Keeping a low profile along the waddi. Ryan grabbing a much needed break while on patrol. A Marine never walks when he can sit and never sits when he can lie down.

It’s one thing to be downrange, in Indian territory getting shot at, having your vehicle peppered with rounds, listening as incoming pings off your hasty cover, finding spent rounds in the ground around your hootch or where you work, or triggering an IED along the route and surviving it.

It’s a different scenario altogether when you are the father of a Marine who calls you up early one morning and starts the conversation right off with, “Mom can’t hear can she? OK, good. Don’t tell mom, I got shot.”
As the father of this particular Marine, I can tell you some images went through my mind until he actually took me through a blow-by-blow of the incident in question. The first thought of course is, WTF over? You got shot, and you’re not hurt? Wow!

Fortunately for our Marines in the field today, the armor is a bit more protective than it was years ago, and between his ACOG, his magazines and the ESAPI plate, he didn’t get much more than a singed ear from a bullet fragment, and knocked on his tail…and a reminder that he was deep in Indian territory.

His ACOG, on the other hand, obviously took some damage, (see image) and was listed as a combat loss. Rumor has it, he will be presented said ACOG on a plaque upon return Stateside.

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