UPDATE: We've collected well over $5,000. So, I'm pulling the plug on the links to donate. Thanks so much guys. I'm contacting the service member now, have his phone number, to let him know. I'm going to suggest it might be nice to share the money with other service members he knows have faced the same problem.
I've had it with the Bush administration. Enough is enough. Now they're charging US soldiers injured in Iraq for their lost body armor. Enough is enough. We liberal folk may disagree with the Bush administration over the reasons for going to war and over how they're fighting this war, but one thing you'd expect no disagreement over would be the treatment of our soldiers. They fight for their country and they deserve some respect in return. And that means not charging them for their body armor because someone blew them up on the battlefield.
This soldier had to pay $700 for his armor, and now is out trying to find work. He has friends who have faced the same cruel, ridiculous policy. Let's finally raise some cash for these guys and show the Bush administration how compassion really works.
I'm serious. I've set up a special PayPal donation fund. If you click the button below and donate, it will be earmarked with a special code so I'll know it's for the body armor fund. All the money collected, ALL OF IT, will go the soldier who was forced to pay for his armor, and if we get more than $700, I'll give him that as well to help him get back on his feet (he's now unemployed, and he says he knows other soldiers who have faced the same problem, if he wants, he can reimburse his pals who also had to pay for their armor).
I'm pissed. Please help.
From the Charleston Gazette-News:
The last time 1st Lt. William Â?EddieÂ? Rebrook IV saw his body armor, he was lying on a stretcher in Iraq, his arm shattered and covered in blood.
A field medic tied a tourniquet around RebrookÂ?s right arm to stanch the bleeding from shrapnel wounds. Soldiers yanked off his blood-soaked body armor. He never saw it again.
But last week, Rebrook was forced to pay $700 for that body armor, blown up by a roadside bomb more than a year ago.
He was leaving the Army for good because of his injuries. He turned in his gear at his base in Fort Hood, Texas. He was informed there was no record that the body armor had been stripped from him in battle.
He was told to pay nearly $700 or face not being discharged for weeks, perhaps months.
Rebrook, 25, scrounged up the cash from his Army buddies and returned home to Charleston last Friday.
"I last saw the [body armor] when it was pulled off my bleeding body while I was being evacuated in a helicopter,Â? Rebrook said. Â?They took it off me and burned it."
....Rebrook, who graduated with honors from the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y., spent more than four years on active duty. He served six months in Iraq.
Now, Rebrook is sending out résumés, trying to find a job. He plans to return to college to take a couple of pre-med classes and apply to medical school. He wants to be a doctor someday.
“From being an infantryman, I know what it’s like to hurt people,” Rebrook said. “But now I’d like to help people.” ?