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U.S. Officially Ends War In Iraq

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U.S. Army soldiers from the 2-82 Field Artillery, 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, carry their bags to waiting trucks as they prepare to board buses later in the evening to fly home to Fort Hood, Texas after being one of the last American combat units to exit from Iraq on December 15, 2011 at Camp Virginia, near Kuwait City, Kuwait.(credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

U.S. Army soldiers from the 2-82 Field Artillery, 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, carry their bags to waiting trucks as they prepare to board buses later in the evening to fly home to Fort Hood, Texas after being one of the last American combat units to exit from Iraq on December 15, 2011 at Camp Virginia, near Kuwait City, Kuwait.(credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (WWJ) – The war in Iraq is over. A ceremony Thursday morning in Baghdad officially ended the U.S. military mission in Iraq. Close to 4,500 service members died there.  An additional 3,200  were wounded.

WWJ Newsradio 950 spoke with Skip Bushart of Waterford who lost his 22-year-old son, Damian, in Iraq when the war had just begun in 2003.

“If I look at the circumstances, you know, I wish there would have been a different outcome,” Bushart  said. “But our family has a very long tradition of being members of the military and supporting this country. And I’m proud that he elected, of his own free will, to do that.”

“I’m glad that it’s over. I’m glad that we’re brining the troops home. I’m actually proud that my son was part of that, getting rid of a dictator like that, and helping to establish a free and democratic nation,” he said.

U.S. Senator Carl Levin of Michigan says ending the war now is the right thing to do.

“President Bush set a date and that date is important to be critically maintained,” said Levin. “That date has been in place, again, for many, many years. It’s given notice to the Iraqis they’ve gotta get their own act together and they are militarily. Their army is very, very strong.”

Levin said he is feeling confident about that country’s future.

“There’s gonna be acts of violence — that’s gonna happen. The question, though, is whether or not there’s any threat of a collapse in Iraq and there is none,” he said.

Over the coming days, the final few thousand U.S. troops will leave Iraq.

- More on this story from CBS News –

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