Soldier heading back to Iraq - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Soldier heading back to Iraq

August 14, 2005

Omega-- There's been 11 combat-related deaths to 48th Brigade soldiers in Iraq. Soldiers are working hard to keep up the morale while fighting the war. One soldier will be on his way back in a few days. Mike Purvis has been with Tifton's Sheriff's Department for 7 years. He's now taking his knowledge of fighting crime to fighting the war overseas. 

"We lost uhhh...lost 11 in ten days and it's hard. It's real hard," says an emotional Purvis. It's very hard for him to talk about the 48th Brigade soldiers in Iraq. "It's rough. It's rough," says Purvis. He's part of the war effort and is only home for a few days. "I got home last Sunday afternoon," says Purvis.

He decided to trade his uniform as a Deputy of Traffic Enforcement with Tifton's Sheriff's Departmen for a uniform of helmet and camouflage to fight the war with Georgia's National Guard. "I'd rather us be over there doing it than right here in our country doing it," says Purvis. But he's home taking a temporary break.

"When we saw him come off the plane last Sunday, that was just the best thing I've seen in my life. It couldn't have been any sweeter," says his wife Kristy Purvis. His wife Kristy is making sure he's well fed and taken care of before he heads back, a day she could never be prepared for. "You can't but you have good days and bad days," says Kristy.

These next few days are good days for her and the family because he's home but they do know that the day he's leaving again is right around the corner. "God's going to look after him. I can't be there to cook for him and look out for him but God will," says his mother Sue Purvis.

Although they'll miss him, they are proud for what he's sacrificing. "He's always loved the service and law enforcement and now he has both of them," says Sue. It's a sacrifice that has Mike torn between family and fighting.

"It's hard to leave my wife and my family and all my friends here but I have another family over there that I need to go and do what I can do so we can all come back," says Purvis. His family here is sending him back with hugs and well wishes. He leaves again for Iraq on the 23rd. He says the next few days here will be extra special for him and his family.

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