Lieutenant-Colonel David Wando of the Kenya Defence Forces who was at the war front in Somalia gives a story on how the Armoured Personnel Carrier he was in got ambushed and escaped death by a whisker.
KDF soldier recalls waking up in hospital demanding for his weapon [Video]
Lt Colonel David Wando woke up in the hospital thinking he was still in the field
The soldier passed out while receiving treatment and woke up in hospital demanding his artillery, unaware that he was been in the ICU for a few days.
In an interview with KBC, Wando said on this particular day, his team was to meet another military team in Somalia when an improvised explosive device went off on their convoy.
He described that the explosion was so intense that he could feel their heavy APC vehicle in the air due to the impact.
“The next thing I knew is I could feel the vehicle had been lifted, and this was an armoured personnel carrier which weighs several tons. It had been lifted off the ground and was slumped back onto the ground and the cabin was filled with soot and sand and you could barely see anything,” he recalled.
The soldiers who were in the APC immediately disembarked to repel the attackers but after overpowering them, they realised their commander was still in the vehicle and was injured therefore losing copious amounts of blood.
His leg was injured by the explosion causing his blood to spray all over the personnel carrier. He was loaded onto another APC and set on a journey back to camp for emergency treatment.
Fearing that he might not make it back alive Wando asked one of his fellow soldiers not to break the news of his death to his parents but his sister instead.
“I know my sister is the stronger one in the family and this is my younger sister. So I told him I want you to break this news to my sister and then she will know how to tell it to my parents,” he recalled.
Thankfully they made it back to camp and a helicopter was ready to take him to El Wak where he would be loaded onto another aircraft to Wilson before being taken to Defence Memorial Hospital.
By this time, he had already been given drugs that knocked him out and only regained consciousness a few moments in between the two flights.
The next time Wando woke up was at Defence Memorial Hospital which turned into a dramatic scene after he experienced post-traumatic stress disorder.
His mind still thought he was at the war front where he had come from and immediately went into combat mode demanding his guns.
“I remember looking at the doctors wearing their white lab coats and we are in the open and I am wondering why aren't these people using a covert approach? Why are these people not in camouflage? I sat up on the stretcher and asked for my weapon because now my head is telling me I need something to protect us with.
“So I turned to the nurse who was pushing my stretcher. I asked him uh where's my weapon and he said something about my weapon being in the armoury and what not and I remember thinking this man is not serious.
“I asked him where is my weapon? I want it now!...They had to stop the entire process and someone came and explained to me that now I’m in a safe area, that this is a military camp, it is guarded and that I did not need my weapon. The next I woke up I was told I had been on ICU for a whole week,” he narrated.
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