Now, here is a true WARRIOR, a rare breed!!!! Chicago Tribune By Imran Vittachi Tribune staff reporter Published January 26, 2004 Sgt. Roy A. Wood wanted to be on the front lines. The Green Beret reservist wanted so badly to serve as a medic on clandestine missions in Afghanistan to hunt down Al-Qaeda operatives that he got himself demoted and took a pay cut. Army Special Forces, which often operate behind enemy lines, have a strict policy of prohibiting senior officers from going into the field as members of A-teams: small, flexible and highly mobile units made up of no more than a dozen of the elite soldiers. The commandos assigned to these teams are usually young. Wood was 46 when his commanders granted his wish to go to Afghanistan, dropping him in rank from major to sergeant. But the Florida National Guardsman, who worked as an emergency-room doctor in civilian life, first had to qualify as a medic with the elite corps. He had to pass an endurance course for A-team medics that physically wipes out most soldiers half his age. "They had said that he could never do it, but he did it," said Brightman Logan, Wood's closest friend since their college days at Mercer University in Macon, Ga. Wood, 47, of Alva, Fla., was killed Jan. 9 in Kabul, Afghanistan, when his vehicle crashed into a truck that had stalled in the road. Wood was assigned to Company C, 3rd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Army National Guard, based in Starke, Fla. Wood honed his survival skills as a medical student on the Caribbean isle of Grenada. As he recorded in a journal, Wood landed in Grenada with little money. To save on costs, Wood claimed a patch of beachfront and built a tent, where he slept during his two years in Grenada, Logan said. Logan said he last saw Wood at Christmas. Wood came back to Florida for a week to visit his wife, their two children and his ailing father. Because most of his military missions were secret, the Green Beret couldn't tell his friend much about his experiences in Afghanistan. But Wood told Logan about how he had helped establish two medical clinics for Afghan women with the help of missionaries. "That was Roy for you--just a remarkable person," Logan said.