20 December 2009

Christmas message from CSM Mellinger

Michael Yon posts an inspiring and touching message he received from Command Sergeant Major Jeff Mellinger to pass on to our troops downrange. Read it here.

Michael's readers are familiar with CSM Mellinger, who spent 34 (!) months in Iraq - from Aug 2004 to May 2007 - as the CSM for the entire Multi-National Force.

What many people don't know is that CSM Mellinger is still serving since he was drafted in 1972, making him the Army's only draftee on continuous active duty.

Meet CSM Mellinger up close and personal in this recent interview with Army Newswatch. One of my favorite parts is about the wind chime he made from the many screws and plates saved after they were used to repair various injuries sustained during his long career.

I had the pleasure and honor to briefly meet Jeff at Landstuhl back in 2007. He is just like this in person, and probably one of the easiest people to talk with that I've ever met. Jeff was also one of the few "DVs" who made a point to visit the outpatients when he came to Landstuhl, who back then were housed at a nearby post. That alone told me pretty much everything I needed to know about him, and I'll never forget it.

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