A northern Iowa soldier on duty in Iraq has discovered he’ll be home for Christmas. Steven Jordal of Forest City is part of the 101st Airborne Air Assault division and he’s serving in northern Iraq, near the town of Mosul. Jordal says of the 140 people in his company, only 40 are getting a “mid-tour leave” and his will come in December. Jordal says he’ll be home for Christmas and New Year’s, so he “got a pretty good end of the deal” when it came to the timing of his leave. The soldiers in Jordal’s company work to find explosive devices and handle security detail. Jordal is able to watch American television, and he’s noticed the patriotism exhibited at sporting events. Jordal says they watch the news and sports via satellite TV. He says it’s unfortunate that something so bad had to happen for Americans to be more patriotic and wave the flag. Jordal says it is good to see everybody at home backing the soldiers in Iraq. He says soldiers have been getting random letters from Americans who are just writing to say thank you. Jordal says getting a letter is a “real morale boosting thing over here.” Jordal says he’s sustained by the hope that when he returns to the states permanently after his tour of duty in Iraq, he’ll be coming home to something better. Jordal says the soldiers try to forget that when they’re out and about in Iraq, there are people there who want to kill them. Jordal says he just tries to put all that in the back of his mind and focus on the good things in life and the belief that everyone in his unit will return home safely.
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