Michelle Poole

Ohio Historical Society
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00:00:09 - Introduction

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Segment Synopsis: Michelle Poole was born in Galion, Ohio in April of 1981. Since she was young she was heavily influenced by her family's military experience, in particular an uncle’s service in Desert Storm. She joins the 142nd Infantry Regiment of the Ohio National Guard to help pay for college. She is assigned as a 92-A, Automated Logistical Specialist, but reclassified her MOS to become an 88-M, driving heavy trucks. She talks about her family's military heritage, joining the Ohio National Guard, and her college plans. She discusses having her first child, her Advanced Infantry Training, and reclassifying.

Keywords: Fort Hunter Liggett (Calif.); Fort Lee (Va.); Galion (Ohio); Ohio. Army National Guard; Ohio. National Guard. Infantry Regiment, 142nd; US Army Quartermaster School; United States Army Training Center, Infantry (Fort Jackson, S.C.)

Subjects: Childhood; College; Enlisting in the Ohio National Guard; Military heritage

GPS: US Army Quartermaster School
Map Coordinates: 37.2168507,-77.3415506
GPS: United States Army Training Center, Infantry (Fort Jackson, S.C.)
Map Coordinates: 34.0111506,-80.9440147
00:27:39 - Mobilization and Deployment to Iraq

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Segment Synopsis: Poole mobilized with the 1st platoon of the 1486th Transport Company February 18th 2004, where she was stationed at Camp Navistar. Poole talks about her wedding, mobilizing at Camp Atterbury, and her trip to Iraq. She also discusses preparing for the culture, the questions about their mission, and life at Camp Navistar.

Keywords: Ashland Armory (Ashland, Ohio); Camp Atterbury (Ind.); Camp Navistar (Kuwait); United States. Army. Transportation Company, 1486th

Subjects: Camp Navistar; Mobilization; Training

GPS: Camp Navistar (Kuwait)
Map Coordinates: 30.0827719,47.6783245
00:58:00 - Easter Ambush and Hauling Missions

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Segment Synopsis: In April the Mahadi Army seized the Baghdad International Airport where Poole was sent. Poole's battle buddies were in the fighting and Poole was order to stay in her truck during the ambush. Poole talks about noticing something different in the air before the fighting started. She discusses the mission, coming under fire, MedEVACing the wounded, and getting to the relative safety of the airport. Poole describes her missions hauling cargo and describes a time she had to fix a hole in the gas tank with a tampon.

Keywords: Ambushes; Baghdad International Airport (Iraq); Jaysh al-Mahdī

Subjects: Mahdi Army attacks

GPS: Baghdad International Airport (Iraq)
Map Coordinates: 33.2669849,44.2311414
01:22:15 - Return Orders; Demobilization and Homecoming

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Segment Synopsis: Poole's deployment orders to Iraq were for 1 year but the exit dates kept changing. At 13 months in-country she finally got exit orders to head back to Camp Atterbury. Poole discusses working closely with troops from North Carolina, Marines, and Hungarians. She describes the different emotions she felt on leaving, her de-mobilization processing, and her homecoming ceremony at Ashland University.

Keywords: Ashland University; Camp Atterbury (Ind.)

Subjects: Coming home; De-mobilization

01:29:45 - Transition to Civilian Life

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Segment Synopsis: Returning home, Poole felt disconnected and she began to push people away, but working with battle buddies from Iraq and her husband helped. She discusses her difficulty adjusting to civilian life, a fear of gas stations, and trying to juggle new roles at home. Poole describes the support network of other Guard members, her husband refusing to let her retreat from life, and how war changed her. In 2008 Poole sought help from the VA but was told her time had passed, that has changed now. She talks about how much family therapy has helped get her back on track.

Keywords: Post-traumatic stress disorder.; Support Networks; Therapy

Subjects: Finding support; Transitioning to civilian life

02:00:45 - Husband's Deployment to Afghanistan

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Segment Synopsis: Poole's husband had been deployed for 5-6 years with the Marine Corps on the seas, but not war deployments (1993-1998; post-Desert Storm). She met husband in 2003 while he worked coaching football and then joined the Ohio Army National Guard as a federal technician. She talks about his deployment in 2012 with the 1486th to Afghanistan, her moved to another unit to to avoid a simultaneous deployment, and his work as a mechanic. She discusses her difficulties on the home side of things, her communications with him, and preparing for his homecoming.

Keywords: Afghanistan; Kandahār (Afghanistan); Ohio. National Guard. Engineer Battalion, 112th; United States. Army. Transportation Company, 1486th

GPS: Kandahār (Afghanistan)
Map Coordinates: 31.0437433,63.894981
02:27:37 - Stateside Deployments and Reflections

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Segment Synopsis: Poole mobilized for Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Gustave. She also helped the CDC drives to deliver vaccinations for H1N1, cleaned up after Hurricane Sandy and delivered water to Toledo with Guardian Neptune. She talks about her deployments stateside, the opportunities in the National Guard, her reflections on her service, and how the Guard has changed.

Subjects: H1N1 influenza.; Hurricane Gustav, 2008; Hurricane Katrina, 2005.; Hurricane Sandy, 2012.; Toledo (Ohio)