Juneau soldier on the mend

Posted: Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Three days after the U.S. Army casualty center told Remy Carrillo her son was seriously injured in Iraq, an e-mail from Spc. Josel Carrillo put her mind at ease.

"He e-mailed me and told me he is OK and he will recover soon," Carrillo said Monday.

Staff at the casualty center called Carrillo on Friday morning to tell her Josel had been seriously injured while on patrol in Tikrit, Iraq. But Josel's e-mail said he was injured while on duty with the 173rd Airborne Brigade in Kirkuk, Iraq. The Associated Press reported Friday that one soldier in the 173rd was killed and two other injured in Kirkuk on Thursday when someone fired a rocket-propelled grenade at the soldiers' vehicle.

Josel Carrillo referred to that incident in his e-mail.

"I don't know how big the news is, but I just received (a friend's) e-mail saying that he already knows about the incident that I was in where two soldiers were wounded and one killed here in Kirkuk. I'm just writing to tell you that I am totally fine and am not too physically injured. I'll make a full recovery in a week. The two other guys aren't so lucky," he wrote.

Carrillo is a Juneau-Douglas High School graduate and a former JDHS soccer player. He has been stationed in Vincenza, Italy, since 2001. The 173rd parachuted into Kurdish-controlled northern Iraq on March 26 to open a northern front for U.S. forces.

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