- Posted November 6, 2009 by
Fort Hood, Texas
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Fort Hood shooting
From the eyes of an Army wife at FT Hood
(note: this photo is of a memorial less than one mile from my home. in time, i'm sure we'll have a memorial for this tragedy, too.)
What happened here yesterday was beyond belief.
I pulled in to the driveway of my on-post residence and put my toddler down for a nap. As soon as I shut his door and tiptoed across our squeaky wooden floors out to the living room, I heard the gates to our installation slam shut.
It's not a pleasant sound. It's the kind of sound you expect to hear when something or someone very bad is on the way.
A few minutes later, the first of the warning sirens came on over the post-wide PA system. Attention! Seek shelter immediately. Lock windows and doors. Turn off heat, ventilation, and A/C systems. I repeat, seek shelter immediately.
That was it. That was all we got.
I'm no fool; we live in a targeted place. Was it an attack? Was someone trying to get into the installation that shouldn't be here? Were they already here, and now it's damage control?
My husband was at work when he called me, and he spoke low and quickly. He told me to shut the curtains, get down, and not to go outside. My mind was racing just as fast as my heartbeat. He's an intelligence officer. What does he know that I don't? I asked him why. "There's a gunman on post. Maybe more. Stay away from the windows. Listen, they're in ACUs. Don't open the doors. I love you, I have to go."
Of course, I just assumed that whoever it was had simply purchased ACUs from any number of local surplus shops. I refused to believe it was one of our own.
As the day unfolded and misinformation gave way to facts, I finally let myself realize that it was one of our own. This man came into our house, walked like us, and talked like us. He killed my brothers.
This Army is my family. That man put a hole in it.
I'm dumbfounded. My husband just had a board meet to get promoted to Major. To think of every connotation that rank carries and what it takes to get there, and then to think of that gunman (I refuse to say his name, and I refuse to give him a rank he doesn't deserve), I'm sick.
I was on edge the entire day, peeking from behind my blue curtains to see outside. A friend of mine also stationed here at Fort Hood texted me and told me he was on standby. They were in full gear with guns on their backs, and they were conducting security sweeps. And even though I understood one of our soldiers had just opened fire on his own and there could be more out there, the thought of our Army made me safe. I knew then that everything would be okay, and all of my anxiety was gone.
I trust my life to those soldiers.
I always will.
God bless this Army family.