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Local soldier wounded in Iraq

May 18, 2003|by GREGORY T. SIMMONS

gregs@herald-mail.com

A U.S. Army specialist from Boonsboro was wounded in an attack on her convoy Friday in Iraq, her parents said Saturday.

They said her wounds were not life-threatening.

Mary Burral, 24, of 215 Carroll Court is with the 54th Engineering Battalion. She received shrapnel wounds to her arms and legs, her mother, Nancy Burral, said.

Mary Burral is a 1996 graduate of Boonsboro High School.

Nancy Burral said she spoke to her daughter by phone last week, the first contact they'd had in two months.

"Everything was looking great," she said.

The attack on Mary Burral's convoy occurred about 3:15 p.m. Friday Iraqi time, her mother said. An Army official contacted the family's home Saturday morning.

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"I don't even know how extensive her injuries are at this point. I know they're not life-threatening. ... I really don't have a lot of information," Nancy Burral said.

"All I know is she was driving in her truck," Nancy Burral said.

She said the official she spoke with said, "'I can't give you a whole lot of details because the whole situation is under investigation.'"

"We were watching the news, and this wasn't even on the news," Nancy Burral said. "I guess there's still things over there we're not aware of."

Nancy Burral said her home had been busy since she received the call Saturday morning. Her sister and her children visited, and her husband left to give his mother the news.

Nancy Burral said she felt hopeful about her daughter's condition, even though she had scant information. She said she had sent an e-mail to everyone she knew asking them to pray for her daughter.

"She's going to be OK," she said. "We know she's going to be OK. There's not really a whole lot we can do ... and, hopefully, eventually (we'll) be able to talk to her."

Mary Burral's father, George Burral Jr., expressed relief about his daughter's condition, which he said "could have been a lot worse.

"At least no one knocked on our door. At least that's the good side of it," he said.

He said the Army official did not specify where his daughter would be treated, although it could somewhere in Spain or Germany. He said the official said he could assume more serious injuries if a doctor called instead of his daughter.

"The best hope is that she's the one that contacts us," George Burral said.

Mary Burral graduated in 1996 from Boonsboro High School and decided in January 2001 to join the Army. When she was assigned to work in Germany a few weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, her mother began sending care packages to her battalion.

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