My close friend, Job M. Reigoux, was killed in Afghanistan on 1 June 2013, from injuries he sustained thanks to a coward with an RPG. I ordered the bracelet on 2 June, when I learned of his death.
Every person we've lost - every person named on your blog - is a whole person, and there are not words enough to describe the world you lose in the person who is gone. Let me say that he was, at bottom, a Non-Commissioned Officer in every sense of the word, and every NCO that has ever had the honor to wear the stripes will understand the world contained in that statement. As an NCO myself, I ask myself what Job would do when confronted with a situation in which I am unsure what the right answer is. Job has not guided me wrong yet, nor do I think he ever will.
The loss never ends, it reverberates every second of every day. His unit flew home three weeks after he died, and he was supposed to have been transferred to a larger post three days before his death, but the move was postponed. There is great bitterness in knowing that, in knowing that had some Army bureaucrat not changed their mind from the safety of a hardened TOC somewhere, he would still be here. But there is less bitterness when I think of all the things he taught me when he was alive, and all the things he still teaches me now he is gone. There is even greater comfort in knowing that when my time comes, he will be there.
I do not remove this Memorial Bracelet; it has not left my wrist from the moment I opened the package in the mail. When I deploy in future it will be there with me, and so will be he.
SSG Alexandra G.
10th Mountain Division
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