By Mark Patton
Stars and Stripes
Published: September 24, 2011
WIESBADEN, Germany --- “Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-... That’s all, folks.”
On Friday night, the stuttering Porky Pig spoke the last words broadcast on American Forces Network Iraq.
Since World War II, voices of AFN disc jockeys have been heard over the airwaves by deployed troops, a sure sign of a sustained American presence.
The same held true for Iraq, where AFN started broadcasting from Baghdad in December 2003.
“Freedom,” a song written and recorded by Paul McCartney in response to the 9/11 terror attacks, was the first song played on AFN Iraq. “Freedom Radio” became the moniker of the station’s programming.
Friday marked the latest footnote in AFN’s wartime history, as Toby Keith’s “Courtesy of The Red White and Blue” became the final song to be broadcast from AFN Iraq’s studio.
While the song played, the AFN Iraq crew, made up primarily of Reserve soldiers from the Texas-based 206th Broadcast Operation Detachment, huddled like a football team, relishing what AFN Iraq DJ Sgt. Adam Prickel described as an emotional and historic moment.
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