Part of the emotional letting-go for the hospital staff and anyone present from the dead soldier’s unit was the Angel Flight. As staff and soldiers stand at attention and salute, the body is slowly driven past, to the waiting helicopter, which will take it to Balad, and then Dover.
The artist Steve Mumford originally went to Baghdad in 2003 to work as a war artist, embedded with the U.S. military, both writing a journal and making drawings and watercolors of what he saw there. In early 2007 he returned to Iraq for approximately a month, where he worked at an army hospital. This is the second of three reports on that trip. The first, "With Good Company into Iraq," was posted on Mar. 8, 2007. The archive for Mumford’s original "Baghdad Journal" can be found here