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Archives: Sep. 2007

Sep.
18th

Stryker homecomings continue

Another big batch of 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division Stryker soldiers — 620 or so — are due home this afternoon. They include the brigade commander, Col. Stephen Townsend, and the command sergeant major, Sgt. Maj. Jeffrey Du.


With today’s arrivals that’ll be about 60 percent of the brigade’s 3,800 soldiers back home to Lewis.


Good stuff.

Sep.
18th

Memorial ceremony Wednesday

Fort Lewis will hold another memorial ceremony at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Evergreen Chapel for two soldiers from the 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division.


Sgt. 1st Class Daniel E. Scheibner, 40, and Sgt. 1st Class David A. Cooper, Jr., 36, were killed in Iraq. Scheibner died Aug. 29 in a bombing. Cooper died Sept. 5 in Baghdad from a non-combat related injury.


Members of the public who don’t have Department of Defense identification can get on the post by going to the visitor center at Exit 120 off of Interstate 5. Those wishing a temporary pass

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Sep.
13th

More troops coming home

It’s not just the Strykers from the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division who are on their way back from the war.


The 24th Quartermaster Company out of Fort Lewis is returning after a year in Iraq; about 60 soldiers were due home Thursday night with another 30 coming in the next few days. This was their second Iraq deployment.


And Sunday night, the Army Reserve’s Task Force Pathfinder, led by the 321st Engineer Battalion, is set to come home after a year spent hunting IEDs and doing other combat engineer work in the notorious Anbar Province. The battalion

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Sep.
13th

I-5 exit closed at North Fort

The freeway ramp to North Fort Lewis will be closed for two months beginning Sunday morning while contractors build a new gate to North Fort, the state Department of Transportation says.


The ramps to the main gate and visitor center at Exit 120 will still be open.


Motorists bound for North Fort should take Exit 119 and follow the detour signs, the department says.


The department advises motorists who don’t need to get off at Exit 120 to keep left to avoid backups at the ramp.

Sep.
11th

Welcome home



Sgt. Ryan Badeaux of Dallas gets a big hug from his kid sister, Kaari Patten, age 6, at Monday night’s homecoming of the 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment at Fort Lewis.

Photo: John Froschauer/The Associated Press

We ran this picture on the back of our front page section today but I wanted to post it here for those of you who don’t get the print edition. For whatever reason, we typically don’t post captions-only photos on our web site.


To

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Sep.
10th

USO care package party in Tacoma

The USO’s Operation Care Package will get a boost Wednesday in Tacoma when the Waddell & Reed “big rig” promoting the campaign will park 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. near the Tacoma Mall.


The financial advice firm is sending the 18-wheeler on a 70-city tour around the country to mark the company’s 70th anniversary. The truck will be parked in the International Jeweler’s parking lot just north of the mall on Steele Street.


There’ll be games and hot dogs, prize raffles and other activities. Donations will help pay for the USO care packages distributed to service members on

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Sep.
7th

Petraeus’ letter to the troops

Looks like it will be all Petraeus, all the time over the next several days. Here’s the full text of the letter he put out Friday to his command — including about 10,000 soldiers from Fort Lewis.

7 September 2007

Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, and Civilians of Multi-National Force-Iraq:

We are now over two-and-a-half months into the surge of offensive operations made possible by the surge of forces, and I want to share with you my view of how I think we’re doing. This letter is a bit longer than previous ones, since I feel you deserve a detailed description of what I believe we have — and have not — accomplished, as Ambassador Crocker and I finalize the assessment we will provide shortly to Congress.

Up front, my sense is that we have achieved tactical momentum and wrested the initiative from our enemies in a number of areas of Iraq. The result has been progress in the security arena, although it has, as you know, been uneven. Additionally, as you all appreciate very well, innumerable tasks remain and much hard work lies ahead. We are, in short, a long way from the goal line, but we do have the ball and we are driving down the field.

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Sep.
7th

New command sergeant major at I Corps

Fort Lewis will install its new top enlisted soldier in a ceremony Monday. Command Sgt. Maj. Frank A. Grippe will assume responsibility from Sgt. Maj. Gerald Williams, who’s been serving as interim CSM after Command Sgt. Maj. Tommy Williams left for Iraq with Lt. Gen. Jim Dubik.


Grippe comes to Lewis from Fort Campbell, Ky., where he was the post and 101st Airborne Division command sergeant major.


His bio is at the Fort Campbell web site, but some highlights here: Bronze Star for valor three times, Purple Heart, and squad leader, platoon sergeant and 1st sergeant in

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