Special Reports

A happy moment for Kirkuk's commissioner of traffic

1st Lt. Jason Gracida of Meridian has made a friend of the Kirkuk Commisioner of Traffic. Gracida asked Khalid Nassir Maryoush about his wife during a visit to the commissioner's office.

"She is well, thank you," Commissioner Maryoush replied.

"A little sick," he continued as he motioned a round shape near his belly.

"She's pregnant?" Gracida asked. "She's having a baby?" he clarified.

"Yes, Yes," Maryoush nodded, grinning ear to ear.

Gracida leapt from his chair to embrace the commissioner.

"All right!" he exclaimed. "Congratulations!"

The commissioner, obviously touched by Gracida's excitement, joked: "I will name Gracida" and gave the lieutenant the thumbs-up.

— Kim Hughes

1st Lt. Jason Gracida of Meridian worked the phones and radio as soldiers with Alpha Company responded to the scene of the attack on police officers at the Al-Adal police station Thursday morning.

Sitting beside him was Spc. Ken Harmon, of Buhl. "I just got back from leave yesterday," Harmon said, and a few minutes later Harmon was shaking his head.

— Kim Hughes