FOB Tacoma

NOTICE: FOB Tacoma has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved FOB Tacoma.
Visit the new section.

Archives: May 2010


Two Green Berets added to local memorial wall

Memorial Day in the South Sound started rainy, but gave way to warm, sunny skies by early afternoon. And the honors will continue Tuesday when the 1st Special Forces Group at Joint Base Lewis-McChord unveils two more names for its memorial wall.

Master Sgt. Mark W. Coleman and Staff Sgt. Rusty H. Christian were both killed in bombings in Afghanistan this year, bringing to 166 the number of names on the wall. Coleman, 40, was from Klickitat County and died last month. Christian, 24, was from Greeneville, Tenn., and died in February.

The News Tribune

Read more »


Submit your South Sound Memorial Day events

Memorial Day is almost upon us, and for many Americans the occasion is much more than a three-day weekend.

If your organization is hosting a Memorial Day observance in the South Puget Sound region anytime between now and Monday, please email me the time, place and other details at
The deadline is noon Friday.

This News Tribune staff photo, by the way, shows Abigail Neilson, 8, who was among the students from Holy Rosary School a year ago placing flags on military veterans’ graves at Old Tacoma Cemetery.


Retired four-star general takes drug fight to Tacoma

When last we heard from Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the retired four-star was raising serious doubts about stability in Iraq and the Bush Administration’s handling of that war.

Today McCaffrey was in Lakewood to speak at an anniversary celebration for a local drug treatment center and to sound the alarm about prescription drug abuse.

The former head of U.S. Southern Command and later President Clinton’s drug czar from 1996 to 2000, McCaffrey is currently an adjunct professor at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He’s also a senior adviser for CRC Health Group, which runs a national web

Read more »


22nd Military Police Battalion soldiers return home from Iraq tonight

About 100 soldiers assigned to the 22nd Military Police Battalion (Criminal Investigation Division) will be welcomed home by friends and families at a ceremony to take place tonight at 11:30 p.m. in the Soldiers Field House on Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

The battalion deployed to Iraq in July 2009, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Soldiers from 12 different installations Army-wide, plus multi-component units from four installations formed the battalion. They all came together on JBLM in June 2009 to integrate and train in preparation for the unit’s year-long deployment.

The Headquarters and Headquarter Detachment, the only active component unit from

Read more »


Homecomings bring more mental health pros to schools

News Tribune education writer Debbie Cafazzo reports:

The Clover Park School District will partner with the military to provide mental health services to families at schools located on Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Representatives of the Lakewood-based school district, Madigan Army Medical Center and others signed an agreement May 5 pledging to deliver services to students and families impacted by soldiers’ deployment and reintegration into family life. Roughly 18,000 soldiers are scheduled to return home from deployments this year.

Each elementary school on the base will have a full-time licensed social worker as part of its school staff. In addition, clinical support

Read more »


Army brass will confront National Guard fairness complaints

A contingent of high-ranking Army officials will speak to the news media at Joint Base Lewis-McChord today to address concerns raised by Oregon politicians that National Guard soldiers have been treated unfairly and disrespectfully compared to active-duty soldiers returning from a war zone.

The 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team from the Oregon National Guard returned this spring from a one-year deployment to Iraq, where they served under the command of Lewis-McChord’s I Corps. Some soldiers complained about their medical processing after coming home, and voiced their concerns to U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader, both Oregon Democrats.

Read more »


“Be safe. Make us proud,” governor tells Washington National Guard troops preparing to deploy to Afghanistan

Colors were cased. Hugs were exchanged. Tears were shed.

Some 70 members of Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 168th Aviation Regiment of the Washington National Guard furled their guidon and prepared for a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan this morning.

They and about 70 soldiers from the Oregon National Guard will fly and maintain CH-47 Chinook helicopters

They’re headed to a yearlong deployment to Afghanistan. They’ll stop at Fort Hood, Texas, first for about two months of training.

Their backgrounds are varied. Many are employed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in civilian roles or work fulltime for the Guard. Others will leave

Read more »


70 area National Guard troops set to leave for training, then deployment to Afghanistan

Some 70 members of a local Washington Army National Guard unit are headed for training at Fort Hood, Texas, in preparation for deployment to Afghanistan.

They are members of B Company, 1st Battalion, 168th Aviation Regiment, headquartered at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, according to a news release.

A departure ceremony is scheduled for them Monday at Lewis-McChord.

The citizen soldiers from Washington will be joined by about 70 members of the Oregon National Guard for their yearlong deployment to Afghanistan, the news release said.

The unit includes pilots, air and ground crew members CH-47 helicopters. They’ll transport troops and supplies

Read more »