Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Grandmother deployed to Iraq

A grandmother in eastern Iowa is getting one last call to duty.

Janet Grass, 52, had planned to retire from the military in about 10 months after spending 19 years in the U.S. Navy Reserve. Instead, she has been ordered to leave her job as a special-education teacher in Cascade to do security work in the Middle East.

"They're changing my career just as I'm retiring," she said. "I guess they wanted to try one more thing for me."

Grass boarded an airplane Thursday at the Dubuque Regional Airport amid emotional goodbyes from her family, which includes four children and six grandchildren. Grass will train in California and Texas before deploying to Iraq for 12 to 18 months.

"Being over there is being in a different world," said her son Tim, who has also served in the military. "It's about being mentally strong to face things that will confront her. She's good. She'll do fine."

Grass, a petty officer first class, recalled how her son had also served in Iraq in 2003.

"I'm taking over for Tim," she said, smiling as she prepared to board the airplane. "I get to play in the big sandbox and teach them to play nice. That's the teacher in me."

Grass said the toughest part of shipping out was saying goodbye to 300 youngsters at Cascade Elementary School, where a send-off assembly was conducted in her honor. "It was a rough one," she said.

As Grass prepared to board the airplane, a grandson grabbed her leg in embrace. She smiled at the boy. "I'll be back," she said.

Her sisters Julie Small and Jolene Petesch stood nearby, sobbing and holding each other in support. Tim Grass, holding a small American flag, watched his mother pass through the terminal gate as other family members questioned the timing of the deployment.

"I think it's wrong," Jolene Petesch said, noting that her sister was about to retire from the military. "The military screwed up there, and I'm angry about it.

"It's another Vietnam. We don't belong there, but I still support our troops."

Source : Here.


Blogger herooftime01 said...

How sad. Hope everything works out.

May 03, 2006 2:09 am  
Blogger G_in_AL said...

volunteer force... no free lunch there. Hate it for her, but dont try to tug heart strings over this one, she surely got her pay and assistance from the Government for 20+ years... it's under the agreement that when they need you, they need you. Sucks that she's almost going to retire, but thats the way it is.

May 03, 2006 4:53 pm  
Blogger thepoetryman said...

And out of the mist rises a beutiful story, yet, in a way, an ugly story! The US government should be ashamed! Thank you for posting this. i have been inspired to pen some verse! :>) I'll link you here!

May 03, 2006 5:25 pm  
Blogger thepoetryman said...

"beautiful" :>(

May 03, 2006 5:25 pm  
Blogger Hype said...

"It's another Vietnam. We don't belong there, but I still support our troops."

ain't that the truth!


May 03, 2006 6:28 pm  
Blogger _H_ said...


Good to see you again :-) . Those were the words that hit home to me too

Poetry man.

I have been reading your work, fantastic stuff. I look forward to popping by and reading your latest.


Not tugging heart strings , I just think its sad.

May 03, 2006 6:46 pm  
Blogger Hype said...

BTW, have you heard all the talk about Colbert laying down a serious smackdown at the correspondent's dinner?

The video is all over the place. Simply delicious!


May 03, 2006 6:49 pm  
Blogger Hype said...

I also hear Rove is going down this week or next. (Nothing official yet)


May 03, 2006 6:54 pm  
Blogger _H_ said...

I did notice it being mentioned on the daily show . will check it out


Rove ... oh god i hope so , If only we still had dissent :-( these stories are perfect for dionysus.

still the fight goes on ...

May 03, 2006 6:59 pm  
Blogger Hype said...

you have to see the video of Colbert. if you haven't been watching Colbert on Comedy Central then you might not get it.

Colbert is sooo good at what he does that even I didn't get him at first.

His show gets better every night. He plays the fake O'Riley character very well.

"Reality has a well known Liberal Bias." --Stephen Colbert


May 03, 2006 7:20 pm  
Blogger Atuque the Old said...

That is life, power corrupt. absolute power corrupt absolutely. I do wish ther is still soviet union. at least there will be somebody to check on the US

May 03, 2006 8:26 pm  

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