Monday, April 23, 2007

Perspective: Fighting through the wounds

Tony Wood

EVERY DAY IS a frustration. It's just one frustration after frustration," says Sgt. Tony Wood, a 40-year-old soldier from Ahuimanu who is suffering from traumatic brain injury.

Once an avid scuba diver and professional Windward Oahu cowboy, Wood now suffers from short-term memory loss. "I went through three wallets in a month," he said recently.

But what remains vivid in Wood's mind is what occurred on July 27, 2005, in Iraq as he was returning from a mission near the Iranian border as a military police officer with the 720th Military Police Battalion out of Fort Hood, Texas.

"My up-armored Humvee was struck by three IEDs (improvised explosive devices), with the first one being a penetrator type and the other two shrapnel types," Wood recalled.

"The blast immediately killed my driver and gunner. You couldn't find any traces of them and they were sitting just inches from me. I remember seeing the door on the driver's side just flapping in the wind; yet there was no one in the vehicle."

Read the rest at the Star Tribune