Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A leader's worst nightmare becomes reality...

In May 2004 I sat in SEATAC airport waiting for my flight to Baltimore and utimately Iraq. It was my first deployment and one of the primary thoughts was what would I do if one of my soldiers died.

Late June 2006 beginning my second deployment I had the same thought...what am I going to do if one of my soldiers dies?

July 2009 that same thought inched its way forward into my mind.

4 November 2009 I suddenly had to face the question. My human intelligence collection NCO, SSG Amy Tirador, was found dead of non combat related injuries on FOB Caldwell.

SSG Tirador had joined the Army as a medic and had saved a soldier's life during her first deployment in 2004. She changed MOS's and become an intelligence NCO and soon joined 3-2 SBCT where she was assigned to the 209th MICO. During the deployment she was attached to 1-14 CAV and my section as my human intelligence collection NCO.

I still don't have an answer to that question I feared to face. Sometimes life punches you in the face and it takes a little while to get up. Thousands of miles away from my usual support structure it may take me awhile.