Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2004]
During my year long deployment as an Army Dentist in Kuwait and Iraq, I witnessed a very different "conflict" than what is currently portrayed by the news media. I saw many wonderful and miraculous things as the people of Iraq worked with our servicemen and women to rebuild their country. We went into the villages to provide dental exams and treatment. We would care for the Iraqi children first, then their grateful parents.
I accompanied Army Veterinarians as they worked to rebuild the Baghdad zoo and conducted classes to teach simple spay and neutering surgeries to their Iraqi counterparts. I spent a full day sorting a warehouse full of toys sent by the American people for the Iraqi children.
I saw many valiant works of service between our two countries. I also saw miracles preserve our soldiers. This photo shows the building adjacent to the Ibn Sina hospital that took a mortar through the window at 2:30 AM. Miraculously, all the soldiers billeted in this room were downstairs playing poker and were not injured.
The most miraculous event I witnessed showed how a tooth saved a sergeant's life!
Christmas Eve morning a soldier came into our clinic at the Ibn Sina Hospital in downtown Baghdad covered in his own blood. He recounted an incredible story. Early Christmas Eve morning, two squads were assigned to sweep and clear two adjacent homes where Iraq terrorists were holed-up. The patient,
When he presented early that morning Major Kimberly Perkins, our oral surgeon, took a panograph and discovered the incredible truth. The 9mm bullet did NOT miss
Here is the pan with the bullet clearly visible, embedded in the upper lip.
SGT C is a citizen soldier — a reservist. When he returns to the states, the Army will see he has an implant replacement for the missing #8. Meanwhile, the prosthodontist in Baghdad, LTC Richard Druckman, made him an acrylic interim treatment partial. When
SGT C smiled and said, "This is why you should always brush your teeth!"
By AnnaLee Kruyer DDS
Las Vegas, NV
Origins: Dr. AnnaLee Kruyer served as a captain on an Army dental team in Iraq and Kuwait from 2003 through the spring of 2004, providing a good deal of necessary and routine dentistry (e.g., root canals, wisdom tooth extraction, broken teeth).
"It was day and night," she said. "The light we had, you can equate it to a reading light. That's the light we had to do surgery with. It was ridiculous."
Patients were treated in what Kruyer called a "glorified lawn chair."
"You know the Army. It was probably a $1,200 lawn chair," she said. "They had to be able to squish your dental chair into the back of a truck."
"You can see the Iraqi's point of view: You shoot an American in the face, and they keep coming at you. 'Damn, they're tough. I quit,'"
As for the sergeant, his injuries were largely cosmetic. Kruyer's team fixed that right up, popping in a fake tooth.
"So he could smile the rest of the war," she said.
Sofradzija, Omar. "LV Dentist Recounts Service in Middle East." Las Vegas Review-Journal. 1 January 2005.