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Soldier 'hanging out,' waiting for orders

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

"It's better at Fort Campbell. No missiles flying around."

PFC David Moody

Army Pfc. David Moody, a Brazil native and veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom, will spend the next few months kicking around Fort Campbell, Ky., serving as chauffeur to other military personnel and wondering what to do with all his free time.

"We're just kind of hanging out right now, giving people rides," he said.

Compared to the time he spent dodging Iraqi missiles and insurgent fire, his current routine represents a distinct change of pace. Moody returned Nov. 28 from a one-year deployment to Iraq, where he operated a 50-caliber machine gun mounted to the lead truck in a supply convoy. And while he has enjoyed his time back in the states, Moody said he fully expects to return to Iraq within a year.

In a series of recent addresses, President Bush has expressed his continued belief in the war effort in Iraq and refused to consider a large-scale pull-out of U.S. troops in the region. The indefinite continuation of the war likely means a return trip for Moody, who said he's ready to go where he's needed.

"It'll be an honor to relieve the people over there, so they'll get a break with their family and friends like I did," he said.

Moody's return to Iraq is a dangerous proposition. He's grown accustomed to enemy missile fire ("You run into it a lot."). Though he can't discuss specifics, he said the convoy he guarded was attacked on several occasions during his first tour.

"Everything's scary over there," he said. "There's no real safe part. We just try to stay on our toes and make sure we're ready to roll."

But until further notice, Moody will remain safely within the United States. After an extended visit with family and friends in Brazil over the holidays, Moody is adjusting to his environs at Fort Campbell. He goes to bars occasionally, fulfills his limited duties and generally enjoys his time away from combat.

"It's better at Fort Campbell. You have a normal life," he said. "No missiles flying around."

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