Happy Thanksgiving from Afghanistan! Soldiers of the 1BCT 4ID Raider Brigade take a moment to wish their families and friends a Happy Thanksgiving all the way from Afghanistan. In our thoughts today and everyday! HOOAH!
Today we welcomed my son home after a 1-year deployment to eastern Afghanistan. I am thanking and praising God today for returning my son home safe to his wife and children! REJOICE! I am overflowing with joy!
There are no words to describe how I am feeling! Relieved, blessed, thankful, & joyous.
Thank you all for your support during his deployment. I could not have gotten it through it without all of you!
For everyone that is also welcoming their soldier home, let us remember that for each soldier that returns home from deployment, another soldier takes their place, and another family is missing their loved one.
Here is a heartfelt prayer I found to pray:
God of all goodness,
Look with love on those who wait for the safe return of their loved ones who serve in the armed forces of their country. In faith and hope, we turn to You for comfort. Grant that we may trust in Your mercy and send an angel to sustain us as we await their safe return.We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Stay Army Mom Strong, we are all in this together. God Bless.
Proud Army Mom of a Kiowa Warrior Helicopter Pilot
Sgt. 1st. Class Timmy lights up any room! He works at the Freedom Restoration Center on Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, an in-patient treatment facility for those who suffer from PTSD. Sgt. Timmy, a 2-year old yellow lab dog deployed to Afghanistan to help Soldiers who suffer from PTSD. Thank you Timmy for your service!
Gen. David Petraeus performing a re-enlistment ceremony at Camp Mike Spann (outpost in northern Afghanistan). 10th Mountain Div. To re-enlist while in a combat zone is amazing dedication from our Soldiers in an all volunteer Army!
?101st Airborne at Combat Outpost Bowri Tanah, Khost Province Afghanistan. Using HIIDE (Handheld Interagency Identity Detection Equipment), hand-held tri-biometric system out in the field, using iris, fingerprint, and facial recognition. Our Soldiers ROCK!
Restrepo is a film documentary by Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington. Filmed in Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley, this documentary focuses on a 15-man outpost named “Restrepo”, after a platoon medic that was killed in action. Restrepo was considered one of the most dangerous outposts in the U.S. Military.
This movie is the real deal. The film makers take you on the journey with 15 men of the 173rd Airborne brigade. You will feel like you are on the deployment with these Soldiers, who are dedicated to getting the job done.
When I first heard about Restrepo, I wanted to see it but was hesitant. With my son in Afghanistan, seeing this movie could be upsetting to me. I decided to go anyway with a couple of other Military Mom friends. I chatted with my son about it and he advised me to read the book “WAR” first, but I didn’t have time. In the book “WAR“, author Sebastian Junger gives an unforgettable portrait of these men under fire in Afghanistan’s Korengal Valley.
I went to the movie expecting to be very upset. We came prepared with Kleenix, knowing that tears could very well be part of this evening.
Restrepo can only be described as an excellent and tastefully done documentary about the worst parts of war. I could not take my eyes or attention from the 90-minute film. The courage, strength, and camaraderie of these Soldiers was nothing short of amazing. The filmmakers captured the experience of these Soldiers in such a way, that you really understand what it might be like at a remote combat outpost.
Restrepo gave me a glimpse into what our Soldiers experience in Afghanistan. Did I cry? I did tear up as the movie was winding down.
Go see Restrepo. It’s amazing. Check to see if it’s playing at a theater near you.
Using these Blackberry applications helps me communicate with my son at any time that he happens to be on the Internet. I don’t have to be at my computer which is a big relief. For example, one day I was out for a walk and had a chat with my son via my Blackberry while walking.
Without these Blackberry applications, I would miss out on chats like that. I never know when he will be online – all kinds of strange hours of the day and night so I like to be prepared!
- Facebook - If you and your Soldier have a Facebook account, you can subscribe via SMS to your Soldier’s status updates. This is cool because the moment my deployed son updates his Facebook status, I get a text message to my phone. From the text message, I can reply with “Like” to “Like” the status, or leave a comment. The advantage of “Like” is that I also get any subsequent comments that he or others make on his status. In order to receive any comments that follow, you must have the Facebook application on your Blackberry.
To set up Facebook SMS subscriptions, log into your Facebook account and go to Account >Account Settings. Click the Mobile tab. Once you have that set up correctly, go to your Soldier’s Facebook profile page. Under the profile picture, click “Subscribe via SMS”.If you set it up correctly, the next time your Soldier’s updates their Facebook status, you will get a text message to your smartphone!
- Email - There are many email applications you can use your Blackberry. I use both Yahoo and Gmail. You can download either to your smartphone. When my son sends me an email, I can read and reply to the email on my phone. It’s been a great convenience. Sometimes our Soldiers are busy so I like to reply right away in case he can’t get back to the computer for awhile. Following are links for more information:
- Google Talk - this is my favorite instant messenger! You can use this if you both have a Google mail account. Just log on from your phone and the “green dot’ tells you that your contacts are available and online. This is how I have chats in real time with my son when I am out and about.
- Yahoo Messenger – works like most instant messenger applications. You can use this if you both have Yahoo mail account. I use this one too. It’s nice to have a back up.
- Skype - if you have a Skype account, you can download it your Blackberry and use Skype mobile. This is new for Blackberry so I have not used it yet. Only the chat feature is available on your smart phone.
I hope this is helpful to you in some way. What other ways have you found to communicate with your Soldier via smart phone? Please share your ideas!
Typical day of operations at Forward Operating Base Salerno (eastern Afghanistan). Ever wondered what its like for a day at a Forward Operating Base in Afghanistan? This is what life is like for a lot of our troops. HOOAH! Our troops ROCK!
Take a tour of FOB Fenty in Jalalabad Afghanistan, with Sgt Masterson. Go by Volley Ball Courts, Laundry, Lodging, Latrines, Green Beans Coffee and more. Will give you an idea of how our Soldiers live at an FOB while deployed.
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Video is a little dated but this my friends, never gets old! Presenting, our National Anthem!