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"I put my life on pause for a year to help someone else for the rest of their life." (Video interview, 30:10)

   Bradley Keith Oxford
Collection image
Bradley Oxford [2005]
War: Iraq War, 2003-2011
Branch: Army
Unit: 1450th Transportation Company; Army National Guard
Service Location: Fort Stewart, Georgia; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Kuwait; Iraq
Rank: Specialist
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Like many citizen soldiers, Specialist Bradley Oxford joined the North Carolina National Guard as a means of funding his college education. While initially angered by his orders to deploy to Iraq, he was deeply affected by his interactions with the Iraqi people, and by the changes that he witnessed taking place in the country. His service in the Middle East convinced him that people everywhere have the same basic aspirations for honest work and a safe place to sleep at night, and he returned to North Carolina with a sense of the meaning and worth of his deployment.

Interview (Video)
»Interview Highlights  (5 clips)
»Complete Interview 
Download: video (35 min.)
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 Video (Interview Excerpts) (5 items)
Generally positive reaction on the part of Iraqi civilians to the American military presence; driving through downtown Sadr City reminded him of small town America. (00:36) Cramped quarters and extreme heat of life in the desert; strain of daily life; seeing the same people twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. (01:28) Taking leave at home after six months; visiting friends; not wanting to return, but feeling a sense of obligation and duty to his job and fellow soldiers; seeing different places in Iraq and Kuwait. (03:38)
Positive changes brought about by American military presence; witnessing the huge disparity of wealth and quality of living conditions in Iraq under Saddam Hussein. (02:34) Witnessing Iraqi civilians' dedication to building a new country and better future for their children; reassessing the meaning of his deployment. (02:02) 

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  October 26, 2011
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