A Cook-Out Brings Home To Afghanistan

  • Playlist
  • Download
  • Embed
    <iframe src="" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Throughout our show this Memorial Day weekend, we're hearing from members of the 182nd Infantry Regiment of the Army National Guard. In this installment, Spc. Kory Desmond tells us of a moment that felt close to being back at home.


Throughout our show this Memorial Day weekend, members of the 182nd National Guard are sharing memories of a year spent at war.

SPECIALIST KORY DESMOND: I am Specialist Kory Desmond and some of my memories is of a cookout. When I got to Afghanistan on this little base, it's right on the Pakistan border basically, the eastern part of Afghanistan. Me and couple of guys thought to cook for a cookout. And after our whole summer there in Afghanistan and not being able to have any cookouts, it was a pretty good time.

We did it right in our little living area. For the grill, they had a big 50 gallon drum half grill that they put together. It got welded, these different metals just to make a grill top. We were able to get some cookies and potato salad from the dining facility. But one of my friends, Rick, he's like a junior chef or something like that - we were able to get some spices and stuff from some civilian engineers. And we invited them to the cookout, as well, because of it.

And with all those spices we got from them, we added them to the burgers, to the chicken, and barbecue sauce just made the taste somewhat better. We had the cookout all night. They made this game - two plywood boards with the hole in (unintelligible) and beanbags (unintelligible). So they called it Corn Hole or something. They made that and we had that for outside barbecue games.

The cookout was at least 30, 40 people. We just kept cooking and cooking. It was like when you have a big cookout for your friends back home and you just keep throwing on more burgers, and you're stuck their all day. Unfortunately, we didn't have beers but it felt like a normal day to us; closest we could get, I suppose.

MARTIN: Specialist Kory Desmond.

Copyright © 2012 NPR. All rights reserved. Visit our website terms of use and permissions pages at for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio.



Please keep your community civil. All comments must follow the Community rules and terms of use, and will be moderated prior to posting. NPR reserves the right to use the comments we receive, in whole or in part, and to use the commenter's name and location, in any medium. See also the Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Community FAQ.

NPR thanks our sponsors

Become an NPR sponsor

Support comes from