Sgt. Jason Talbert felt searing metal rip through his calf muscle. The shattering bones made an audible sound, and he felt the blood begin to flow down his leg into his boot. Yet, he didnít feel any pain. His years of training took over as he reached for his rifle and started to return fire as everything around him exploded in confusion and fire. All the men in his unit closed ranks as the insurgents pressed in on them. Their bullets ricocheted off the vehicles and rocket launched grenades exploded all around them.
During the firefight Cpl. Todd Garrett saw the blood hemorrhaging from the sergeantís leg. Grabbing a rope from the back of the disabled Humvee, he pushed the sergeant down to the pavement of the road. He used it to tie a tourniquet around the sergeantís leg, while trying to keep him still.
ďSgt., you have to let me stop that bleeding! Please hold still and donít move.Ē
Todd knew if he didnít stop the bleeding his Sgt. wouldnít make it. The smell of the blood mingled with the smoke from the disabled Humvee and sweat of the men fighting around him. The young corporal grimaced as he fought back the nausea from the sights and sounds around him.
ďSgt., hang with me! DonĎt you quit on me sir! Come on, fight to stay with me.Ē
Jasonís last thought before he lost consciousness was of his children.
God, donít let me die, I canít bear the thought of leaving my kids alone. Please donít let my kids grow up without their dad.
The medics arrived and airlifted Sgt. Talbert to the nearest military hospital. He slipped in and out of consciousness several times. Cpl. Garrett stayed at his side holding pressure on the tourniquet to keep the sergeant from bleeding to death. The medics lost him twice but resuscitated him each time. They managed to keep him alive until he reached the hospital. Several of the sergeantís men gave blood to help support him.
The doctors did emergency surgery to amputate his left leg and within four days he was back in the states. The ward he was put on was full of other soldiers who had also lost limbs in the war. Their screams, like his, could be heard throughout the nights as the horrors of war tormented their battered bodies and minds. He was saddened when he thought how so many had no clue of the terrible sacrifice all these brave men and women had made to protect their freedoms.
The nurses were a godsend to the wounded soldiers. So often at night you could see a number of them at the bedsides of soldiers, softly offering comfort and prayers for these heroes who were in such need of their kindness and compassion. Jason thanked God every day for each of them.
All his doctors and the staff were amazed when he was walking on his prosthetic leg just twenty five days after his injury. He showed uncommon persistence and never let defeat become an option in his recovery. He was moved to another ward, but oftentimes he would be found on the ward for newly arrived soldiers. He would take time to talk with them and offer encouragement. Often he could be seen praying for them.
Just before Jason was released from the hospital, one of the nurses asked him about his positive attitude and determination to never quit. His response was simple and to the point.
ďGod has a reason for all things. Life is what it is, and giving up just isnít an option.Ē
I wrote this to honor our military men and women throughout all the free nations of the world. God bless all those willing to fight for our freedoms.
All gave some - Some gave all.
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