Afghanistan Firefight Heard On Voice Mail

Discussion in 'Modern' started by syscom3, May 6, 2008.

  1. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Jun 4, 2005
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    Orange County, CA


    OTIS, Ore. -- An Oregon couple received a frightening phone call from their son in Afghanistan when he inadvertently called home during battle.

    Stephen Phillips and other soldiers in his Army MP company were battling insurgents when his phone was pressed against his Humvee. It redialed and called his parents in the small Oregon town of Otis.

    Sandie Petee, Phillips' mother, and her husband, Jeff Petee, weren't home at the time of the call. They returned home to find a three-minute voice mail on their answering machine.

    "His friend died a year ago in Iraq and I'm thinking, 'Oh my God, this may be the last time I hear my son's voice on the phone,'" Petee said.

    They heard shooting, swearing and shouted pleas for more ammunition on the phone call from their son.

    "They were pinned down and apparently his barrel was overheating," said Jeff Petee. "It's something a parent really doesn't want to hear. It's a heck of a message to get from your son in Afghanistan."

    The three-minute call ended abruptly.

    "You could hear him saying stuff like, he needs more ammo, or he needs another barrel," said John Petee, Phillips' brother. "At the end, you could hear a guy saying 'Incoming! RPG!' And then it cut off."

    As soon as the voice mail stopped playing, the Petees began trying to reach their son in Afghanistan. The family figured out Petee had tried to call home earlier that day, but he didn't leave a message and the phone later redialed during battle.

    They eventually reached their son.

    "I finally got a hold of him," Sandie Petee said. "He was embarrassed, he said, 'Don't let Grandma hear it.'"

    Stephen Phillips is scheduled to return home next month, when his tour is complete, his mother said.

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