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This blog exists only as an archive. It is a journal that serves as a window into my life as a Marine combat veteran serving in Iraq and Afghanistan; it was written with no filter, no politics and no agenda. Please feel free to follow my journey from beginning to end. Welcome to my life.

Monday, October 13, 2008


Just thought I'd let all my family and friends know that I am done with my tour in Afghanistan. I'm currently sitting around a camp that feels like its the safest place on earth, impatiently waiting for my flight back to the States.

I want to thank everyone for all the support that you have given myself and my teammates in the past few months, all the packages and emails (most of which I am just now reading) are sincerely appreciated.

Not exactly sure when I will actually reach the States, but I am hoping that it is in time to attend a Wisconsin football game. I need to find a flight and a ticket, but I'm not sure the latter will be hard with the way they have decided to play this year...

Thanks again for every thing.



  1. i am thrilled to "see" you again Jake. please stay safe.

  2. The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 10/14/2008 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

  3. Safe flight home, for you and all yours.

  4. Thank you so much for all you did for us over there!! I'm so glad to see that you're returning safely!! Lots of Love,

  5. Bravo, Marine! You da man.

  6. I'm glad that you made it through your tour safely...I've been praying for you.

  7. Thanks for all you do Jake. Hope you have something good to read on the flight home.

    Scappoose, OR

  8. Glad to hear your coming home!

  9. I hope this comment finds you safe at home enjoying a cold beer and some college football. Thanks for all you have done for your country.

  10. Everyone here is lucky to have you coming home again Jake. Hopefully you can get those Badgers to start playing better!! Have a safe flight.

    Jen Walter

  11. Jake,
    i am so happy you are headed home.
    but still sad cause my Marine doesnt come home till DEC.i worry about him every day...he tells me not to he is just doing his job....but i cant help it.i want him home...safe with me.
    Wish i got the chance to actually write you.
    You can find me on yahoo if you ever wish to talk.
    thank you for everything you do.

  12. Jake,

    I hope you enjoy your time back home! Again, I have so much respect for what you have done since we graduated from PVHS in 2001. If you're even in the Boston area, the beers or whatever you want are on me. Take care.

    John Miller

  13. Glad to hear you're safe and coming home to your family very soon! Thank you and your teammate for all your service to this GREAT nation. We appreciate every single one of you and your families!

    Safe journey!

  14. Jake, safe travels. Looking forward to any posts or emails you can send sharing more about your experience in Afghanistan.

    Hoping for a Badger win this weekend!. I understand how important these UW/Iowa games are - I married into a big Hawkeye family.

    Go Badgers!

  15. I am glad to hear that your tour is done and to you and everyone else, have a safe trip back!! I look forward to reading more of your posts!

  16. Hi Jake, I just wanted to leave a note of encouragement and thank you for what you are doing/have done to help better this world. I learned of your blog when a professor of mine who was a former professor of yours at the University of Wisconsin, Mark Schrad, used your blog in my PS 282 class at the University of Illinois as an example of an excellent use of writing. After hearing of your blog, I, like so many others, went home and read through many of them. I must say that I was so encouraged to see a warrior such as yourself standing up for the good of others in the face of grave danger. I believe that we are all fighting a battle of one kind or another in this world, but not many of us are fighting in such an explicit and sacrificial way. Thank you for being an encouragment to me to fight my little battles in life and giving me an example of a life that is of a true warrior. It grieves me, though, to see that so many people our age die to fight for what they believe, but then again, this life isn't about living for ourselves, is it. We are living for a greater purpose beyond ourselves.
    I just wanted to send you this note and let you know that there are many people impacted by your life; even random students in a small university town in Champaign, IL and I hope that can be an encouragment to you because you've been an encouragment to me. So keep on living like you have been!

    Emily Fotzler
    University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
    Political Science & Spanish 2009