2011 Third Squad
Patrol Base Fires, Sangin District, Helmand Province, Afghanistan
3rd Squad, 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Marines
Name and Rank:
Lance Corporal John Richard "Bo" Bohlinger
Hometown: Cheyenne, Wyoming.
"It's like a firefight in a minefield."
How does Sangin compare with your expectations?
"When we were first coming I was honestly expecting you couldn't move without hitting an IED and there were Taliban everywhere, and everyone was getting shot and blown up . . . that was my expectation . . . and it has not let me down."
"I don't think I had respect for the IEDs that I do now after seeing a few friends get hit. Knowing that you can step right next to one or sit with one right between your legs and never know it's there until someone steps on it and dies."
What do you think the Taliban are fighting for?
"I think in their minds they think they're doing the right thing . . . it's just different ideals. I think they're thinking that they're winning the war and they're showing that America can't run the world."
What's the hardest part of your job?
"I'm an RO, radio operator. The hardest part of my job has to be calling up casualties. I hate calling up casualties 'cause it's my friends and my brothers that're fucked up . . . yeah, that's the hardest part."
Talk about one of your friends who was killed.
"My closest friend of the whole thing was Lance Corporal McDaniels . . . We had this joke going that if we took contact , I was gonna get up with him on point and he was gonna sweep right towards the fire and we were both gonna take extremity wounds and go home to our wives. You know, be in the hospital together and shit so we wouldn't be alone . . . that's the last thing I said to him before he fucking got blown in half."
How do you deal with so much death and injury?
"In just over a month we lost over a third of our platoon . . . I don't know, at first . . . it just fucking hu
- @ Elliott D. Woods 2011
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