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Friday, October 15, 2004

Bayji Iraq Camp Summerall Soldiers: A Visit to FOB Summerall

A Visit to FOB Summerall
I was given permission to put this blog posting up from a visitor to FOB Summerall. I've included a link to the blog it is taken from if you would like to go and read other FOB stories or view their uploaded Movies, Ii couldn't get them to load, but perhaps Im using the wrong player for it.

FOB (Forward Operating Base) Summerall was by far the smallest base that we visited, only about 1,500 troops. So, it was an extremely big deal for the guys and gals on base to get some some live entertainment from the States. There was a "FOB Summerall Welcomes Chely Wright" banner on their communications building and we all received plenty of goodies (mugs and sweatshirts, etc. from the commanding officer). The true fun highlight of Summerall, though, was our trip to the artillery range.

After sound check, all of us that were interested (the whole band and crew), went up to the artillery range to shoot whatever weapons we wanted to. We got to shoot 9mm Glocks (pistols), M-16 machine guns, M-203 grenade launchers, M-249 machine guns, a 50 cal machine gun mounted in the turret of a Humvee and finally, the AT4 (anti-tank rocket launched from the shoulder) "bazooka."

Warning: You may hear some profanity in the background about 14 seconds in. I will try to fix that soon. (hopefully this weekend - first weekend of October)

Tall Version Artillery Range (file size 712 KB) (You'll need to visit the original blog to try and view these...sorry, a link is provided above...))
Venti Version Artillery Range (file size 4.3 MB)
Grande Version Artillery Range (file size 1.3 MB)

There was only one AT4 rocket for the entire band to share. For some reason or another, I got to be the one to launch it. It was incredible (click to watch -- I just added a short clip of the AT4 that Clay, our Bass Player got with his digital camera). There's no kick because the propulsion of the rocket shoots out of the back of the tube. You do, however, feel an incredible flash of heat and energy when it launches and it kicks up sand all around you. I'll proudly say that I hit my target (an old junked-up Iraqi tank or truck) and it made a loud boom. I was high on an endorphin rush for a good 30 minutes afterward.

Bayji Iraq Camp Summerall Soldiers: A Visit to FOB Summerall

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