Good People: Gunnery Sgt. Erik E. Duane, USMC
"Good People" is a section of posts I started in order to highlight those people who lend a hand in making their world a better place to live in, or just try to help out where they can. Sadly, I haven't gotten back to it in quite a while, mostly out of sheer lunkheaded-ness. I'll try to do more of these in the future, though...just because after a while, talking about the dark side of people gets to be too much sometimes.
Most of you probably already know who Blackfive is. For those who don't, he is a very highly esteemed Milblogger (military blogger). A former soldier himself, Matt Burden started the "Blackfive" blog to pay tribute to a fallen friend, and then extended his mission to include all fallen soldiers, and to support and defend those still serving. His series of posts telling the stories of individual soldiers, titled "Someone You Should Know", are widely read throughout the blogosphere, and for good reason. Few people have our fighting men and women's backs like this guy does.
Recently, Matt was granted permission from Central Command Public Affairs to conduct an interview with Marine Gunnery Sgt. Erik E. Duane, a Civil Affairs detachment chief with the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, based in the area of Al-Asad Air Base in Iraq. In his position, Sgt. Duane deals intimately with Iraqi military, police and civilians in assisting efforts to keep the Iraqi communities in his area safe, secure and operating more and more under their own influence. In short, his charge is to help the Iraqi people in his care give Iraq back to themselves.
Here lies the interview. It's a great picture of what American soldiers are all about, and one more little piece of what's REALLY happening on the ground out there....from one of a great many Good People helping it happen.