This city’s main park, the entry way to its brief downtown, appears a lot more like a graveyard now.
Thirty-eight white wood crosses, knee-high, are planted between plants and spots of lawn, one for every single soldier associated with Fort Riley who has got died in Iraq. Most are pinned with farewell records from a neighbor, a other soldier, a young child; one cross is smudged with a lipstick kiss that is red.
Junction City, the city, and Fort Riley, the Army base that sits beside it in northeast Kansas, are bound together so tightly that folks right right here, as Mayor Mick Wunder claims, usually forget where one allows go and also the other sees. ”Like a relationship amongst the two,” Mayor Wunder states.
A soldier in the base, Staff Sgt. Dwight Thompson, places it less tenderly: ”Without us, Junction City would run dry and blow away.”
As America’s longest, deadliest suffered conflict since Vietnam has rolled in, Junction City in addition to other tiny towns tethered to armed forces bases throughout the country have believed the results of war in ways most places cannot. (more…)