Lt Andrew Nuttall
Dec 24, 2009
Lieutenant Nuttall was serving as 12 PlatoonCommander in D Company of the Task Force 3-09 Battle Group. He was killed by an Improvised Explosive Device on 23 December 2009.
soldiers die. this is part of the job description. even for bright, smiling, welcoming, friendly young officers, who had a smile even for a poet (a poet? what the fuck is a poet doing out here?) who wanted to hitch a ride in a LAV or ask too many questions, or just sit around seemingly doing nothing.
my immediate image of Lt. Nuttall is of him at Wainwright in May, focused, really professional, smiling, energy. was it of him in the nightly CUB? the PSS outside Spin? where? so many thousands of images in my 18 months with these guys. I think I last saw him when I slapped some spuds on his plate out at the front. I say I think, because one night 200 hungry, dirty, exhausted soldiers showed up for dinner (we expected far fewer), and we scrambled for food. officers eat last. I greeted every one of them with a “how’s it going”. they move quick. little time for anything more than a greeting. still, you learn a lot about how things are going by being on the other side of the food lineup. it’s in their eyes. and that night, something was tough. in the early morning they were off again.
last night I wrote my contact after hearing the news. devastated. all last year as I watched the battallion, then the battle group, then task force prepare, I looked around me, silently asked the question, “will it be you? or you? or you?”
my contact replied early this morning that soldiers understand the danger, grieve in private, carry on, but that the Regiment, the big family, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, never forgets.
it’s so hard for those who have never travelled the road to war to understand what this means to lose one’s comrade. Lt. Nuttall was not my comrade, I am not a soldier, I am the mere watcher, but what I can tell you is that though they might carry on, continue putting one foot in front of another, soldiers suffer.Lt. Nuttall, you will not be forgotten, thank you for everything