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Workers Organize Items of Slain Troops, Send to Loved Ones

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No Exit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-23-06 10:37 PM
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Workers Organize Items of Slain Troops, Send to Loved Ones
Personal effects depot takes on solemn duty

Workers organize items of slain troops, send them to loved ones

Monday, October 23, 2006

By JOSH WHITE / The Washington Post

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. Spread across several tables in a vast warehouse here are the pieces of one soldier's life. There is the photo album with images of graduations and family gatherings, tanks and smiling military buddies. There are piles of brown T-shirts and socks, a jumble of sneakers and boots, a plastic bag filled with handwritten letters. A knife. A stack of video games.

Nearby, surrounded by walls of metal mesh, are rows of dusty black footlockers that have just returned from war. Inside each are the artifacts of other lives cut short.

This is the Joint Personal Effects Depot, a pair of warehouses on this base northeast of Baltimore that serve as the military's main repository for the possessions of U.S. troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Within days of troops' deaths in action, their clothes, pictures and books and everything else that defined their lives on the battlefield wind up here.


A photograph of two young children peeked out of a plastic bag in front of Pfc. Ricketts. Spec. Tyrone Wheatley placed woodworking magazines into a footlocker and glanced at a clipboard. Dirty socks, shirts and shorts were streaked with desert dust and grime, the pile giving off the scent of the soldier's sweat, fresh from the Iraqi summer heat. A little bit of Baghdad.


Jenna Bush to her child, some 10 years from now: "That's a statue of your granddaddy. He killed lots of people so we could be even richer than we already were!"
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NEOBuckeye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-24-06 01:40 AM
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1. Wonder how much Depleted Uranium gets processed through there? n/t
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