06 November 2007

"...that's when I started to laugh"

Lt. Gen. Kenneth Hunzeker [Commander of V Corps] visits Army Spc. Sean Staggs, 21, from the 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment out of Vilseck, Germany. Staggs was wounded near Bahgdad when his vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb. Photo by Ben Bloker / S&S.

“When it blew up, I was knocked out for a minute,” he recalled. “When I came to, everyone was screaming. I didn’t know what was going on. I was confused.

“Then the pain hit. It was agony.”

At that point, he said, he resorted to some profanity.

“I tried to stand up. I fell on my face.”

He crawled his way over to an abandoned building, along with the other soldiers, and they called for a medical Stryker, he said.

They realized they were going to be OK. That’s when he started to laugh, he said.

“We were hurting,” Staggs said, “but everything else was fine.”

SPC Staggs and three other soldiers were wounded when a roadside bomb hit their Stryker on Oct. 21 in Baghdad. He's had surgery on his ankle which was shattered in the explosion. Staggs hopes to go back after he recuperates.

“I definitely want to go back. My team’s still there.”

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