Episode 3: A Veterans View

5 Minutes of Fighting

“Damn it’s hot! I hate sitting in this turret with this flight suit and MTV on.”

We have been driving around for 6 hours now, and the days only get hotter as we go on. Not to mention, the vibe I am getting right now from the locals has shifted, and something isn’t right. After 4 months of mobile patrolling, I hate this truck, I hate this place, I hate this MK-19, I hate everything. It’s time to go home.

“Whheeww! That was close. Watch out for that white truck!”

Hatred and depression turns into excitement and adrenalin. This white truck comes from the rear of the convoy, and slammed to a halt in the middle of the convoy. Everyone just freezes, anticipating what follows from a situation like this.

The platoon sergeant gets out of his vehicle with a few Marines and talks to the drivers. The gunners set up security and start scanning around our perimeter. The vehicle is sent on their way after a thorough search. The Marines load back up in the vehicles.

The radio chirps, “Truck 1, push to…?”

Immediate bursts of heavy machine gun fire starts to slam into my truck! I have no idea where the rounds are coming from, there is no way to look over the turret either to see with the heavy bombardment of lead hitting the MK and the turret.

Then the heavy retaliation of fire begins from our side, and we attempt to gain fire superiority. I can finally get my head up and return a shield of 40mm grenades jumping from my weapon system. I am tuned in to my area of responsibility, with a target locked on an enemy position. As I am firing, truck three begins driving with their gunner firing rapidly at the same position I am. His back is to me, and they are about to drive right in front of me.

Without thinking, without a thought process and what is happening, I release my trigger and control grips completely, watch the truck glide in front of me from left to right, and then I reengage.

Within 60 seconds, the engagement is over. We look around, crack a laugh that everyone is ok. Two more hours of patrolling left, even a small firefight doesn’t give us a chance to return to base early.

“Damn it’s hot! I hate sitting in this turret with this flight suit and MTV on.”

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