Iraq veteran offers heartfelt thank you

Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Army Spc. Mark Young, center, presents an American flag that flew 'in the face of the enemy' in Iraq to Michael Jackson, left, and Hundley Ford of VFW Post. No. 5109.

Army Spc. Mark Young returned from his tour of duty with the 1/30th Rear Area Operations Command in Iraq more than six weeks ago, but he hasn't forgotten how much a package from stateside meant to the soldiers stationed there.

"It's highly appreciated, highly appreciated," confides Young. "There's nothing worse than a soldier who's been forgotten."

Young and his fellow soldiers in the 1/30th received several packages from the members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 5109 in Lewisburg.

"We use just about everything they send, and what we don't use we give the Iraqi children," Young says. "Most of them don't have very much at all. To them, a bar of soap is like a $100 gift certificate at Wal-Mart. It's amazing to see. It makes you humble for what we have over here."

To show just how much the soldiers of his unit appreciated not being forgotten by the folks back home, Young presented Post Commander Hundley Ford and post member Michael Jackson with an American flag that had been flown "in the face of the enemy."

It is the fourth flag the members of Post No. 5109 have received from troops stationed in Iraq, according to Hundley.

Hundley said they even received a thank you from a grateful British unit after an American soldier shared the contents of one of the Post 5109 "care packages" with them.

Since returning to the states, Young, who resides in Lewisburg, has become the newest member of VFW Post. No. 5109.