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Friday, Feb. 12, 2016

Area National Guard members depart for Iraq

Monday, January 5, 2009

(Photo)
Spc. 4th Class Brandon Withers hugs his parents, Kevin and Tracy Withers, following Friday's ceremony at North Clay Middle School.
Community members gathered in Brazil to say good-bye to some of its heroes on Friday.

"I know I speak for myself and everyone behind me when I say, we appreciate the support," Sgt. 1st Class Neil Brown said during the sendoff ceremony for the 138th Quartermaster Friday.

Brazil Mayor Ann Bradshaw was scheduled to speak however, due to illness she was unable to attend and City Council President Bill Lovett read her speech.

"Our community has always been blessed with the bravest men and women, who without hesitation defend our country during the most difficult of challenges," he said. "Our community is grateful for all of the sacrifices you have made and will continue to make. Our thoughts and prayers will be with all of you."

Boy Scout Troop 101 posted the colors and the Northview High School Band played the National Anthem and gave the troops their own tribute.

"In honor of the deployed soldiers, we chose the theme from Band of Brothers," director Bob Medworth said.

The events continued with 519th CSSB Commander Lt. Col. Kevin Veeder, who spoke to a standing room only crowd.

"As far as departure ceremonies go, this is the best ceremony I have ever seen," he said. "I grew up in this area and unit, and I would like to express sincere appreciation for the unwavering community support for the local armory."

Commander Capt. Laura Pratt also expressed these same sentiments to the families of the soldiers.

"Today we leave patriotic heroes and defenders of freedom," Pratt said to the crowd during her speech. "To our families, you are part of the unit, thank you-for having us, raising us and loving us. We are so humbled, we stand on the shoulders of greatness, for those whose shoulders we stand on, I want to thank you all for your support."

As the tears began to flow again from the audience, 1st Sgt. Neil Stough stood at the podium, wished everyone a happy new year.

"I am proud of this company, the statistics don't measure the heart and soul that these individuals have," he said. "To the families, I can't promise anything, that's life, but I will take care of them."

He continued to ask everyone to pray for guidance, direction and the success of the mission, as well as for the families but most of all to pray for the safety of everyone.

"Don't feel sorry for us, we are living the dream," Stough said. "This is what we know and what we are good at. We are one unit and we are strong."

As soldiers said goodbye to families and friends, they received one last gift and handshake while boarding the buses, members of the Cunot Faith Baptist Church passed out Bibles.

As the men and women in uniform were drove away the words Stough spoke during the ceremony rang true for many in attendance.

"We are ready to go, failure is not an option," he said, "only success."


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God Bless Each & every soldier and their Family... I will be praying for you a11.

-- Posted by luv2bmom2001 on Mon, Jan 5, 2009, at 9:55 AM

God speed my brothers.

-- Posted by VonMises on Mon, Jan 5, 2009, at 10:40 AM

thanks from the bottom of our hearts!

-- Posted by gottokno on Mon, Jan 5, 2009, at 6:28 PM


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