very good golfer, and wants to play college golf when he returns.) He asked us to send a 5 iron, and golf balls! I was surprised at first, but then knowing our son, I can see him pounding golf balls when he is not chasing "bad guys". We a large package the next day, which included a 5 iron (maybe we should have sent a sand wedge?) and golf balls. We also sent two cameras. I told him we want lots of pictures. Can you imagine the stories he will be able to tell his children and grandchildren?
Hooah for every one of our soldiers! May they all make the absolute best of this, and every situation, and stay safe!
June 30, 2003
What a week! I got 3 phone calls and 8 letters this week; dated from April 20th to June 18th. Mail is definitely doing better. My husband is with the 401st MP company and he sounded a lot better than the last time we talked (right after the memorial service of one of his soldiers). He lives in a palace and the water and electricity are flowing again so he is happy. He has received only 12 of the 75 letters and 6 of the 10 packages but says when he gets a package he is king for the day. He works mids and sleeps in the day but isn't getting much because of the heat. .... He is attached to the 1-22 and says they know how to take care of soldiers.
June 29, 2003
My parents recvd a call from my son yesterday. I was not at home. He is with 4ID 1/22 HHC IN BN. He called once and had about a minute and a half to talk and the phone kept fading in and out and finally cut off. He called back a little later too. He said he has recvd all the packages we've sent and is requesting additional dried fruit and drink mix. He has sent letters to us, but we haven't recvd any yet. He said he isn't in any danger at the moment. He sounded tired and much older on our answering machine
June 28, 2003
The phone rang this morning at 1:30am and it was my son calling. He is 4ID, 1-22, ACo, 2nd Platoon. Had only 5 minutes to talk, his Sgt. Major had a satellite phone and was allowing everyone to make a 5 minute phone call. His Dad answered the phone but did allow me my 2 1/2 minutes. There is nothing better than the sound of your son's voice!!! He has been getting his letters and packages and sounded very upbeat. Just wanted to share my joy
June 27, 2003
I got my first letter from my son with the 1/22nd, A Co, 2nd Platoon- I got one quck 5 minute call on June 1st and he said that he was healthy, starting to receive some mail and for us not to worry about him. Better said then done. Today's letter said he felt this deployment may be one of the best things that has happened to him, it has forced him to look at himself and his future. He has befriended a 7 year old Iraqi boy that he would like to bring home to give him a future - this is from a 22 year old newly married young man. The letter was dated May 30th and was such a gift to his Dad and I. God Bless the 4th ID.
June 25, 2003
I got a real treat yesterday, a letter a phone call and an email from my husband who is with C CO 1-22 INF. He sounds good, he is getting most of the packages I send in about 2 to 2-1/2 weeks and the letter I got yesterday was only about 3 weeks old. He asked for lots of powdered drink mix, brown shirts, socks and coffee, he has a coffee press with him and I think he is probably the only soldier in his company who is drinking gourmet coffee, but its the little things that count! I want to thank you for your updates, it is good to read about other families who are hearing from their soldiers and I get a lot of good ideas on things to send my husband
June 21, 2003
My son is with 4ID CoC 1-22 inf Bn. So far I have received 3 letters and two short phone calls, but I love every word I receive. He says that it's very difficult to get any mail out of Iraq but that he has started receive our mail and packages. Last I talked to him June 12(for 4 minutes) he said that he couldn't tell me where he was, that he was doing okay, but that things weren't easy. He asked for the same things they all request, beef jerky, powder Gatorade, and to the mom/wife asking where to get it, I got it from Costco if you have one of those close by.
June 16, 2003
To the mother who heard from her son (4th ID, 1-22 soldier in Mosul): My soldier (1-22) is currently in Mosul also. I was so glad to see your message. It feels a little closer to home when there's specific information regarding a particular troop, their whereabouts, etc. I got a call last night, got to talk for almost 45 minutes! It was nice to hear his voice again (it had been a long while)! He indicated there are very few (about 30) soldiers left in Mosul. He said they are still dealing with some action/fighting, mostly at night. They are talking October - for a time frame of returning home. Take care and God Bless Our Soldiers
June 15, 2003
My son called this morning and we were able to talk for about 15 minutes. His platoon is the last one from 1-22 that is left in Mosul. There is only about 100 soldiers waiting to use the phones now and the cost is 40cents a minute so he said he may get to call more often. They have an air conditioned rec room set up with a pool table and small TV which gets Fox News. They may be adding computers so he will have access to email. The soldiers love getting letters and packages and are requesting magazines,books, and drink mixes. I guess they are tired of drinking just water. He sounded very good and his strength and courage continue to amaze me for someone not yet 20 years old. Wanted to share my news with you and others who may have soldiers in 1-22. Thank you again for all your support and hard work, it is people like you that keep me going.
June 14, 2003
Today (6/13) I received a ltr
from my nephew (B co 1/22), postmarked 5/19.
Sometime back he got to go into one of Saddam's Palaces and he
says it makes him sick how Saddam lived sourrounded with wealth
while his people lived in fear and starvation. He says the
poverty he has seen is terrible. He writes that he's keeping busy
in the place they are housed by using the white walls as a
canvas. He was given permission to do a mural and he's drawing
helmets of each NFL team. He talks about the heat and how
sleepy it makes them but cannot sleep because of the flies and
asks for a fly swatter.
Hello Bob, my husband is with A Co., 1-22. After nine weeks, I was finally able to talk to him today! We were only able to talk for 2 minutes or so, but it was better than nothing!!! When I asked him how he was doing, all he would say is, "I'm alive!". He asked for more chew and to tell everyone not to send him any more deodorant. He said that they are being told that they will be coming home in March, 2004. He also told me that he didn't know when he would be able to call again. I told him I was sending a package to him today and he said that it would get to him in about 20 days. Not bad if you ask me! But it was nice to finally hear his voice and to tell him that I loved him.
June 13, 2003
I finally received a phone call
today from my son who is in Bco. 1-22 4th ID. He said that
they were now living in one of the unfinished palaces in the town
of Baji which was alot better that the hole he had been living in
for the last month. He said he was doing alright just really
HOT!!! He requested food not candy. He said they were able to get
candy at times but real food such as prepared cannned item were
really a treat. He said to please keep the mail coming he was
just now starting to get his letters and the packages that we had
sent him over the last 6 weeks. He said the mail was really slow
coming out of Iraq so please keep the mail coming even if we
didn't hear from him. God Bless all our soldiers and lets hope
for a safe and speedy return of all of them.
June 11, 2003
I emailed you yesterday about my son's unit, C/1-22, being hit on Saturday. He called my daughter in law today. He is okay. They were hit with rpg's. Two of the soldier's were hurt pretty bad, one more serious than the other. My son had just started walking away from the group when it happened. He was knocked down and received bumps and bruises and a cut on his arm. He said everyone was badly shaken and confused for a bit. He also said that during the day the people (Iraqi's) shake their hands and pat them on the back, but when night comes they attack our guys. My heart is filled with so much pride and love for our soldiers. I try and write to each of the soldiers with my son's unit. I like to think of them as my family. You know it really makes me so angry, our soldiers are risking their lives to help people achieve a better life and they turn so ferocious against them. Maybe it's not for me to understand. Thanks for taking the time to read this. I'm just another worried mom.
I hit the jackpot
yesterday! We received a total of 10 letters from my
son. 4th ID. 1/22 Alpha CO. A little of what
he had to say: He is in one of the Palaces right now.
Said it's pretty peacful out there at night. A nice cool
breeze, he can hear the water from the river and the church music
echoing across from the city. He said it's real relaxing at
night. He is still doing patrols during the day. He
said although he see's his share of "crap", this place
he is in now kinda takes him away from all the crazy stuff going
on. He actually made it sound very beautiful. He
thought telling me this would make me rest a little better.
(it does) He said while he was on Patrol, it was more like
a walk along the river as everyone was still asleep. He
said the clouds were purple and blue. Said that moments
like that made him forget where he was.
My son told me he has done alot of thinking the past month. He said for the first time, he can actually say, he is proud of himself, that he feels like a man. He said between me and the Army, we have raised "one hell" of a guy. He went on to tell me how I have made him strong through all of this. When things got bad, and he put his head down, he could hear me telling him to pick it back up. When he thought he couldn't accomplish something, he heard me telling him he could accomplish anything he wanted to. He told me how he felt bad the last 3 years for not being home for me when things got hard, but also said, he realized it was okay when he remembered how strong I was, and how I always held my head up high.
I will take a lot of credit for my sons strength, but I have the Army to thank for helping my son become a man!
June 10, 2003
I received a letter from my Son on Monday 6-9-03, it's the first one I've received since he's been in Iraq. Needless to say, it made my day. He's in the 4th I D, 1st Brigade, 1-22, HHC. He's not living in the greatest of conditions, that's for sure. Hopefully by now things have improved some. It was written May 23rd, the same day I received his last phone call. In the second paragraph he talks about some money that was seized and a guy being detained. He's referring to an article I sent him about a Baath Party Leader who was captured trying to flee in his car near Tikrit, he had thousands of U.S. Dollars with him at the time. As it turns out, my Son's Squad is the one who captured him.
June 8, 2003
I finally got a call from my
husband last night. It has been 8 weeks since I have talked
to him and it was the most wonderful 1 minute I have had.
He is a sniper in A-CO 1/22 4ID. I of course forgot
all of the questions I wanted to ask him, but he said he has been
moving around the entire time and that they are finally settling
down. (I forgot to ask where they were) They are
setting up phones for them to use, so he said he should be able
to call more. He is with scouts right now and said everyone
including himself are doing good. Although I don't think he
would have even told me if he was in any danger. But it was
great to finally hear his voice. He said that he had no
idea when he was coming back. I have slowly been getting his
mail, it has been out of order, but at least it is
something. He said that they are getting all of their mail
and packages now, and he knows that the mail coming from them is
very slow getting here. I know a lot of my friends have
been getting calls lately so if you
have someone from 1/22 hang in there, you should be getting some soon
June 6, 2003
I forgot to tell you a little story my nephew wrote about (4th ID, 1/22). He and some of the other guys got $7 together, went to a local ranch and bought a goat, turkey and chickens. They killed, skinned/took off feathers, gutted and dug a hole and had a Bar B Q. He said they had a great time. I guess they are learning to appreciate the little things including having salt.
June 5, 2003
Our son is with 4Th ID, 1-22 IN BN and has been in Turkit for about 3 weeks. We received mail, 2 letters two weeks ago and a phone call two Fridays ago. He sounded in good mood. All the people in his group were fine. Said the bugs and sand were bad.He only received one package so far and we know a total of 6 have been sent. New mail seems to be getting through, old mail is still coming. His group, in maintenance, is very busy. They have water and ok places to stay. Keep sending mail and especially pictures
I received an email from the
rear commander of the 1/22 Inf.....I had to call
him, It seems as though my son was on a patrol early this
morning (Wednesday), and about 5 soldiers including him were
attacked by an RPG.....He is with 1/22 B company........My
son is OK...Thank God...He received shrapnel wounds to his
hands...I was told they bandaged him up and sent him back to his
June 4, 2003
I was in a very good mood this
morning until I read the news about the Soldier who was killed
from the 4th Infantry. My heart is pounding right
now. I know bad news travels fast, but just the same, if
it's not my Soldier, there is another mother out there who did
loose theirs. Bob, my son is in the 4th ID 1/22 IN.
If there are any other parents, wifes, or family members who
would like to talk, please give them my email address.
I think we all could use as much support as possible right
My son called me last night. It was such a happy moment for all of us. Of course, I didn't give the phone up to anyone! He was in very good spirits. He didn't say where he was, just that he was on guard duty in a building. He left the Palace a month ago. They have a refridgerator so he said I could send cold things, but not to send anything that needed electricity. Although they have electricity, he was not able to have any personal use of it at this time. He has received almost all of my packages so the mail is getting to them much better. He asked me if I wanted to hear something funny. Of course I said yes. He then said, well, laughing, this call is costing you about $5.00 or more a minute. Then he and a few guys in the background started laughing. I of course didn't think it was so funny! I assured him he was well worth it! So yes, his humor is still there. We talked for only a few minutes then the call was disconnected.
My son is with HHC 1/22nd INF
BN 4ID, got an e-mail the other day, seems to be doing okay.
He is helping to rebuild the hospital in Tirkrit. The media seems
to forget our soldiers. This is my sons second time over there,
he was in the Gulf War. I hope they will all be home soon. God
June 3, 2003
.......its a shame that the news agencies seem to have forgotten our soldiers still in Iraq........I am thankful for every little bit of Information you find.....I hope the mail situation continues to improve.....the "outgoing" mail is terriable....My Son is with the 4th ID 1/22 INF B company...He has sent quite a few letters, that I have not recieved......He said he has "requests" in the letters, and I would gladly send his requests if I recieved the letters to tell me what they are.....He relayed this info to me in an 8 minute phone call from Iraq on last friday evening.....His unit now has a satallite phone......My continued prayers for all of our Soldiers, and I hope the time passes quickly, So we can bring them ALL home soon.
June 2, 2003
I finally received a phone call from my husband today after 7 weeks since the last call. He is in A Co 1/22. He said that he is in Tikrit and has mostly been doing a lot of patrols. It seems that mail to there is faster than coming back home. He has gotten most of the letters that I have sent and all of the packages, also. I am assuming that they now have a pay phone to call from because it was a collect call. It was so wonderful to hear his voice again!
Yesterday was a very good day,
and today was even better!!! I received a letter from my
son (who is in Company A, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry)
yesterday morning. It was dated, 4-27-03. It took
over 1 month to get to me! He said he is VERY tired.
At the time of the letter he was on guard duty on top of the
palace. He said he had been up for 49 hours at that point
and had 2 more hours to go. He then wrote me the next
morning as it was too dark to write anymore. When he wrote
the next am, he said 30 minutes before he was to be relieved, the
power was cut off. He said there was a couple vehicles that
approached the gates along with some Iraqis by foot. One of
the Iraqis set off a trip flare on the other side of the
palace. He said it was like a rush as it was black outside
and all you could hear was gun shots going off everywhere.
Nobody was hurt though, thank God! Because of that, he was
on guard the rest of the night, then managed to get 3 hours of
This morning my daughter answered a collect call from him, hearing him say who he was. Once she accepted the call, it disconnected. I was so upset. The phone rang again, it was him calling from a calling card. Once I answered, the call got disconnected right away. You can only imagine how devastated I was! Of course I have been sitting by the phone all day not letting anyone on it! Much to my surprise, I checked my email a few minutes ago and there was an email from him! I can't tell you how "happy" I am right now. He said he is doing fine. He has received all my mail and the first "BIG" box I sent him. He hasn't gotten the smaller ones I've sent, but assured me he was getting my mail. He said that their mail is slower getting to us, but it will also get better. He also said, PLEASE send more snacks! <smile> I guess he ate all the ones I sent him. Just wanted to share this great news with you Bob!!!
June 1, 2003
My Son called me by satallite phone last night. He is with the 1/22nd 4th ID.....He sounded well, and said the mail going out of camp was very slow....He told me he sent 5 letters to me, but I have recieved only 1 so far.....Outgoing mail is very slow.... Mail is getting to him in a timely manner,it is taking 2-3 weeks based on what He told me. .....He said it was HOT, and he had no idea how long they would be there....He did tell me they have a mini PX set up not far from where they are.....Needless to say I was glad to hear his voice.....
May 31, 2003
I have heard from my son, he is in Tirkrit with the 1/22 HHC. He is a combat Medic. He is helping to rebuild the hospital there, he is doing okay. He wishes the mail would get out faster, they all long to hear from home.
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