Saturday, 27 October 2007

Heeere’s SSgt Morris (another TEXAN)

LTC Phillips drafted, oops, requested another Sgt to the blog.

I will encourage, bribe, cajole, pester, beg the staff of Salerno Hospital, to send updates through LTC Phillips to the blog.
There is no limit to the amount of space we can fill. Hint. Hint. Oh kind Father figure, ever inspiring us to loftier heights. . .
Top, ask Father to come back, soon. Mike's being mean again. : (


My name is SSgt Brien Morris and LTC Phillips asked me to prepare a post for the blog. I'm not really familiar with blogging but here goes.

I'm 29 years old and originally from the GREAT STATE OF TEXAS!! (San Antonio to be exact).
I am currently stationed at Langley AFB in Hampton, VA, and have been there for almost 8 years (way too long!).
My first assignment was Vance AFB in Enid, OK. As most people know, Texans don't care to much for Oklahoma so I got out of there as soon as possible. After my stay in Oklahoma, I went to Osan AB in South Korea, and then I was sent to Langley.
I have had a number of deployments including Prince Sultan AB in Saudi Arabia, Incirlik AB in Turkey, Al Udeid AB in Qatar, Tallil AB in Iraq and I am currently at Camp Salerno in Afghanistan. So, this deployment is not my first rodeo.
I am a medic by training, but I am doing more of an administration job here. I work the night shift. So, I’m up when those of you in the states are awake. I am the only one here at night so I can get a lot of studying done. In the Air Force we take a test to be promoted, so that is what I have been studying. I have no problem being bored and having uneventful shifts. If we are busy, that means something bad happened. I do get bored here at night sometimes since most everyone else is sleeping. I try to get up early in the afternoon so I have some time to hang out with people.
I am single and don't have any kids so I really don't mind deploying. It's a chance to get out and see different parts of the world and experience things that most people don't. I have also met some great people and formed some strong bonds over the years. I suppose it would be different if I had a family, but since it’s just me I am enjoying the experience.
I am from a military family so this is really nothing new to me. My dad served for 20 years. I have one brother named Sammy Morris who is a running back for the New England Patriots. This is Sammy’s first year with the Patriots. He spent 4 years in Buffalo and 3 years in Miami.
It was kind of tough because I left for Afghanistan right before the season started, but the Patriots front office sends me copies of all the games. If they keep on playing the way they are and we don't get extended here, I should be home for the Super-bowl. I am not a Cowboys fan. I have never liked them. I grew up as an Oilers fan but they moved to Tennessee and it just isn’t the same.
One of the Dr.’s, here, graduated from Texas A&M and we were going to bet on the game against Texas Tech but he was scared. Good thing he didn't because he would have had to shave his head. We did bet on the Cowboys / Patriots game. If Dallas won, I would have to shave my moustache, if the Patriots won, he would have to grow a moustache. He is now growing a mustache (Go Patriots). I told him it is good he didn't bet on the A&M game, because he would have been bald headed with a moustache and I don't think that would have been a good look for him.
As I sat here, just typing and I thought to myself: My only concern coming here was missing a football season, where most people have wives / husbands and children they won’t see for the next --- However many months. I have a mother, father, brother, nieces, nephews etc, but I don't see them everyday any way; so, it’s pretty much the same except when I call now it’s from half way around the world.
It would be great to have a #2 with cheese from Whataburger and a large big red, or some Taco Cabana. But, all things considered I guess it’s not too bad.

SSgt Brien Morris

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Afghanistan, a country that is truly in need of our help . . .

Dear All,

I am writing to you all from FOB Salerno, Afghanistan with a small story of my experiences in a country that truly is in need of our help.
I am Sergeant First Class Michael Fields from Spokane Valley, Washington.
First and foremost I would like to tell all of the American people thank you, for all of your help and support.
I think that the best way that I could describe Afghanistan is the wild wild west, or life on the great frontier. The Afghan people are a very friendly and affectionate people who really want our help and our free way of life. I have been fortunate enough to go out on a few humanitarian aid missions through out eastern Afghanistan, giving medical help whee we can, to a people that are in dire need of it.

You see there is no medical system in place over here.

You can tell that they are governed by a different way of life here.
The men run everything here, and the women are seldom seen and never heard.
When we go out on our medical missions, it is always the men that come out
first for the help, and then the boys, and if there is anything left they will
allow only the sickest of the women and girls to come for our care.

But make no doubt about it, what we are doing here is making a difference
in the Afghan people's way of life, and improving their quality of

Life on the FOB (forward operating base) is not too bad, we have all we need to get by and we are as safe as we can be.

Some here don't ever leave the FOB and I feel for them, because there is so much to see here in this vast wilderness.

If I had to pick a place that best describes this place I would have to say the mountains around El Paso, TEXAS or White Sands, New Mexico.

We stay very busy in our hospital which is both good and bad. Good that time goes by very fast, bad that too many people are getting wounded.

But don't you all worry back home about our soldiers, we are giving them the best care in the world.




Friday, 12 October 2007

Caring for the BEST . . .


It is a privilege to fill in and put together a guest blog.

The Boss . . .

I am 1SG Child, COL Phillips right hand man who makes things happen and takes care of the day to day business of running the hospital. I refer to COL Phillips as the Boss since he is my direct supervisor. The Boss is the father of the group while I (his 1SG) take on the role of the mother of the group taking care of Soldiers and Airmen's needs. It is a full time job and I am happy to be here in Afghanistan doing my trained job.

Our Hospital's primary mission is to perform Combat Surgical Trauma.

Soldiers and Airmen perform their military occupation specialty -- saving lives. They learn about the day to day rigors of serving in a combat zone. I am in a unique position to observe and train different groups that come and go.

When a new rotation of Soldiers and Airmen come into the Hospital it is like the 1st day of school. There is a learning curve and after about a month they learn what their battle rhythm is and they get better at saving lives.

In our off duty time we train so we will keep sharp and stay busy.

After a few more months its time for them to leave and then we start all over again.

So instead of having just one “1st day of school”, we get to have lots of 1st days.

A new 1st day with each new rotation, that run into months for us.

We do have some continuity with the Army folks who stay here for the duration.

I think each time we start over we get better and better at this.

Combined Joint Hospital Staff



I feel it is an honor to serve with such outstanding Soldiers and Airmen of the Salerno Hospital in Afghanistan. I have seen all of our staff in action and they are truly living up to our hospital motto of "Caring for the Best," saving American, Coalition, and Afghani lives.

COL Richard Phillips, "The Boss", is the glue that holds everything together.

Hurry up and get home Father… (Your children miss you.)


1SG David S. Child
Salerno Hospital
Task Force MED
FOB Salerno
CJTF-82 / 82nd ABN


Monday, 8 October 2007

Be Proud and Support These Fellow Americans . . .

It’s been a month now at FOB Salerno.

There have been good days and bad days.

The worst day by far was the day of a “Fallen Hero”. He was one of ours. Maybe a brother, father, husband; but definitely a son and a Hero. All day long all I could do was think about the pain that his loves must have gone through.

It was just one year ago that I was at Balad, Iraq working in the ICU. I saw so many injured.

Before leaving for Iraq I knew from watching the news, we (the military) were doing an awesome job. But there was also injuries and casualties.

After seeing first hand and up close, the picture was 90% bigger.

Now that I’m at FOB Salerno Afghanistan, the same holds true.

I see our brave Heroes (men, women, military, and civilians) going out everyday putting their lives on the line.

Be proud and support these fellow Americans.

Lisa Baker, MSgt, USAF


Haole: I put MSgt. Baker on the spot,
When I asked her how can we show support for these American Warriors.

" I'm not really sure. emails and letters are great. I know when I read an email and someone is saying how proud they are of us for putting our lives on the line; I get this warm feeling inside. I guess just hearing and seeing it (US pride).

Some people seem to have forgotten that we are still at war. "


Haole: It's the beginning of the week. Send off that quick email/letter you've been meaning to send to a warrior.

"I want you to know there is one American in Central Texas grateful for the sacrifices you and your family have endured for our country.

Gratitude and prayers

Haole Wahine"


Monday, 1 October 2007

As I sit here in Afghanistan, I wonder how many people truly appreciate . . .

As I sit here in Afghanistan separated from my son, my family, and boyfriend, I wonder how many people truly appreciate the sacrifice that we as American soldiers and airmen make.

With so many people arguing that we need to pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan, you'd think they've forgotten what caused us to be here in the first place.

We are here trying to make sure that 9/11 never happens again.

But what most Americans don't seem to realize is that while some of us may not agree with being here, it's our job.
We have no choice!!!!
When we are given an order to go, we have to go!! Whether we want to or not.

Another thing that most people don't realize is truly how hard our job REALLY is. . .

Every year we have to leave our loved ones for months and sometimes over a year, to do a job that most people don't seem to want us to do.

This is especially hard for people such as myself who are single parents.
In an effort to do my job and serve my country, I am leaving behind a five-year-old son who started kindergarten a month before I left, a boyfriend who loves me very much, family, and friends. So while most people are getting their children settled into school, I'm missing my son's first year of school. Moments that I will never be able enjoy or even be a part of.

Not only will I miss that, but I will also be absent this holiday season.
No Thanksgiving,
No Christmas,
No New Year's, nothing.....

So yet again while millions of people will be spending this holiday season with family and friends, I will be alone in the Afghanistan desert wishing I was with my son, boyfriend, and family. All in an effort to serve my country.

You know the old saying,
"You never miss your water til the well runs dry" hits home.
You never realize what you take for granted until it's taken away from you.

Something as simple as:

Waking up in the middle of the night and walking three or four steps to go to the bathroom verses having to get dressed and walk outside to a completely different building.

Or . . . Being able to get in your car and drive wherever you need to go verses having to walk EVERYWHERE.

Or . . . Being able to hold and kiss your child.

Or . . . Being able to tell your significant other that you love them in person and not over the phone.

Simple things that you do on a daily basis.

I wonder if the people who want us to stop defending America would be willing to make such a sacrifice as myself and the thousands of other military members do time after time.

Especially when it seems like not many people appreciate it.........

S Sgt. Christina Webbs

Blogger note:
Please leave your comments for S Sgt Webbs.

If you would like to email her, use the email on my profile (Haole Wahine) I will forward your emails to Christina.