Eastern Kentucky Soldier Injured In Iraq

By: Danielle Morgan Email
By: Danielle Morgan Email

A purple heart is awarded to a U.S. Army soldier from Eastern Kentucky.

Pikeville native Trent Gray was seriously injured earlier this week in an insurgent attack in Iraq 30 miles north of Baghdad. His wife says it changed her feelings about the war.

It was broad daylight in Tarmiyah, Iraq when an American guarded outpost was attacked by insurgents. A suicide bomber then drove into the building, causing an explosion. Two U.S. Army men died, 17 were injured. 45 minutes later, a phone call came to Kentucky. It was one of the survivors, E-3 Trent Gray calling to tell his wife Rayshell in Pikeville what had happened.

"He has a broke nose, broke shoulder, broke ribs, there's no skin on his elbow and his ear, its like a chunk was blown out of it and a chunk out of his side," Rayshell said.

Rayshell says the horrifying details have changed not only her view of the war, but her husbands as well.

"It makes you think about it a lot more, how dangerous it is. I just assumed it would never happen to Trent. He's afraid of going back. He just wants to come home," she said.

Trent was just home in January, but after the attack and finding out the Gray's are now one month pregnant, Rayshell wants him to come home. Instead after evaluations, he's back in Iraq preparing to go to go back the infantry.

"Your sons and daughters are performing magnificently," said Adj. Gen. Donald Storm with the Kentucky National Guard.

It's for military families like the Gray's, that Storm is rallying support for House Bill 520 to give military families a income tax break.

"It's the least we could do. A clean sweep across the board," Storm said.

Meanwhile Rayshell says she has to drive three hours away just to get a referral to get medical coverage for their unborn child as Trent recovers in Iraq with a purple heart.

Gray is not scheduled to come home until after October of this year.

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