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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

More Alabama Guardsmen headed to Iraq

The Alabama Army National Guard’s 2101st Transportation Company out of Demopolis, Aliceville and Butler has been called to active duty for Operation Iraqi Freedom.

A departure ceremony for the unit will be held at Demopolis High School, 701 U.S. Highway 80 West, at 10 a.m. on Jan. 9.

The 2101st, formerly the 440th Ordnance Company, was deployed to the Middle East in the 1990s. The company also deployed to provide transportation support for Operation Iraq freedom during 2004-2005.

The approximately 170 members of the 2101st will head to Fort Dix, N.J. for final training before departing for Iraq.

The unit has been training for its mission over the past months, undergoing extensive training both at home station and at Camp Shelby, Miss. Some unit members - part of Detachment 1 out of Aliceville - were able to put that training to use earlier this year. In July, as they traveled home from training at Camp Shelby, they witnessed a church bus from Louisiana blow a tire and overturn directly in front of the unit bus. The unit bus stopped and 47 members of the 2101st assisted accident victims. Many involved believe their actions saved lives. Gov. Bob Riley later recognized these Soldiers in an awards ceremony at the Capitol.


The general public is invited and encouraged to attend the ceremony to show their support for the 2101st soldiers and their families.

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I grew up in the military. Mom was an Air Force nurse for a few years, dad was a navigator on B-52s, among other things. One grandfather served in World War II, uncle is retired Navy, other grandfather and great-uncle served in Korea and a cousin is currently serving in the Marine Corps. Currently, I'm the military reporter for the Great Falls Tribune in Montana. Previously, 


As a military kids, we moved all over. As an adult, I've traveled all over and moved for work. But now, I'm putting down roots in Montana with my boyfriend. We just bought a house and are slowly but surely making it our home. We have more land that we know what to do with at the moment. Now we're getting a garden started, tearing down walls and having loads of fun at what we call the Homestead.

In a part life, I did PR for the guy who built the Vietnam Veterans Memorial on the National Mall, social media for the National Museum of Health and Medicine, before that, edited two military technology magazines for a publishing group in the DC area and before that, I was the military reporter (among other things) at the Montgomery Advertiser, covering Maxwell Air Force Base, the Alabama National Guard, veterans and anything else military related in the area. And in between all of that, I leave town, preferably the country, whenever possible. It all started when I spent a semester in New Zealand.

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