Then-LSA sophomore Adrian Mejia spent the final weeks of December 2003 like most other students: preparing for exams. A few days before Christmas, he took his last test. He packed up his dorm room in West Quad and left Ann Arbor.
The similarities between Mejia and most students end there.
Mejia did not go home for Christmas he went to Iraq.
Mejia is one of many University students, professors and alums involved in the war.
He had been in the University’s Reserve Officer Training Corps program, and decided to enlist in the Army before graduating.
After his deployment in 2003, he was stationed at Abu Ghraib, the prison where numerous Iraqi detainees were abused and humiliated by American forces in 2004.
“After all the scandal broke out, it was very surreal to be on the front lines of all that happened because of it,” he said in an e-mail interview from Iraq.
Now Mejia is on his second tour of duty as a military police officer. He spends most of his days training Iraqi police. Other days are spent on patrol and enforcing curfew at night. He still finds times to send e-mails from an Internet caf