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Archives: Feb. 2008

Feb.
29th

C-17 simulators at McChord





Photo: Russ Carmack/The News Tribune


When my colleague Russ Carmack brought his images back from this morning’s “ride” in Sim No. 11 out at McChord, one of the other photographers commented as to how we must’ve been out there early, given the dawn’s early light out the cockpit window.


For us news types an 8 a.m. showup still counts as oh-dark-thirty. But that’s not why the light looked that way.


The virtual reality world they

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Feb.
29th

Why the Navy?

With the Army and the Air Force keeping us busy most days, we don’t get out to cover much about the Navy – even though the wider Puget Sound area is home to one of the world’s larger concentrations of seapower.


So as a casual follower of things Navy, this seemed interesting. Proceedings, the magazine of the U.S. Naval Institute, asked senior naval officers around the world to answer this question: “How do you explain to your government and fellow citizens why your navy is necessary and worth what it costs?”


Their answers, from Angola to Uruguay,

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Feb.
28th

Noise alert

Fort Lewis wants the public to know that soldiers are going to be doing some more loud shooting at night.


March 5-16, from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., they’ll be firing 81 mm mortars and demolitions.


March 8-9, day and night, they’ll be using bangalore torpedos. What’s a bangalore torpedo, you ask? Surely you’ll recall their use in the riveting opening scenes of “Saving Pvt. Ryan,” when beleagured Joes use them to blast their way up and off of Omaha Beach. But they have other uses:



March 8-9, day and

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Feb.
28th

Washington Guardsman strikes it rich

Sgt. Wayne Leyde of Mount Spokane hit a Washington lottery scratch ticket for a cool $1 million.


As he’s got two active-duty tours of Iraq under his belt and a third likely pending with his new unit, the 81st Brigade Combat Team, Leyde’s luck got the attention of Good Morning America, who had him on by phone today.


The 26-year-old, who lives with his folks, says he’s going to take his time and think about what to do with the dough. But he also says he fully expects to honor his commitment to the Guard.

Feb.
27th

Muddy bike race at Fort Lewis

They’re going to have the second annual “Army Extreme Mountain Bike Race” March 29 at Fort Lewis. All comers invited. It’s a good way to get filthy muddy, cold and exhausted, with the very distinct possibility of flying head first over the handlebars. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.


The post says:


Competition will include men’s and women’s divisions in three skill categories: recreational, for the first-time rider; beginner, for the entry-level rider; and sport, for advanced riders. The race is open to the public. The registration fee for civilian competitors is $20 (discounts are available for

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Feb.
26th

Memorial ceremony at Fort Lewis

A memorial ceremony is scheduled for 11 a.m. Wednesday, March 5, at the post’s Evergreen Chapel for two 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division soldiers killed in Iraq.


Spc. Chad Groepper and Spc. Luke Runyan of the 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment died Feb. 17 when they were attacked with small-arms fire in Diyala Province.


Persons who wish to attend who do not have Department of Defense identification or decals on their vehicle can enter the post through the main gate. At the visitor center, present a driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance to get a

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Feb.
26th

3rd Brigade’s last casualty

Stories are online and in the paper today about the heartbreaking end to Spc. Kevin Mowl’s nearly seven-month struggle to recover from the wounds he suffered in an Aug. 2 IED blast in Baghdad.


His family keeps a journal at the CaringBridge.com site. There are also stories in his hometown Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.


Mowl’s death is also sad reminder of two very bad days for the 2nd Battalion, 3rd Infantry Regiment.


Mowl was wounded in the explosion that killed three other 2-3 soldiers: Staff Sgt. Fernando Santos, Spc. Cristian Rojas-Gallego and

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