Every day, anytime I see my daughter laying down with her eyes closed I either must immediately look away or I have to walk away because the pain is too much that I immediately start crying. This little girl was about 7 years old or so wearing a pretty white dress when I helped receive her near lifeless body with 2 other soldiers frantically trying to rush her to the med station as she was still alive with a faint pulse and her eyes completely open as if she were 100% conscious. There was no bloody mess like in the movies, she took a clear shot to the head. Once we got her to the med station I remember jumping back to let the medics and doctors tend to her. That was like the movies however, the yelling and panic by these doctors literally racing against the clock to save her. I remember standing there everything was in slow motion I kept saying to myself over and over “don’t die on me, don’t die on me, don’t you die on me!” as I stood there staring at her praying for her to live. And just like a lightning bolt there it was “we lost her.”. I just remember standing there cold as ice as I watched her die in front of me. Emotionless I helped escort her body to the Humvee we turned into a makeshift hearse. Her eyes still open in her beautiful white dress and white matching shoes with bows stitched on. Once we got her  into the back of the Humvee me and two other soldiers that escorted her body said a prayer for her and then the most hurtful and horrific thing I have ever seen or experienced in my life happened. My sergeant that was one of the two soldiers with me closed her eyes. I will never forget that moment in fact I am crying now as I type up this blog. I often wonder to this day what her name was, if she was afraid before she died, did she suffer? The pain that remains is that I really wanted to save her and all the children in Iraq from pain and suffering, I would have shielded her with my own body to save her life and give up mine because that’s what a soldier does. You are selfless, putting others before you regardless of the situation even if it costs you your life. That is the essence of a soldier, the warrior ethos.

I often look to the sky at night and search for the brightest star in the sky and wish upon that star that she is in heaven where there is no pain, no tears, no sorrow, just love and warmth. I will never know her name, my heart will never stop shedding tears for the girl in the white dress.

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