On the 5 year anniversary of Commander McFlightsuit's stunt abord an aircraft carrier where the now infamous banner proclaimed "Mission Accomplished", perhaps it's appropriate to examine at least one part of that accomplishment.
THIS American soldier is called "Miracle Mike". Why? Because as a result of a roadside explosion in Iraq, he was burned over 97% of his body and against impossible odds, he survived.
He was an inspiration to all around him, and worked tirelessly to help other burn victims.
He was called "Miracle Mike" because it was a miracle he was alive at all after the horrendous burns which left him hospitalized for 17 months and endured anywhere from 120 to 150 operations. (his family has lost count.)
"Miracle Mike" died in April. He was 21 years old.
From a post at Patriot Guard:
updated 15 APR 08 0615 PST by wags
Short Notice – Memorial – Sgt Merlin German USMC, 22, San Antonio, TX, 15Apr08, Operation Iraqi Freedom
Sergeant Merlin German was born 15 November 1985 in Manhattan, New York. He enlisted in the Marine Corps 08 September 2003 and received a meritorious promotion to Private First Class out of boot camp. in April 2004, Sergeant German transferred to his first permanent duty station, 5th Battalion, 11th Marines, 1st Marine Division where he served as a Field Artillery Cannoneer. Shortly after Sergeant German was assigned to his unit, he was sent to Machinegunner's Course. Among the Corporals and Sergeants, he was the only Private First Class to attend the course. Sergeant German's outstanding leadership skills helped him to graduate second in his class.
In September 2004, Sergeant German's unit was attached to 2nd Battalion, 11th Marines and became part of Weapons Platoon for convoy security. His unit was charged with safely transporting prisoners and cargo, and Sgt German participated in over 150 successful missions.
Sergeant German's Platoon Sergeant and Company Commander applauded him for his keen sense of spotting improvised explosive devices (IEDs). In the first six months of deployment, Sergeant German found 8 IEDs without anyone sustaining injuries. On 21 February 2005, Sergeant German's squad was on a mission to recon an unknown route from Jordan to Baghdad. While en route to Camp Ramadi, Sergeant German spotted an IED while standing in the turret at his Mk-19 machine gun. With no time to alert the driver, their HUMVEE was hit on a left side by a gas-fed shape charge explosive. Sergeant German was blown clear of the vehicle, and his fellow Marines helped extinguish the flames that had quickly burned 97% of his total body surface area.
Sergeant German was immediately transported to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany where doctors stated Sergeant German had NO chance of living. He had a quick turn-around flight to the burn unit at Brooke Army Medical Center, San Antonio and he arrived on 25 February 2005. He was cared for as an inpatient for 17 months, and then resided as a guest of the Fisher House before purchasing his own home in San Antonio.
Sergeant German fought bravely for more than three years but died in the hospital on 11 April 2008 while recovering from his most recent operation. He is survived by his parents, Hemery and Lourdes German, his sisters, Marcia and Lawren and his brothers, Ariel, Freddie, Johnny, Alejandro and Julio.
Last December, after months of practice so he could lift his arms, turn and pivot, he donned his Marine dress blues and hit the dance floor at Brooke's Holiday Ball.
He surprised his mother, taking her into his wounded arms, gliding smoothly across the room to a melody he chose -- a Rod Stewart song, "Have I Told You Lately That I Loved You?"
The crowd stood and applauded. And cried.
Meanwhile, an Army Ranger exists no more after being killed on his SEVENTH tour of duty.
A Poway High School graduate who achieved his childhood dream of becoming an Army Ranger has been killed in Afghanistan, it was reported Thursday.
Sgt. 1st Class David L. McDowell, 30, of Ramona died Tuesday in Bastion, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked using small arms fires, according to the Defense Department.
He had been deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq seven times and was a recipient of two Bronze stars and a Purple Heart, according to the Union-Tribune.
Can any of the right wing war cheerleaders please explain just why these soldiers and thousands of others have suffered horribly, been maimed, crippled, and murdered, their friends and families left to endure unending pain and grief? What exactly did they die for? Is our country any more secure or better off for any of it? Seriously. You were not shy about thumping your chest and condemning anyone who opposed it. Surely it's a simple matter to answer those questions now.