Northwest Military Blogs: Army West Blog

Posts made in: September, 2009 (71) Currently Viewing: 1 - 10 of 71

September 1, 2009 at 9:08am

Morning Report

Filed under: Morning Report, News To Us, Sports,

September 1, 2009 at 11:15am

Iraq brief

MICHAEL SWAN: TIME FOR AN UPDATE >>>

Col. Joseph Martin, commander of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, speaks via satellite with reporters at the Pentagon.

Filed under: Iraq, News To Us,

September 1, 2009 at 3:05pm

NCO steps up after 9/11

J.M. SIMPSON: MEET SGT. DANIEL FORTUNE >>>

NCO-300-9-3 "9/11."

That was Sgt. Daniel Fortune's simple and direct answer when asked why he joined the Army.

"I saw what happened to our country that day, and I wanted to do my part to bring America back," added the California native.

Enlisting in the Army after graduating from high school, Fortune serves as an artilleryman. He has deployed to Iraq twice - in 2003 and 2005.

He is a squad leader in A Company, Warrior Transition Battalion (WTB), and he is considering making the Army a career.

A dynamic noncommissioned officer, Fortune works with wounded warriors at the WTB by leading through example.

"It's all about integrity, about saying what you mean and doing what you say," said Fortune.  "Soldiers want their NCOs to lead by example. They want to see how you operate - that you make things happen and you are not just talk."

Talk is a quality that does not define Fortune's character.  Most of his answers are direct and to the point.

Self-service, on the other hand, does characterize his attitude.

"I think self-service is the most important of the Army's seven values," said Fortune. "To be in this line of service you have to be able to step outside of yourself for the welfare of those who serve with and for the country."

This is a message that he would like to see others follow by enlisting or reenlisting.

"Now is a good time to enlist," said Fortune.  "Despite what one sees and hears on television, we need people to serve the country and for the right reasons."

And as far as this NCO is concerned, that service is rooted in stepping up and taking the challenge of joining the Army.

"Go ahead and take the chance; it is good to serve."

Filed under: Fort Lewis, J.M. Simpson, NCO,

September 2, 2009 at 8:15am

Morning Report

September 2, 2009 at 11:46am

Roadside bomb kills Lewis soldiers

MICHAEL SWAN: TWO MORE FORT LEWIS SOLDIERS DIE IN AFGHANISTAN >>>

The Department of Defense announced today the death of Spc. Jonathan D. Welch, 19, of Yorba Linda, Calif., and Pfc. Jordan M. Brochu, 20, of Cumberland, Maine, both who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. They died Aug. 31 in Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device.  The soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Lewis, Wash.

The Fort Lewis PAO released a statement regarding the death of the two Fort Lewis soldiers:

FORT LEWIS, Wash. - According to the Dept. of Defense, Spc. Jonathan D. Welch, 19, of Yorba Linda, Calif., and Pfc. Jordan M. Brochu, 20, of Cumberland, Maine, died Aug. 31 in Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device.  The soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Lewis, Wash. The unit deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in July, 2009.

According to unit records, Welch enlisted March 30, 2007 at Los Angeles, Calif. He reported to Fort Benning, Ga. for initial entry training on May 31, 2007. Upon graduation, he reported Fort Lewis, Wa. on Oct. 3, 2007, where he was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment of the 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. This was his first deployment.

Welch's civilian and military education includes a High School diploma (2007), and the Military Occupational Specialty 11B: Infantryman qualification course (2007).

His awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal, and Army Service Ribbon According to unit records, Brochu enlisted Aug. 19, 2008 at Portland, Maine. He reported to Fort Benning, Ga. for initial entry training on Sept. 5, 2009. Upon graduation, he reported Fort Lewis, Wa. on January 5, 2009, where he was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment of the 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. This was his first deployment.

Brochu's military education includes the Military Occupational Specialty 11B: Infantryman qualification course (2008). Information about his civilian education was not annotated in his unit records.

His awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal.

On behalf of the entire Fort Lewis military and civilian community, we extend our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Spc. Welch and Pfc. Brochu.

September 2, 2009 at 4:59pm

555th Engineers arrive home tomorrow

MICHAEL SWAN: ABOUT 150 SOLDIERS RETURN FROM IRAQ >>>

The Fort Lewis PAO sent out this reminder:

Fort Lewis, Wash. - About 150 Soldiers of the 555th Engineer Brigade headquarters will return home to Fort Lewis from a 12-month deployment to Iraq Thursday, September 3. The Soldiers will be reunited with families and friends at a "Welcome Home" ceremony scheduled for 6:00 p.m. at Wilson Gym on North Fort Lewis.

The 555th Engineer Brigade headquarters deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in September 2008, where it was headquartered at Joint Base Balad, supporting Multi-National Corps Iraq. The brigade's mission has been to support combat operations, construction, and geospatial operations in partnership with Provincial Reconstruction Teams and Iraqi Army engineers. Other missions included training Iraqi Army engineers, base closure support, munitions clearance, and route clearance patrols.

This concludes the brigade headquarters' third deployment to Iraq.

The unit first deployed in April 2003 through March 2004, and established its Headquarters at Forward Operating Base Speicher, in Tikrit, Iraq. There, the "Triple Nickel" served as the headquarters of the Task Force Able, which was comprised of more than 3,000 engineers from the Regular Army, Army Reserve, and Army National Guard. Their mission was to assure mobility, force protection, and essential life support to all brigades in their task force area of operation.

The brigade's second deployment was to North Central Iraq October 2005 through October 2006. There, the unit provided mobility, troop construction, training to Iraqi Army engineers, base support, and munitions clearance to their task force throughout all five provinces of Northern Iraq.

Filed under: Engineers, Fort Lewis, Iraq,

September 2, 2009 at 5:13pm

Remembering fallen heroes

J.M. SIMPSON: MEMORIAL SERVICE TODAY FOR FORT LEWIS SOLDIERS >>>

Today-In-Memory The Fort Lewis community came together at North Fort Chapel this afternoon to remember two heroes.

Sgt. Troy Tom and Pfc Jonathan Yanney were eulogized in a memorial service attended by hundreds of soldiers and friends.

Both soldiers were assigned to 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division.

Tom and Yanney died August 18th of wounds sustained when their vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device (IED) in Arghandab, Afghanistan.

"The pain of losing two of our own never leaves," said on soldier as he left the chapel.

Today-In-Honor Today-In-Honor-Of Photography by J.M. Simpson

September 3, 2009 at 9:02am

Morning Report

Filed under: Health, Morning Report, News To Us,

September 4, 2009 at 8:19am

Morning Report

September 4, 2009 at 11:10am

Operation Homefront's 2009 Freedom Walk

MICHAEL SWAN: OPERATION HOMEFRONT WASHINGTON REMEMBERS 9-11 >>>

On Friday Sept. 11, Operation Homefront will join groups across America to host a Freedom Walk in remembrance of the 9-11 attacks.  The 2-mile Freedom Walk will begin and end at Thea Park in Tacoma. Walkers will start, er, walking at 5 p.m. There is no cost to participate. ?

Pre-register online here. 

Filed under: Memorial, Sports, Tacoma,

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