Thursday, February 9, 2012

Ja Jestem Polskim żołnierzem! (I am a Polish Soldier)

I became an honorary member of Poland's army yesterday. A few of us from my unit were given the Star of Afghanistan bearing the seal of the President of the Republic of Poland. The President had visited FOB Ghazni in December following the tragic deaths of six soldiers in two days, and some of the members of the Polish medical team had recommended the award in appreciation for our help during that time.
I hope you will not think me unpatriotic if I say that this is the most meaningful award I have recieved on my deployment. From my perpsective, it means a lot because it is tied to an event that is important to me personally. When I saw the bodies of those Polish soldiers, I felt that they were my brothers as much as any U.S. soldier was- they had given their lives for the safety of all of us on the base.
There are countless awards, certificates of appreciation, and commander's coins given to you in the military, and very few of them hold any personal significance to you. This is one I will keep in my office, wipe off every so often, and remember my Polish comrades.


Becky said...

Wow, what a great post. A very well deserved award I am sure. And please let your Polish comrades know I an happy to continue to send them pumpkin bread mixes even after you leave. I just can't garantee it will get there the first time. Great job Matt!

Lisa said...

That's terrific. I'm so proud of all your efforts to bring together people on the base, and am so glad that you know them well enough to feel that they are comrades. Knowing and understanding each other is always the first step to brotherhood, and brotherhood is critical to peace and meaningful coexistence.

You know that Becky and I would still like to see you be considered for some military award for ODB--we just need some information on who to contact (hint, hint)...

Kathy said...

We're proud of you, we're proud of you . . .we really are!

jbel said...

beautifully put Matt.
I still think about the foreign soldiers on Drew's base who would flank our soldier's caskets as they headed to the planes that would take them home to the states, to their families for burial. I will always appreciate that soldiers from other countries stood in those lines to show patriotism for our fallen men and women. i love that everyone respects life given in service to others.

The Kids