Monday, March 31, 2008

Changing the world, one person at a time...

It's always been my belief that it IS possible to change the world for the better. Whether it's one person at a time or large groups, we all have it in us to have a positive impact on our world. Each of us has the opportunity or ability to help at least one person in a major way during our lifetime and thus start a good chain reaction that reaches far beyond our own small bubble of a world. When I read the following story, a comment at the end caught my attention. In addition to saving a young man's life, the soldiers changed the opinion of one man by just doing what comes natural. In affecting the man's outlook on Americans there will be a wider affect. The son will think differently, maybe other children will have an open mind, maybe they'll start to see us as people instead of a large homogeneous country painted by the same brush. - jmd / Fayette Front Page

Soldiers, Airmen Save Iraqi Teen Injured by Bomb
By Staff Sgt. Margaret C. Nelson,
USA Special to American Forces Press Service

KIRKUK, Iraq, March 30, 2008 - On his way home from working in his family's field near this Iraqi city, Rahmey didn't see the hidden improvised explosive device until it was too late.

Staggering for home after the blast, the 13-year-old Iraqi boy had no way to know that his life would be saved by the quick, selfless actions of U.S. Army soldiers and U.S. Air Force airmen March 27.

"I heard and saw the explosion from my window," said Arif Muter Jarew, Rahmey's father.

It wasn't long before his son stumbled in with shrapnel wounds riddling his knee, leg and chest.

"I was panicked, there was blood coming from his mouth," Jarew said. "My son was dying. He had blood everywhere."

The hospital was miles away and the desperate father didn't think his vehicle would make it. With his son in his arms, he ran out to the street to flag down passing motorists for help.

"Then I saw a convoy of American soldiers," he said. Jarew was a little wary of asking for help from coalition forces. With his dying son in his arms, he only hesitated a moment – his son's life was at stake.

"We saw some Iraqis waving us to stop and one was cradling a kid," said Pfc. Jeffrey Parson of the 10th Mountain Division's 1st Brigade.

Parson and Pvt. Justin Avila, the patrol's medic, began treating what they initially thought were gunshot wounds.

"There was blood coming from the kid's mouth and his wounds, so we treated the
bleeding first," Parson said.

The patrol radioed Forward Operating Base McHenry in the Hawijah district of Tamim province. A medical evacuation helicopter arrived a few precious minutes after receiving the call to transport Rahmey and his father to the FOB. After medics stabilized Rahmey's condition, he was transported along with his father to the medical facility in Kirkuk, Iraq.

U.S. Army and Air Force medics treated Rahmey for shrapnel wounds at the Freedom Hospital.

"He's a very lucky boy," said Air Force Capt. Gabriel Rulewicz, a military surgeon. "He'll need some surgery to remove the shrapnel, but we've stabilized him for transport to a hospital in Kirkuk."

The Air Force surgeon credits Rahmey's survival to the quick reaction by everyone involved. "It is a perfect ending to what could have quickly resulted in the opposite," he said.

But to one Iraqi father, this ending was more than perfect.

"I did not know how caring U.S. soldiers are. I could not believe how well they treated my son and me," Jarew said. "I am so thankful to everyone who saved my son's life."
Photo: Arif Muter Jarew, left, hears about his son's treatment through an interpreter on Forward Operating Base Warrior, Kirkuk, Iraq, March 27, 2008. The 13-year-old boy was injured by an improvised explosive device. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Margaret C. Nelson

(Army Staff Sgt. Margaret C. Nelson is assigned to the 115th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.)


Anonymous said...

As a PROUD ARMY MOM!, why have we not seen this and many more stories of this nature on the main stream media. Is it because the media does want to show us all the good being done there! Maybe they think this is just a Bush War!

My son served there and does not speak much of the many good things they did for the people there he doesn't want to look like he is waiting for a pat on the back, but all of our HEROES do, and deserve the credit due! They certainly get all the crap and disrespect of people who just don't care.
Please forward this to the main stream media.
Brenda K.

Fayette Front Page said...

This and other similar stories are sent to other main stream media daily. Unfortunately, they choose to ignore the great stories. We have another blog, Military Matters, where we post stories similar to this, plus if we can tie in to another topic (medical into our health related blog, etc.) then we use the stories. Every single day there is at least one story of the good our soldiers are doing around the world. We're with you --- we'd love to see more in all the other media outlets, not just our local Fayette Front Page.