A little story that Chaplain Nicholson repeated about a little girl in Iraq: The soldiers were driving along when they came upon a little girl sitting on the road, blocking their way. They motioned for her to get out of the way but she would not. A translator was brought forward. The girl said “bad men” and put something in the road ahead. Upon a search, a road bomb was found.
Returning, the soldiers of the 116th Idaho National Guard Reserves (that I have lauded here so shamelessly) again addressed the girl through the translator. What would she like for a reward? The girl answered simply, “a pencil.” Hence Operation Crayon and its successor programs have already had some valuable returns.
I searched for the article, reported in Idaho’s “Idaho State Journal” but only found a reference to this story in this article: Milestones
I don’t need to tell you again how endeared the soldiers and the children are to each other, but I needed an excuse to post more pictures of the little folks in Iraq (sorry, they are some of my favorite subjects). The soldiers have told me several times that their interactions with the children here help them forget some things they face and remind them this effort is worth it. And of course the children receive clothing, school supplies, candy, and admiration in return. It’s a win-win scenario. Enjoy! (please forgive a little merry seasonal poetry)