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Old Nov 29, 2010, 03:19 PM
Team Cobra!!! Ssssssss!
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United States, NE, Doniphan
Joined Feb 2005
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Still chugging along in Afghanistan

Hey folks, its been awhile since I posted anything new. Sorry, no current pictures this time, my camera battery is dead and I forgot my battery charger in Kandahar.

Im currently out at a small base somewhere between Kandahar City and Lashkar Gah. Not a bad little joint, but, living in a tent with 10 other people can get old quick. Im on a 2 week rotation out here doing Med Evacs again. Unfortunatly it has been pretty busy. In less than a week we have flown about 20 hours. If you figure each mission to be about 1.5 hours long, thats a considerable amount of missions flown. We have picked up pretty much every type of person you can think of. Afghan soldiers, US soldiers/marines, and civilians. A couple have been young kids. Those really suck, because it kinda hits you in the heart to see these 6-8 year old kids all messed up from improvised explosive devices, gunshots and even one from falling into a 60 foot deep hole and bashing his head open VERY badly.

We have picked them up at bases, fields and out in the middle of open desert. Makes for some tough landings at times. One the other day took about 4 attempts just to get in there due to the insane amount of dust and the fact that we were flying in the dark with night vision goggles. Its quite a challenge over here sometimes.

But, no matter who it is, or where they are, we go get them and give them the best possible care we can and get them to the hospital as fast as possible. Thats our job, and out of all the different types of missions I have flown, this one is by far the most rewarding. Knowing that you are helping people is something special to me.

Yeah, Im just the pilot up in the front flying the helicopter. Its the flight medics and crew chiefs are the ones who make stuff happen for the wounded. Without those guys back there, some of these people wouldnt have a chance. They are tremendously well trained and committed to their jobs. Gotta love those young fellas for what they do day in and day out.

Anyway, enough of my rambling. Im doin good, hangin in there and counting down the days until early March when I should get to go home again. Hopefully this time for good. With over 18 years and 5 combat tours, its time to go somewhere else.

Im currently trying to move back to Fort Rucker, Alabama shortly after this tour, to be a UH-60 instructor pilot. That would mean I COULD stay there for 3 years and teach brand new pilots how to fly the Blackhawk. 3 consecutive years in the USA! The family and I wont know how to act! The plan is, assuming I get promoted next year, to stay at Rucker long enough to have 3 years of service as a CW3 (Im currently a CW2). That would put me at about 21-22 years of active duty. Then its retirement time. And hopefully move on to be a civilian instructor pilot also at Fort Rucker in the TH-67 (Bell 206 Jet Ranger). The pay and the hours are pretty nice. Im looking very forward to retiring.

Ya'll take care!

Laine.
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 05:03 PM
Blade CP Pro cruncher
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United States, SC, Swansea
Joined Oct 2010
205 Posts
Bless you for serving and come home safely!
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 05:23 PM
Registered User
USA, TX, Houston
Joined Apr 2010
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Thanks for your dedication and commentate to our fine country we live in.

Come home safely and soon.

Thanks again
The Powell Family
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 05:43 PM
When's the next fly-in?
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Tanner, Alabama
Joined Oct 2003
6,445 Posts
Rucker is a lot closer to SEFF too! We all know how important that is, right?

Glad to hear you're still doing good over there. Stay safe, buddy!

Andy
(who spent four years at Rucker while Dad was teaching folks to fly Chinooks)
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 08:03 PM
Air Cooled VW mechanic
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USA, CO, Longmont
Joined Jul 2008
202 Posts
Thanks for sharing and thanks for serving.
You may be just the pilot but a Blackhawk is a ton faster than surface "Roads" or whatever passes for roads over there!!
Keep your head down and your chin up.
Best wishes from Colorado
Eric
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 10:10 PM
Registered User
Las Vegas, NV
Joined Nov 2009
222 Posts
Thanks for sharing your stories. My nephew is an Army SFC medic stationed somewhere in Afganistan. I did twelve years active duty Air Force and I can tell you in my heart you guys (and gals) are all heroes. Thanks. -Rodger
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Old Nov 29, 2010, 11:08 PM
master of the universe
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USA, CA, Novato
Joined Jul 2008
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be safe! the retirement plans sound great!
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Old Nov 30, 2010, 12:11 AM
Team Cobra!!! Ssssssss!
lmopar69's Avatar
United States, NE, Doniphan
Joined Feb 2005
7,853 Posts
Thanks everyone for the comments. Right now, its just counting down the days, doin the mission as best we can and then heading home. Almost 1 DEC already... wow! I hope the last few months "fly" bye!

Laine.
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Old Nov 30, 2010, 12:51 PM
Smoke me a Kipper
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Cedar Grove North Carolina
Joined Oct 2006
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Hope it works out for you

always enjoy reading your posts
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Old Nov 30, 2010, 04:01 PM
Registered User
Shoreline, WA
Joined May 2004
365 Posts
Laine,

Glad to read a post and know you're doing OK. Double check the difference in retirement between 22 years and 25 years. At one time it was significant. Keep up the good work.

RichardS
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Old Nov 30, 2010, 11:31 PM
Team Cobra!!! Ssssssss!
lmopar69's Avatar
United States, NE, Doniphan
Joined Feb 2005
7,853 Posts
Thanks guys. And LSF226, yeah, it is still a good amount of change. 2.5% for every year after 20 years. Adds up quick. And I love doing what I do. Who knows what will happen when the time comes. The wife dosnt thing she could imagine me NOT in the Army. The closer I get to 20 years, the more I can imagine me not in the Army though! Sure would be nice to spend some time in the US.

Laine.
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Old Dec 01, 2010, 03:03 PM
<>< AKA W4BPS
USA, TN, Tullahoma
Joined Dec 2001
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Duty

God Speed... Brian
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Old Dec 01, 2010, 04:03 PM
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United States, MN, Mankato
Joined Jul 2003
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Thanks for doing what your doing Laine. I'm heading down to SEFF this year with Willmsy and Joel D. Looking forward to meeting you in person.

Steve
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Old Dec 01, 2010, 04:10 PM
Team Cobra!!! Ssssssss!
lmopar69's Avatar
United States, NE, Doniphan
Joined Feb 2005
7,853 Posts
Thank you Brian. Hope to see you all at the Tullahoma fun flys this next year!

Steve, thanks man. Tell Willmsy and Joel I said wassup. And Joel wont even have to work on someone elses plane all week! See ya there!

Laine.
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Old Dec 01, 2010, 04:14 PM
When's the next fly-in?
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Tanner, Alabama
Joined Oct 2003
6,445 Posts
Laine,

Brian and I attended the 2010 Tullahoma Fun Fly in October and had a blast. Wish you could have been there! We'll definitely be there next year...

Andy
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