Patriot Pat says...
If you haven't noticed, I end all of my articles with: Andrew Cahill is a true Boston sports fan.
Let me set the scene.
It was late March, 2003, late at night, and I couldn't sleep because my heart was racing from the noise of helicopters that I had been hearing for hours.
I could hear them flying back and forth over us—they were Blackhawks running medevacs, since Task Force Tarawa was getting their ass handed to them just north in Nasiriyah, Iraq.
We knew it was a matter of time until we were sent up to help, and everyone was pretty restless.
It had been four days since we had crossed the border from Kuwait, and had hardly had any contact with anyone, let alone anyone we could assume an enemy.
We got the order to move up, but had it become morning by this point. The Marines of Alpha Company, First Reconnaissance Battalion, took the lead as we moved forward into the ongoing battle.
If the First Reconnaissance Battalion sounds familiar, you may have heard of us if you watched Generation Kill on HBO or read the book.
We passed burned-out Humvees, and Marines desperately digging themselves into fighting positions.
The sky is completely clear, and it is comfortably warm even though we are all wearing our chemical protective suits.
I'm standing behind my teams' .50 caliber machine gun while we start to see the city through the palm trees.
As we arrive at the outskirts of the city, it starts.
We line up along the bank of the Euphrates river and begin scanning for targets.
We find them.
We officially begin engaging in combat.
Snipers prosecute targets across the river as I provide suppressive fire for the light armored vehicles of the First Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion—they were attempting to cross the main bridge over the river.
An F/A-18 screams by really low above us, and rocket propelled grenades sail at Cobra attack helicopters flying above the war-ravaged city.
Then First Sergeant Bell casually walks up behind me.
"You guys need more ammo?" he yells at us.
I look over at one of my Marines, Lance Corporal Terrian, and tell him to shift right along the wall he was covering behind, as bullets start to rain in from behind us and hit where he had been kneeling.
It was friendly fire from the grunt battalion who had dug themselves in behind us—bastards. We shoot up red signal flares, so they know to stop shooting at us.
Mortars start to come in on our positions, so we start to shoot at potential forward observers, and I'm thinking to myself: "Man, I really hope the Patriots can get Ty Warren at pick 14."
Andrew Cahill is a true Boston sports fan. Check out his website, Patriot Pat's Patsies.
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