Subject: Paratroopers in Afghanistan
Hello and greetings from Afghanistan. My name is SGT Jordan Downs. I am in the 82nd Airborne Division. My Assault Platoon of Airborne Infantrymen and I are at a very (VERY) remote outpost in the Southern Afghanistan. At our small base, we do not have running water or plumbing, and electricity is very limited. We do, however, fly our US Flag with pride.
We survive off of MREs, water, and whenever we can (and their supplies allow), the food prepared by the Afghan National Army or local villagers. The district center here is extremely poor, even without the means to produce the lifeblood of the traditional Afghan meal – "foot" bread.
Morale here is good. I give my guys a lot of credit given the lack of supplies – emergency resupply of diesel fuel is continuously denied - and the rigorous patrol schedule required keeping the bad guys out of the area as much as possible. You can imagine that if we have such a hard time getting fuel what the response from "higher" is like when we request food items or anything to improve our humble "base".
We currently have two Smith Vortexes here; one M14 and a M4, and it makes all the difference between the typical A2 bird cage flash suppressors. The other squad leaders and I are currently working to outfit the whole platoon with the Vortex for our M4s, M249s, M14s, and the M240Bs that we have. We are hoping that you will be able to donate two Vortex Flash Eliminators for our M2s here. Our ultimate goal is to have every weapon here outfitted with the Vortex, minus our MK-19. Having the Vortex on every weapon system increases the safety and lethality of our platoon in our engagements with the enemy in the area.
Thanks again for your time and your support!
Sincerely and Respectfully,
Jordan Downs, SGT, Airborne Infantry
C Co 1-508 PIR
APO AE 09355
P.S. I have included a picture of a majority of my platoon for you. Also our mail has a habit of being stolen before it gets to us if it has cool identifying marks on it. Simple flat rate box works the best.
On a side note SGT Burrell and I are very interested in your M14 bar stock receiver. We are planning to build an M14 upon our return to the States. Could you also send us some info on your receiver? Thanks again for your support.
Rec’d January 02, 2010
Subject: Re: Paratroopers in Afghanistan
That is awesome news, thank you. We did a little demo out here, Vortex vs Birdcage, everyone one was amazed. PFC Headley stated "There is no flash with the Vortex." Our response was "Thats the point." As for the pictures, feel free to use them. I’ll send some more so you can pick and chose. The quality might not be great because I’m have to compress them for the email. Let me know how it looks. We’ll try and get some unit patches as when we can get to a big FOB. Sorry if this email is kinda bland, We just got got in from a 3 day outing. What can you do? Thanks again
AT-2 OutlawsRec’d March 18, 2011
Subject: Paratroopers in Afghanistan
We received the vortex flash eliminators about three weeks ago and let me tell you how extraordinary the whole thing has been for us. First of all it started with us recieving mail for the first time in about five and one half weeks and so there was alot. A few of my guys and my 1SG stared the typical army chain for unloading the mail with myself placing them in correctly divided area. Towards the end of the sorting process my 1SG will some harsh words tosses me a heavy box and asked me why I am ordering machine part form Smith Enterprise. Everyone form my platoon who was around kinda stopped, knowing what this means, while I stated that this was indeed a package from Smith Enterprise. A joyous aroma of laughter and excitment broke out with others going and telling other battle buddies about it. It was a good day with everyone receiving there much need mail. Then began the process of installing all the Vortexes (which I have included some pictures). There was a lot music excitement and jumping around. Someone explained it to me as he was a little kid on Christmas morning. For a little while everyone seem to forget where they were and just let "loose". A much needed escape.
So once again thank you for what you have done for us. And also if it is possible to get an address for you, my paltoon and I have some stuff that we would like to send you. I will pass that address to my buddies wife and she will mail the items. Since we have no mail system here.
Also I do have a question about going about having your company build me a rifle. One thing that I always to is to buy myself a gift after acomplishing an event. I bought myself and LWRC M6A2 after I graduated Jumpmaster school. I since I have found and new love, more of and infatuation or obsession with M14, I have decided that that's what I want. I had plans all along to build my one but I have been thinking that this would be a lot more meaningful. Since my platoon have a bond of some sort with SEI.
Thanks Again for your Support, you have given us alot more that just the some vortexes.
SSG Downs, Jordan