Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A Day Down Range (part 2)

Some of you seemed to enjoy my first post of candid shots and little tid-bits of info about life in the desert so I decided to add another episode.

In the first post I wrote about the Hummers we had to 'battle harden' we never did phase those out before I left however the new ones we saw were more like this. The glass in these was about 3" thick, bullet proof. I never had the benefit of the new model's
Hair Cut Day, in the heat you wanted a 'high & tight' so we did out own.
Here one of our guys was giving one of our radio operators a haircut

 Church services were well attended. It was interesting to see all the M-16's and light machine guns under the benches where we sat (if you were assigned a SAW or M-60 for example you carried it with you)
Pictured here is a young Marine being baptized (after services) by the Chaplains, in a box lined with plastic.

 Laundry was either handled in the shower (which was about half the time with me) or at a setup like this. The bladder you see was filled by a tank truck with river water and was used in the washing machine shown just behind in the shadows The water got very hot in the sun. Clothes wrung out by hand dried fully in about 15-20 min after being hung out.                                       
 The first camp I was at had laundry provided by private contracted Philippine women. After it was hit by a rocket and five of them killed the remaining women left and we did our own wash.



  1. Duke - i love these posts - they are some of your best and that is saying something!

    the baptizing in a box brought tears to my eyes...oh my eh? tears are streaming down my face right now...thanks buddy! i am supposed to be helping hubby bring 2x4s to the attic in a few mins...he will not understand the tears! but thank you so much for sharing that! balm to the soul!

    as for the laundry - i can't even imagine that your laundry women were killed. what you all must have experienced is bewildering.

    i said it before but i will say it again - thank you for your service, Sir. thank you very much.

    your friend,

  2. kymber, thanks I am glad you enjoy the post's, I will do more.
    Stephen, I guess I have a fall back, when ideas are slow I can dig out a few old war pictures.

  3. +1 on kymber's thank you for serving.

    Your Humvee pics reminded me of the WWII stories of guys stapling sandbags or pouring concrete on the front of M-4 Sherman tanks trying to avoid being redesignated "Spam in a Can".

  4. Odysseus, we used sandbags at first like they did in WWII and Viet Nam, our experience was while they worked good for rifle rounds and IED turned them into shrapnel.

  5. Excellent posts. These are very interesting. I just saw where your profile says you're a retired Seabee. My cousin and her husband both are Seabees also. It was quite humorous when my Mom called me and said she had joined up and would be in a construction battalion and that she wouldn't have to go overseas(according to the recruiter). I laughed and asked her if she knew what a C.B. was and had she ever seen the movie the "Fighting Seabees." she said yes and then I said, "hey Mom, get it, C...B... then there was a long pause. "Ohhhhh" she said. "I guess she'll be going to the desert" "Yep, Mom" Sure enough, a year later she was in the sandbox building a base.

  6. Hillbilly, when we went there is 2003-04 we were supposed to be doing bridge and airfield work but due to security problems we were re-assigned to spec-ops and MEF (Marine Expeditionary Force) I spent the first 4 months doing security work in a spec-ops base in N. Iraq and after that was sent to the MEF and did anything they did from convoys to security work.

  7. I love to see the real-life stuff. Thanks, Duke.

  8. Tough stuff, bud. Glad you made it backs. Thanks.