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There’s a saying in this unholy place. You can tell who’s an American soldier by the sunglasses. Minus uniform, which he never is, those glasses give him away, and the swagger, for sure. The kids hang around and emulate that swaggering walk, like you’re Clint Eastwood and they all wanna be you. I might add Don said, that while the kid wants to be you, he’d kill you in a New York minute if it pleased him to do so and never mind the Koolaid or candy he was about to receive. 
Don’s little soliloquy was for his own amusement to himself in the little shaving mirror, because who gave a rats ass about your philosophical musings? But he thought his observations were right on target and as a medic and a possible New Ernie Pyle, he remembered and memorized every experience and when the occasion allowed, drew the pictures to match.
The 18 hour shift loomed and he was going to skip the shave, hoping not to meet the spit polished major who had never been outside the wire since he arrived. A 60 pound ruck with supplies affixed and he was ready to go, the heat now noticeable, well over the century mark. His friendlies, the mostly wild dogs greeted him, expecting a handout as per usual, Bye guys, see you when the sunsets. One of the dogs was his busom buddy though and Don called him Jack Dempsey because he looked like a fighter, in fact this bruiser was a cream puff, spending all Don’s off hours, sleeping on Don’s cot, sharing MRE’s and sundry other comestibles. Take care Jack I’ll be back in a few.
But this day Jack was not to be dissuaded, he followed, and could not be made to go “home”, a bad decision.
Don awoke in a truck and an animal, oh it was jack Dempsey, was lying on top of him. You’re gonna be ok Sarge, don’t worry about a thing, the platoon crowded around while Jack rumbled a feeble growl. That dog saved you is all I can tell you Don. He wouldn’t leave you and the pressure of his weight kept you from bleeding out, so that’s why he’s here like this, he’s okay till we get you medevac’d anyhow, Jack himself was bleeding from IED shrapnel and Don asked them to see to him but Jack wouldn’t be moved. I think it’s hopeless Don, the dogs gonna die we’ll do him a favor and shoot him. No Hollered Don, if you do you’ll have two dead on you hands. You’ve got me in a moment of weakness but you can’t do that.
Don can’t do much walking these days and neither can Jack, both are minus a leg, and Jack sits on Don’s lap when he’s in the chair out doing a book promo for Jack Dempsey’s Other Talent a new release, Jack proudly wears his citation around his neck.

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