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Images: Wounded Warriors visit Air Cav on journey back to Iraq [Image 2 of 6]

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Wounded Warriors visit Air Cav on journey back to Iraq

After receiving a humorous message through the crew chief headset, Sgt. Omar Avila from Brownsville, Texas, enjoys a laugh, while learning the basic functions of an AH-64D Apache attack helicopter at Camp Taji, Iraq, Feb. 4. Avila was visiting the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, U.S. Division–Center, as part of Operation Proper Exit, a program which brings wounded Soldiers from Iraq back to the country to give them a sense of finality to their combat experiences in Iraq. Due to injuries from an improvised explosive device in 2007, Avila had his right foot amputated and suffered extensive burns.



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Public Domain Mark
This work, Wounded Warriors visit Air Cav on journey back to Iraq [Image 2 of 6], by 1LT Alun Thomas, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:02.04.2010

Date Posted:02.06.2010 12:10

Photo ID:248431

VIRIN:100204-A-#####-156

Resolution:2100x1391

Size:489.65 KB

Location:CAMP TAJI, IQGlobe

Gallery Images

More Like This

  • Sgt. Omar Avila (left) tells the story of how he and Sgt. Jay Fain (center) made the decision to participate in Operation Proper Exit and the reactions of their families when they told them they would be returning to Iraq. Both men were wounded in separate attacks in 2007 while serving with 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. Soldiers from 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division had the opportunity to hear the stories of six wounded warriors and two military mentors during a visit to the Warrior Chapel, Feb. 1.
  • Sgt. Omar Avila, (left) accepts a commander's coin from Brig. Gen. William Hall (right), commander of the 136th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, Texas Army National Guard, during a recent Operation Proper Exit visit at Camp Phoenix, Afghanistan Mar. 3. Avila, along with eight other warriors wounded during their earlier combat tour to Iraq and Afghanistan, recently returned to the battlefield to find closure and support.  Operation Proper Exit sponsored the trip in hopes of helping the warriors come to accept their injuries and their new lives. Avila, a Brownsville, Texas native, joined the group after rehabilitation at Brooke Army Medical Center. Avila sustained severe burn injuries caused by an improvised explosive device attack. He now works in the Troops First program to mentor others with more recent injuries. "I don't want ten years to go by and we all forget where it all happened, what we sacrificed, and the progress the coalition has made in this country," Avila said.
  • Wounded warrior Sgt. Jay Fain (left), a Columbia, S.C., native, looks on as Sgt. Omar Avila, a Brownsville, Texas, native, shares his story for the Soldiers gathered in the division conference room of 1st Armored Division, U.S. Division-Center, Feb. 3. The wounded Soldiers visited as participants of Operation Proper Exit IV, sponsored by the Troops First Foundation, an organization supported by the United Service Organizations. Fain currently studies physical therapy and Avila tours local schools as a motivational speaker. (U.S. Army photo/Sgt. Phillip Valentine)
  • Retired Sgt. Omar Avila, a wounded warrior participating in Operation Proper Exit, answers questions from soldiers with the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team on Forward Operating Base Shank Feb. 27, 2013, in Logar province, Afghanistan. Operation Proper Exit brings wounded warriors back to talk to fellow service members about their stories and experiences. (U.S. Army Photo by Spc. Alexandra Campo/Released)

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