The day I blew myself up and almost killed my Navy EOD team

The day I blew myself up and almost killed my Navy EOD team

Navy EOD stories military explosive ordnance disposal personal journal

Military stories | Navy EOD story #4 | The day I blew myself up and almost killed my team

What you will find in this military story article

  • A question for you, the reader

  • the mission

  • traveling down the dirt roads of iraq

  • iraqi police station

  • loading and exploding

  • disposal

  • afterthoughts

  • Comment section



    A question for you, the reader

    What has been your closest brush with death, and how did you handle it?   Leave your comment in the comment section.   In this post, you will learn about one of my many brushes with death


Disposing of the captured enemy ordnance from this story.

Disposing of the captured enemy ordnance from this story.

Let’s take a look at this picture. 

Looking at this picture, it is hard to believe that everything you see in the picture along with a whole lot more  you cannot see almost blew up in my face.    I will discuss how it happened and the horrors of what would have happened had my luck been different on this day.


The mission

This Navy EOD military story starts out with 3 members of my detachment and two members of our sister detachment.

Our mission today was to travel the powder dust roads of Iraq to an police station to pickup, and dispose of about 2000 lbs of captured enemy ordnance consisting mostly of IEDs that had been disarmed by the Iraqi army.

I would like to say for the record that I absolutely hated traveling anywhere in a Humvee, and I will say I hated traveling in Iraq in a Humvee with 1000 lbs of explosives strapped to your ass where at any moment during the transit we could be struck by an IED.


Traveling down the dusty roads of Iraq


The trip was somewhat uneventful other than our sister detachment managing to run over some razor wire getting some of it wrapped up around one of the tires making quite the sight for the locals as they tried to get it unfucked with the help of Iraqi police

Of course we busted out the cameras and proceeded to film the unfortunate event.  I have the video somewhere on my lost hard drive. 


Iraqi police station

Finally we made it to the Iraqi police compound.  There were quite a lot of people in the compound and it felt like all eyes were on us.

We started loading up various types of IEDs. Lots of improvised containers full of homemade explosives, from propane tanks of various sizes to plastic containers and landmines which look exactly like the one in my smells like gunpowder story.


Loading and exploding


So we started loading up all of the confiscated ordnance slowly filling the covered trailer.   One by one we began filling up the first trailer.  At one point I hopped in the back to help everything in as neatly as I could.  

The trailer had room for 1 more large propane tank.  I happened to be the person carrying that propane tank.

I lifted the heavy explosive filled tank up and set it in the trailer.  It wasn’t quite all the way in so I tried to shift it slightly.

Suddenly my whole body was hit with a concussive crack that shook every air void in my body.  I stood there in shock, confused as to what just happened.  A fighter jet engine was roaring.  through my eardrums, and clouds of baby powder dust swirled around me.

 I didn’t feel any pain which was either good or bad. I was quickly ran my hands over all my body to make sure nothing was missing.  I glanced next to me and saw our interpreter doing the same.

Our interpreter for whatever reason must have been helping load or something.  I can’t remember why he was even there. 

We looked at each other with confusion asking one another if we were ok in a comical you had to be there kind of way.  I am not exactly sure how we even heard each other with the jet engine in my head.

I glanced around and saw everyone in the compound staring at us in awe of what just happened. 

I am not sure what happened in the next few moments but my next memory is us huddled together try to figure out exactly what just happened.

The only thing we could come up with was some explosives had fallen out of one of the IEDs and powdered the metal floor of the trailer. When I sat the tank down and adjusted it, the explosive powder detonated.


The disposal

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Honestly I can’t remember in between the compound and building up the demolition charges to get rid of all the captured enemy ordnance but I do remember the very large explosion that it created which really made me thing about what would have happened to everyone in that compound including myself, my team, the Iraqi police and any civilians in the area.  

Afterthoughts of this Navy EOD military story

I am fortunate that the explosive powder did not sympathetically detonate all of the other explosive in the trailer because that would have turned me into pink mist and killed the 40+ people in the compound.

Writing this is story has forcing me to feel the feelings of that day for the first time.  After exposing and allowing myself to feel these feelings I am happy to report that the pain, fears and worries are becoming less powerful with each experience.  

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