Army Majors Mark Martin '85 and Larry Howard '87 sent this photo from in front of the presidential palace in Baghdad, where they both work, as the first of four huge busts of Saddam Hussein was finally removed from the rooftop on December 2.
"I've been in Iraq for the past 9 months. Actually, only eight months—the first month was at Fort Bragg and in Kuwait.
"I'm still in the 352nd Civil Affairs Command out of Riverdale, Md. I'm currently working as the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) North Regional Operations Officer here in Baghdad. It gives me an opportunity to travel around the northern part of the country, which is better than sitting in the office. Larry is the CPA Baghdad Regional Operations Officer and is also based in Baghdad. His unit is the 354th Civil Affairs Brigade, also from Riverdale, Md. I met him here, and was surprised to discover that he also graduated from IUP. We wanted to include another civil affairs soldier from my unit in the picture who graduated in 1999, but we just couldn't manage to get all three of us in one spot at same time for the photo, and he recently deployed home. I should finally be redeploying back to the States around early January, and Larry should be getting home around March, but it's kind of hard to tell (I get to go back early since I'm on my second year, and the law won't allow me to stay one day past my second year under these current circumstance; Larry is on his first year).
"Larry lives in Woodbridge, Va., and got to Iraq around the middle of April, like me. I still live in Mechanicsburg, Pa. (when I'm not always deployed—coming up on two years, now)."