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Tracings in The Sand: First hand testimonials

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Tracings in the Sand

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Charles McLeod

Date Posted:November 07, 2001
Personal Website:Not Disclosed

My buddies knew me as Schizophrenic; Skitz for short. I served in the Persian Gulf from 6Oct90-21Apr91 with Bravo battery 1Bn 82 Field Arty 1 Cavalry Division. I served on the advance party. We reconed positions for the arty guns to occupy and fire from. The problems I have are many, here's a quick run down.

First, I believe no one takes us (PGW vets) serious because first of all, the media portayed this war as being dominated by smart bombs and missles. Very little about the soldier/marine on the ground scared to death as blue tracers zipped past our faces. And also, because this was not a long brutal war like Vietnam. I've had 'Nam vets and civilians alike say things to me like: "You guys didn't do anything over there!" That bothers me.

I do suffer from aching joints from my knees all the way to my shoulders, severe migraines, short spells of confussion, and bouts of what the doctors call "violent diahrea. Doctors have also told me I have a high level of some enzyme in my blood which they say is typical of someone who drinks heavily.... I don't drink! Anyway, I feel that no one is willing to deal with these illnesses. I was told it'd be in my best intrest to get out of the Army because my PT scores were steadily going down, not to wait to fail and be put out. I was career minded and have struggled ever since getting out. That's all I ever wanted to do was soldier. Now, my civilian dr. and the V.A only pump me with meds to cover up the symptoms. I feel like a drug addict with all the pills I take!

I believe one day the truth will come out. But like the Vietnam vet, it may not be until after we're all dead and gone that the gov't will admit to our claims.

The crazy thing is; despite how I may feel my gov't abandoned me in my time of need, after the 11Sept01 attacks.... I'd go back again!

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