45 Years Old From Toledo, Ohio
Commander, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division
Since being deployed to the Diyala province of Iraq in November 2006, Col. David Sutherland, along with brigade Chaplain Maj. Charlie Fenton, pictured on the right, has made it a point to visit every wounded soldier and say goodbye to each and everyone of his men who've lost their life. Four of his soldiers died on one day in April 2007 and the bad news arrived at his office in waves -- a knock on the door, a note handed in by an aide, heads bowed, knowing glances exchanged. Aides say Sutherland walks to the mortuary affairs tent at his base and embraces the dead bodies of his men. "I hug all my fallen soldiers", said Sutherland. "They are my own".
Diyala province is one of the worst places in Iraq. Public beheadings of Iraqi police, tribal wars, sectarian wars and al-Qaida. "I didn't come here thinking it'd be easy. No one told me, 'You're gonna get 9 hours of sleep a night and you're not gonna lose soldiers'. But I believe this is the place for me."
"As a soldier, I want to be here on the ground," he said. "As an American, I want it to end."
For more information about Col. Sutherland, visit this page.
These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived
This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. To find out more about Wednesday Hero, you can go here.
Heroes. I looooved that show. Didn't want to geek out about it, or spoil anything for CRSE, who's gonna watch it all together on tivo. But I loved that show. But the name is almost overused, and the show kind of looks pale and wan next to the real life heroes who appear in these posts, and on our TV screens, and the thousands of soldiers that they represent.
I heard on the radio, someone speaking about supporting the troops but not believing in the war is a kick in the teeth to every soldier out there. HUH? I'm not even one of the people saying we should just pull out completely and let the Iraqis figure it out. I think now that we have made the mess, stop trying to justify our being there. It's too late, we ARE there. Every ounce of energy should be focused on getting adequate equipment to the troops that are already there, taking care of the troops that are coming home wounded, and finding a way for us to bring them home honorably. To me that means we need to finish what we have started, and leave the Iraqis with some sort of stable structure.
But to say that I insult our soldiers by not thinking we should ever have been there in the first place? That is EXACTLY why they are fighting. So another people would have the right to disagree with government policies without fear. C'mere and let me kick YOU in the teeth, buddy.