Soldier Stories: Timothy Tanner

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(Host) As a member of the Vermont National Guard in Iraq, Timothy Tanner of Barre Town spent the last year patrolling the Ramadi area in a tank. The work was hot and stressful.

Today in VPR’s series "Soldier Stories", Tanner describes a day in Iraq.

(Tanner) "Typical hard day is, you know, we go out in sector. It’s 120 degrees. So that’s hard to deal with, and not knowing when something’s going to happen. That’s the hardest part, you know. That’s why when you’re sitting in a tank you’re head’s on a swivel back and forth. And you’re always scanning and looking for improvised explosive devise in places. Improvised explosive devices, people shooting RPGs – rocket propelled grenades, small arms fire engagements, you’re always looking for everything, the signs, the symptoms as it were."

"I won’t say everyday we saw something, but most days something would happen, whether it be significant, whether it be small, something would happen. I made friends with a few kids, you know, at my position I would always wave to them, they’d always wave back. And they actually, when things happen they’d give us information as to who’s doing what."

"I did a few days on the ground and had my fill of it and went back into my tank cause that’s my job, and I love doing my job."

"Most of what I take is the guys that I worked with. It’s the stuff you go through. It’s hard to explain. The situations you get put in, the everyday things that happen. It’s just everything that goes on, you know, whether it be the combat action that you’re in or sitting down after a hard day and just eating dinner together."

(Host) The voice and reflections of Timothy Tanner. Tomorrow "Soldier Stories" concludes with David Swan of Chazy, New York.

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