I know he’s gonna kill me for writing this, but I can’t help myself…
My youngest brother, Logan, has had April 14th circled on his calendar for an entire year. What happens on that day, you ask? April 14th is the day that Logan will be released from the army after serving his country for 4 years. In order to bump up his release date, Logan has not taken a vacation day for an entire year because he feared the army might ‘suckerpunch’ him. He plans to add the vacation days at the end, meaning his last day gets bumped up to April 14. Because he hasn’t taken a day of leave in a year, he has never met his nephew, Xander. Ah, the sacrifices.
Logan, and everyone who knows him, is looking forward to his release. The past four years haven’t been easy (especially the 12 months he spent in Iraq) but he has learned a lot. He’s looking forward to returning to college as a junior and reentering society as a civilian. The army has tried to woo Logan with promotions and resign-on bonuses but he isn’t taking the bait.
Enter the sucker-punch. Its name is Stop Loss.
What is stop loss? Wikipedia defines it as : “is the involuntary extension of a service member’s enlistment contract in order to retain them beyond the normal end term of service.” Logan recently got word that he is locked in indefinitely. To make the sucker-punch worse… he’s going back to Iraq in June. For 15 months, not 12 months like his first deployment. He’s taking it like a champ unlike myself. I’m pissed. The whole thing seems a bit sneaky, underhanded, and back-door. It truly is an unfair thing for Logan– especially since he was so close to getting out.
Well, now that Logan has a lot of vacation days to use, he’ll finally get to met his wonderful nephew before his deployment. And I know everyone will be kind and generous and send him those wonderful care-packages again. And on a positive note, Logan’s been told he’ll actually get to do his job while in Iraq- meteorology (a relatively safe job). Last time they didn’t need him to do it, so they stuck him on top of a tank with a gun.
Please keep my brother in your thoughts and prayers. I’m sure April 14th will be a bad day for Logan and my family. An unfair day. Let’s all keep election day circled on our calendars… our country needs a big change.