My sister in Kuwait – part 2

Written Nov 14 – In the first few days at Fort Benning we continued through the various stages of processing. We had meetings with lawyers, chaplains(not a very nice one) security, finance, medical plus vaccinations for anthrax, typhoid, flu and small pox. We were issued uniforms, gas masks, Kevlar helmets, bulletproof vests etc. We attended trainings on IEDs, Geneva Convention etc. etc. etc.

Finally came the day when we were ready to deploy with thousands of green duffel bags laid out on the ground plus all personal belongings, the bomb dog came around to inspect everything. The duffel bags were loaded by baggage detail volunteers onto two semi trucks and we were
bussed to Freedom Hall.

Now Freedom Hall is an experience in itself. This is a huge building specifically built to send out the Troops. It is amazing! Very high ceilings with huge flags from every state overhead. Hundreds of very comfortable recliner lounge chairs on each end and 8+ huge big screen TVs above the chairs.

I was laying on the floor because although there are hundreds of recliners it is still not enough for everyone and we as a Red Cross team were sharing a chair. While laying on the floor an old veteran came to me and shook my hand and told me, “Thank you for your service.” and I began to weep. I don’t know why this makes me cry, but it does and my eyes are leaking as I write this sentence. Across the hall and old military man sat with a tables full of books that he had collected from donations and were given free to anybody in Freedom Hall. This too touched my heart.

After we were there a few hours, they herded us in to the “Ready room”, well I was not quite “ready”. In Freedom Hall I had a lounge chair, free books and a huge TV with Obama’s first speech being aired. I was content to stay at Freedom Hall. It was the best place I had been for some time. But off we went to the Ready room, which is wooden bleachers in a small auditorium…

I will end this today because I must go to work, but next time I will tell you about the trip across the world, it was close to hell, but that is the rest of the story. TATA for now.
Love you all so very much. Sharon

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