Pasco soldier home from Iraq - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Pasco soldier home from Iraq

PASCO, Wash. - While fighting America's war on terror, his vehicle was hit by a bomb, one of his soldiers killed and others injured but a soldier from Pasco believes in what the troops are doing.

From a land where violence is an everyday concern to a calm neighborhood in Pasco, Mario Tovar has returned for an unexpected visit.

He was riding with his soldiers near camp Taji, which is north of Baghdad, when a bomb underneath his vehicle exploded.

Tovar said, "My driver was killed, my gunner, myself, and my interpreter were injured."

The explosion broke a bone in his calf and cut his face.  He walks with a cane, but is expected to completely recover.

But despite the death and destruction he feels that much of the positive is being overshadowed.  Tovar said, "It is a slap in the face to be helping people and then turn around and be targeted because of it, but you can't lump everyone into one category...  There's a lot of things being built, a lot of communities improving."

Tovar said death is extremely sad, but said it is part of war.  He said, "It's not just the bad guys that die.  It's the good guys too."

When asked about the future of Iraq Tovar said he is a soldier not a politician.  He believes taking the troops out of Iraq before the Iraqi people are able to stand on their own would be a terrible mistake.

Tovar said, "For me personally I lost too many friends over there for it to be for nothing."