by Bob Stealey
In the times that I tune in to find out the latest news of the war in Iraq, I've been turning to MSNBC for what I've considered untainted and fairer, as well as more accurate, versions of what's happening in that land so many miles away.
While it's true there's been a lot of repetition on the news channels that I receive at home, from what I've observed, MSNBC has seemed to be the first to deliver late-breaking news developments to the viewing public.
Of course, it was truly sad to learn of the death Sunday of NBC/MSNBC reporter David Bloom as a result of a blood clot in his lung. His loss will be felt most by his wife and three daughters, but also by his NBC colleagues and the many friends he had.
It's true. Most of this has already been said on television and in local and national newspapers. But I'd be remiss if I didn't mention something about it, and what I'm about to say isn't exactly "new." However, as Peter Arnett and Bernard Shaw, then both of CNN, may have been considered the "stars" among the war reporters during Operation Desert Storm, many would argue that Bloom had done a top-quality job for his network right up until his untimely death.
The 39-year-old journalist had been co-anchor of the weekend "Today" show. In the course of covering the war, he was the second newsman to die within four days. The Atlantic Monthly editor-at-large and Washington Post columnist Michael Kelly was killed Thursday night with an American soldier when their vehicle plunged into a canal, the Associated Press reported earlier this week.
Pfc. Jessica Lynch of Palestine has undergone surgical procedures and, I'm sure, numerous medical examinations by Army physicians at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. Certainly she is enjoying her reunion with members of her family who flew to southwestern Germany to see her.
Surely she deserves her time of peace and quiet without a host of paparazzi following her entire ordeal. Still, I wouldn't have minded being a tiny bug on the wall to see her broad smile upon seeing her family.
After all, until her daring rescue, she had been considered missing in action by Army officials. We can only wish that her comrades could have been rescued. But I'm so very glad the Lynch family had its prayers answered.
Area resident Ken Dye contacted me after reading the poem "Supporting The Three" (in Bob'n'Along Friday) to say one verse was omitted. The original sender said it was from the 363rd Military Police of Grafton.
Mr. Dye said the poem is authored by Sgt. Allan L. Perkins, Battalion Retention NCO, 189 MP Battalion, Kentucky National Guard, as printed in Military Police Journal in the June 1991 issue.
Here's the verse inadvertently omitted from the first version:
" ... Armor, Cav and Infantry
"Rush headlong into the melee
"Breaking the lines like an angry sea
"Deep into enemy territory. ..."
Due to space, I was unable to reprint the entire poem. But for those who may still have the copy of my column, Mr. Dye said the omitted verse was to follow the third verse.
Editor Bob Stealey can be reached by phone at (304) 626-1438, or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org