Army Specialist Finds Signs of Life in Iraq's Ruins Helen Gerhardt enlisted in the U.S. Army in May 2000. She was 33 years old. Three years later, having just completed her degree, she found herself in the Middle East with the Missouri Army National Guard, 1221st Transportation Company.

Army Specialist Finds Signs of Life in Iraq's Ruins

Army Specialist Finds Signs of Life in Iraq's Ruins

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Helen Gerhardt enlisted in the U.S. Army when she was 33 years old. She has written extensively about her experience serving in Iraq. Scroll down to read Gerhardt's letter home. hide caption

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Extra Interview

Gerhardt on the Responsibility of Being an American

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Similarities with the Peloponnesian War

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Helen Gerhardt enlisted in the U.S. Army in May 2000. She was 33 years old. Three years later, having just completed a double undergraduate major in fine arts and English literature, she found herself in the Middle East with the Missouri Army National Guard, 1221st Transportation Company.

Gerhardt drove 18-wheeled tractor-trailers throughout Iraq. In an e-mail to loved ones back in Missouri, she shared her first impressions of the Iraqi people and their country. The e-mail, entitled "Here Among the Ruins," was chosen as part of the book Operation Homecoming.

Helen Gerhardt is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Nonfiction at the University of Pittsburgh. She is writing a book about her unit's experiences in Iraq and the larger culture wars which divide us both nationally and internationally.

This series is produced by Barrett Golding of HearingVoices.com.

Operation Homecoming
By Andrew Carroll, Dana Gioia

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