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A Shot Fired In Annoyance

October 5th, 2010 by Andrew_W

I have a younger brother in the 82nd Airborne, and when he came home for Christmas he shared with us a humorous tale that I thought you might enjoy or even put on the site.

My brother is a Rigger, in charge of packing chutes and rigging things for drops, for the 82nd Airborne. Recently he and his unit were sent on a short term mission to Afghanistan, doing a resupply drop for an isolated group. They dropped a few pallets of food and weapons along with two MRAPs but that is really secondary to the story. The planes stopped at Bagram to refuel and take on a few soldiers headed home so he had a few hours free in country. My brother and another soldier from his unit got permission and took off to a nearby hillside for chow and photos. As they sat eating their rations, the other soldier turned to my brother and pointed to an area down slope about twenty yards from them where little puffs of sand kept popping up. My brother looked to the horizon and saw three figures silhouetted on another hill and accompanying muzzle flashes. They took cover and called it in. The conversation with their CO went something along these lines (I’m repeating his words but he may have paraphrased, I don’t know).

Brother: Sir, we’ve got three hostiles firing on our position, approximately 500 yards
CO: Do you or SPC X feel threatened?
Brother; Not particularly Sir, they’re either really bad shots or we’re just beyond their range.
CO:; We’ll send a squad out to cover it, but I want the two of you to return to base as quickly as possible.
Brother Should we return fire Sir?
CO: Do not engage but use your discretion if you need to defend yourself.
Brother: On our way sir!

Brother to SPC X: About how far away would you say they are?
SPC X: 500 meters give or take
Brother: What’s the range on the 203 again?
SPC X: Max? 400 meters.
Brother: Hand me a grenade and get ready to run for the Hummer.

Brother fires off a grenade which falls short, but has the desired effect of causing the enemy to run, or at least get off the hilltop and they return to base without incident. They got smoked a bit for using a grenade when instructed not to engage, but considering they were under fire at the time it was halfhearted at best. Others in his unit now joke that he has never fired his rifle in anger, but he did use his grenade launcher in annoyance once.

Thought I’d share this one with the community. I can’t promise it’s all exact since it wasn’t me, but the incident did happen and I found the question “Do you feel threatened?” and response “Not particularly.” to be rather humorous, along with his new claim to fame of firing his 203 in annoyance.

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6 Responses to “A Shot Fired In Annoyance”

  1. Raymond Says:

    Yay, Riggers!
    Try jumping without us…
    It’s a really, really bad thing to piss off a Rigger,they wield sharp objects right next to your suspension lines, and if they’re distracted by anger, or annoyance, they might just leave a stow hook behind in one of the stow loops.


  2. Stonewolf Says:

    This almost sounds like it would be from the British.

    “Sir, I do believe the little chaps are shooting at us.”

    “Well good show. Sergeant, give them a little return fire to let them know we’ve noticed them and appreciate their efforts.”


    Tyr reply on October 5th, 2010 6:26 pm:

    That little exchange made my day.


    AFP reply on October 7th, 2010 9:59 pm:

    “I do say, Sir. I believe they’re shooting at us!”

    “Hm. Tea?”



  3. Jim A. Says:

    And if somebody tripped and cut themselves getting into the HMMWV, they’d be eligible for a purple heart.


  4. jmireles Says:

    Hmmm…a shot fired in annoyance…does that qualify as a “shot heard ’round the world”?


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