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TJ aka Teej
04-27-2003, 11:33
First American Killed in Action in Iraq was A.T. Hiker
Connecticut's Hartford Courant this Sunday included an extraordinary story by Rinker Buck on the life and burial of Marine Lt. T. Shane Childers who, it turned out, "roamed the Appalachian Trail" on long weekend breaks in 1998-2002 from his studies at The Citadel in Charleston, S.C. He was known at that school for his rigorous physical conditioning. After eight years as an enlisted man, Childers, 26, was accepted in 1998 into a college program leading to an officer's commission. He was shot and killed almost instantly while leading his platoon in a firefight to capture an oilfield pumping station.

During the military build-up in the Persian Gulf over the winter, ATC received a number of orders over the Internet for A.T. books and other items from military men and women serving there. If you know of an A.T. hiker now stationed in Iraq or the gulf nations with a story to tell, please drop us a note at trailnews@appalachiantrail.org.
April 21, 2003

TJ aka Teej
04-30-2003, 23:01
A.T. Hikers in Iraq (continued)
Recognize "Sgt. Rock" from his contributions to other sites and his own (www.hikinghq.net)? Recently (maybe still) in Baghdad with an armored cavalry division, he is said to be looking forward to a thru-hike after he retires from the military. He took an A.T. thru-hike memoir on the flight to the Gulf, a friend reported over the weekend. And, he didn't give us a name, but a proud father also reported that his son who went with him on day-hikes in the Smokies and around Erwin, Tenn., as a younger teen-ager is in a Marine Corps unit that just left Baghdad.

CNN Correspondent Walter Rodgers, an A.T. backpacker normally based on the East Coast, told "Television Week" that his Trail travels were good preparation for a newsman embedded with a U.S. military unit moving across Iraq last month. "I didn't take anything I didn't use. I took virtually nothing that couldn't be thrown away." Well, maybe his Leave No Trace practices can get refreshed now that he's resting back in the Berkshires... For the full story, click here.

Keep the notes coming to trailnews@appalachiantrail.org we're interested in any A.T. hiker in Iraq in any capacity: military, relief agency, the news business, civilian federal employee, Iraqi-American going back to help form the new government, whatever.
April 28, 2003