The shootings yesterday took place at the SRP or Soldier Readiness Processing Center. This is where soldiers who are deploying go to take care of business in different stations. For instance, there's a legal station to take care of your will. A medical station to make sure your shots and health records are up to date. I know that soldiers also go through the SRP after a deployment but I don't know what they do. Ben is readying for a deployment. He was there all last week and this past Monday.
The commentary on the news was just too inane at times. Really, MSNBC? Salon.com and Rolling Stones magazine for analysis? And, by mentioning that one of the guns is a semi-automatic? A semi-automatic is just a regular handgun that you don't have to cock the hammer on each time you take a shot. It's not what most people might picture when you hear the word "automatic" when talking about guns.
My mother-in-law and sister-in-law were visiting for Ben's promotion ceremony. He didn't get to spend hardly any time with them. He got locked down and didn't make it home until 10 last night. They left this morning. My children loved having Auntie to themselves since she traveled without her children.
We went out to dinner after waiting around for my husband to come home. It was eerie. On a Thursday night at 6:30, we would've normally waited for a table especially as we were a party of 7. However, there were rows of empty parking spaces and lots of space in the restaurant. We were seated right away. To put it into perspective, a whole soccer team came to have dinner and were seated almost immediately. I'm sure all the businesses (especially the restaurants) learned how dependent they are on the soldiers in this community.
Ben is just devastated by what has happened.
I'm troubled by how long it took them to close down Fort Hood. Don't get me wrong. I'm happy we were able to get away. But, why did it take so long? The incident happened around 1:30. We left at 2pm to take the coffee urn back to the club. They didn't start the procedure to shut down until after that. Also, how can you stay away from windows and take shelter when places weren't letting you in the buildings? I have a friend who had to take shelter in her car with her children because the buildings she was outside when the sirens went off wouldn't let her in. Just how safe were we sitting in our cars? I cannot even stress just how close we were to getting stuck.
I have learned what an awesome community I am a part of; IRL and in cyberspace. I thank everyone for their concern and prayers. It was a truly rough day. And, I will do what our priest suggested. I will say a Hail Mary for each person killed and for each person injured. Even the shooter as much as I'd rather not (sorry, I have to be honest).
Photo credit: Photography by Cho aka my brother