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Archives: May 2007

May
23rd

National Guard deployments

The Washington Guard announced Wednesday another one of its units is on its way to Iraq. The 1st Battalion, 168th Aviation Regiment will have a departure ceremony 11 a.m. Friday at Fort Lewis. They’re about 200 soldiers in all from Washington and Idaho, who will be mobilized for 13 months, with 8-10 months overseas.


The guard announced last week that 50 military police officers from its 506th Military Police Detachment from Camp Murray will soon head to Iraq to perform law and order missions at U.S. bases there.


The Washington National Guard and Army Reserve units from Washington

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May
23rd

A new job for Troy

Brig. Gen. William Troy, the acting commanding general at Fort Lewis, is getting a new assignment, the Army announced Wednesday.


Troy, 54, is moving from Lewis to become the “vice director for force structure, resources and assessment, J-8, The Joint Staff” at the Pentagon. No timeline was announced.


In the same release, the Army named Brig. Gen. Donald M. Campbell, Jr., to succeed Troy. Campbell, a tanker, spent a few years at Fort Lewis in the mid-1990s, his assignments including command of the old 1st Battalion, 33rd Armor Regiment. He is deputy commanding general at V

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May
23rd

Strykers and the surge

Just going back over the Defense Department release about the next rotation of forces into Iraq, in light of these “second surge” stories lately.


The rotation plan will have three full brigades of Strykers operating in Iraq together for the better part of nine months – from this December through August 2008:


&bull Fort Lewis’ 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division is there now and will be into August 2008.


&bull The 2nd Cavalry Regiment from Germany – nee the 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division Lancers from Fort Lewis – will go this August to take over for their

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May
23rd

Fort Lewis MP rides for breast cancer

The Olympian has a short note about Staff Sgt. Richard Young, a soldier from the 42nd Military Police Brigade, who is going to ride 400 miles on his bicycle to raise money and awareness for breast cancer research. He’s going to ride June 6-8 from Fort Lewis to Naches and back.


There’s more information about Young’s ride on the National Breast Cancer Coalition web site. To sponsor Young, click here.

May
22nd

Tacoma native to head SOCOM

(Originally posted May 10)



olson.jpg

Olson

Navy Vice Adm. Eric T. Olson, a Tacoma native and Stadium High School grad, was nominated Thursday for a fourth star and the top spot at the U.S. Special Operations Command. The Pentagon announcement is here.


Olson, 55, grew up on North Yakima Avenue and is the son of Dawn Lucien, a former Tacoma City Councilwoman and long active in local politics and civic life. Olson graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and

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May
22nd

Vicky Mohler’s shopping list

Many of you know about Vicky Mohler, a Marine Corps mom from Puyallup who has been sending tons of care packages to soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen for the past few years. She’s got a herd of volunteers helping her through the group Support America’s Armed Forces.


They’re having another collection and packing party from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the South Hill Top Foods.


She hears from a lot of service members, and this is what they say they need:


&bull Dart boards with extra darts

&bull Hand held games

&bull

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May
22nd

Explosive force

The Guardian of London had a photographer embedded with a Stryker squad Saturday that was first on the scene of the devastating IED strike on a Bradley fighting vehicle. He filed this report. The blast killed the six Fort Hood soldiers and one interpreter on board.


The incident is similar to the May 6 explosion in Baqouba that claimed the lives of six soldiers from the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, and a Russian photojournalist riding with them.


And the photos explain in a way that no words can the destructive force of the bombs

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May
22nd

Kathryn Vernon update

It’s been a couple months since we last heard from Kathryn Vernon, a Tacoma woman working in Baghdad to help restore Iraq’s aviation sector. She writes Tuesday about her recent trip home to visit her family, and a tragedy endured by her friend and coworker in Iraq.

Sometimes it takes time and distance to put life – life in Iraq, that is –
into perspective. Much has happened since I wrote of Ms. Iman – much of it
mundane, just the detritus of life that happens in an everyday existence – I
know, I know – some would say that life in Iraq is not an everyday existence
– and for us Americans, that would be correct – but for the Iraqis, it is
everyday, day after day, of rebuilding in the wake of destruction. As I
head back to the Zone, leaving my wonderful family and going to my work
family in Baghdad, I realize that the people there have become a part of me
– Ms. Iman and Mr. Hamoudi – Brian and Jeanne – Dick and Erin and Fleur –
Mr. Muhammed, Mr. Serwan, Bob (our translator) – all of the people who have
touched me in some way or another – whether American, British, Iraqi, or
Kiwi – they are all in this with me and are trying their darndest to bring a
once-beautiful country back to some semblance of order and loveliness.

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