Kyle decided before he left for Iraq in December of 2006, that he would keep a journal of everything that was going on. That didn’t happen, as he was OBA (Overcome By Activity). However, he did manage to keep it up all throughout, here and there, whether he wrote something every other day or once a month. His journal was for his time there, events, work, emotions, everything; in order to share it for future generations to come, and now for you, our loyal listeners:

Entry #8 of 17:

9 Feb 07
9:08PM
H/C: 13

Wow, I'm tired. I just got called in for work... gotta go! "

Entry #9 of 17:

18 Feb 07
7:22PM
H/C: 15

This place is losing it's "cool factor" really quickly. The constant noise of gunfire, explosions, jets, and helicopters really starts to get to a guy after a while. I want to be able to use my flashlight outside without having to worry about being shot. Or maybe it's just cabin fever setting in from being on a football field-sized "base" for so long. I've become desensitized to my job. The fact that I've had people killed doesn't bother me much anymore. Sometimes it's almost humorous, like the guy who was trying to escape by hopping from rooftop to rooftop that got shot in the leg and fell 2 stories only to impale himself on a water heater pipe. That's like some stuff you'd see on "Final Destination" or something like that. I couldn't make that up if I tried. Anyhow, on to another subject... the unclassified communications have been down for 4 days now, so I haven't been able to check e-mail, call home, anything. Oh and the chow hall stopped serving hot food during the day now, so I get to eat the same old cold sandwiches every day (some health code crap). Just heard another explosion... great. About 4 days ago, a mortar exploded about 150 yards away from me... just across the river. And I saw it happen. These things don't make me happy. Wow, I just read my last entry... that's kinda funny how I just got called in as I started my first entry in over a month. Anyhow, I'm going to bed now. I wish there was a way to turn my pager off... "

Kyle Mills - Mortar Cloud Across the River
Kyle Mills - Across the Euphrates

From Kyle, today:

At this point, things started to speed up and run together. I remember very clearly the operation that sent the guy plummeting to his death via water heater, none of us could believe his "luck". I also remember the mortar that hit across the river, this was a day before they got a little closer, and landed one about 15 feet from the back of our Tactical Operations Center (TOC). I was up in my new "office" area, which was up above the ops floor, so this explosion felt like it was right above my head. Some of the ceiling plaster even showered down on top of me. "

This is the 8th and 9th of a 17-part series, that will cover my entire journal, from my deployment to Iraq from December 2006 – July 2007. Check in next week for the next installment, when I cover the largest explosion(s) that I experienced during my time over there. I mean, this thing was big!

CLICK HERE to see last week’s installment of this 17-part series.