Friday, April 25, 2008

Aeromedical Evacuation from Balad, Iraq to Ramstein Germany

Here's an amazing video my buddy MaryAnn shared with me. This video shows the transport of non-critical and ambulatory patients.

B-Roll of Airmen preparing a medical transport fight from Balad, Iraq to Ramstein, Germany.

First you'll see the CASF in Balad. The patients are awake and conversing with the Airmen of the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing.

From there the patients on litters are taken from the CASF to the bus for transport to the aircraft. You'll see the first patient carried out has a blue folder on his chest - those are his medical records. Everything is also in a computer system, of course.

On the bus the litters are suspended to reduce jarring during the short ride, but they're also fastened to the floor to prevent too much movement.

Then you'll see the inside of the aircraft where the litter patients are placed on "racks". Behind the racks you can get a glimpse of the ambulatory patients who sit along the outer sides of the aircraft in troop seats.

Specialized in-flight medical personnel care for the patients during flight. They are the ones in the flight suits (overalls).

After the staff of the CASF say goodbye to their patients, the plane takes off for Germany.

At Ramstein Air Base the patients are taken from the aircraft to the exact same type of bus for the short drive to Landstuhl hospital. Here's what it's like to arrive at Landstuhl.

Another video about the transport of critical patients can be found here
A big shout out and THANK YOU to our friends of the 332nd AEW for taking such good care of our guys!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Soldiers and Kids - we need toys - can you help

One thing our medics love to do is help care for the local kids. In many cases, the Anerican military provides the only health care available for these people. And being Amercian soldiers, they love to have small toys to give to the kids. These are a great ice-breaker, and every toy our soldiers pass out buys a lot of good-will among the local people.

We are looking for small toys to send to our medics. Hit the garage sales, get your kids' to clean out their closets, have a "toy drive" at your school - gently used items are fine.

Here's what they request:
-Beanie-type toys, small stuffed animals - they don't need to be official Ty brand of course.

-Teddy bears, small animals of any kind (but no pigs, which would be offensive in the Moslem culture)

-Small cars, trucks,

-Balls, small balls of all kinds, soccer balls

-Bubbles (small bottles, please wrap them in zip-lock bags in case of leaks)

-Coloring books

-Crayons - 8 or 12-packs is fine (we will ship them to Afghanistan where it is not so hot they will melt)

-Colored pencils and pencil-sharpeners

-Markers - washable only (just like you'd give your own kids)

-Athletic shoes and sandals in kid sizes, gently used is fine.

No Pigs in any form
No large toys that will be hard to ship. No giant stuffed animals, for instance.
No dolls
No Toy weapons, squirt guns, knives
No battery-operated toys. These folks can't easily get batteries.
No religious-themed items
No military-themed items

Please send your donations to:

If you live East of the Mississippi
Soldiers' Angels
112 Greenhill Road
Ramseur NC 27316

If you live west of the Mississippi
Soldiers Angels
914 Tourmaline Dr
Newbury Park, Ca 91320

Every toy that an American soldier gives to a child helps bring our cultures closer, and maybe buys a little extra safety for our guys over there too. Plus, it just feels good.


Sunday, April 13, 2008

Troop Tango - St Bernadette's Kids collect donations for 325th CSH

The students and faculty of St. Bernadette's school collected a monster amount of donations for our wounded for the second year in a row. This year, I scored pictures of the kids at their "Troop Tango" fundraiser and dance.

Looks like they had a great time and lots of fun doing it. They mailed a huge number of boxes of toiletries,snacks, clothing and other needed supplies to the 325th CSH for the patients and medics to enjoy.

Every time I see young people putting so much energy and dedication to supporting our American troops, well I just know we're going to be ok.