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Volume 1 Issue 2 From the Battalion Commander Inside This Issue: BN Newsletter: Page 1 HHD: Page 2 129thCo: Page 3 710thCo: Page 4 759thCo: Page 5 Chaplain: Page 6, 7 FRSA: Page 8 707th Co: Holiday Edition Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Suzanne and I are extremely happy to be here in the beautiful Pacific Northwest and Ft Lewis this Holiday season. I want to thank you for all that you are doing and your efforts this past year, from our Soldiers who are the best in the Army to our Spouses and families that have an extremely hard job while their Soldier is deployed. We need to keep our heroes foremost in our minds during the Holidays. This is a tough time of year when you are deployed. Thoughts of missing family gatherings, children opening presents and home are amplified. Maintaining contact and sending letters and packages are important to remind them that we are thinking of them every day. I am humbled by their sacrifice and the support our families provide. I cannot believe it is Christmas already and we are sending out this second edition to our BN Newsletter. Tammy and all the FRGs have done a tremendous job pulling this together. I look forward to meeting most of you at the Christmas party. This year has been extremely busy with multiple moving pieces and events. Our deployed units are doing well in their respective deployed theaters. Their performance is clearly an indication of what great young men and women we have in the 3EOD BN. Suzanne and I want to wish all of you a Happy Holiday and a safe and healthy New Year. “NIGHTHAWKS” LTC William Downer Command Sergeant Major Well it is that time of year again, the holiday season is upon us and we are all looking forward to gifts, great food and spending time with family. Unfortunately during this time, many of our Soldiers are away from their families on deployments defending our country and the freedoms that we enjoy. Even though they are away we always keep them in our minds during this time of year. Please ensure that you keep in close contact with your Soldier during these festive times as they can lose focus and miss home that much more. Let them know that they are missed and share photos of your holiday gatherings with them. You would be surprised how much a single photograph or short video of their loved ones can perk up their day. Care packages are another great way of sending your Soldier a little piece of home. I’m sure you have been sending packages up to now, but something special for the holidays would be met with great appreciation. I hope that where ever you are you have a safe and joyous holiday season and relish this time to be with family and friends. MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!! “NIGHTHAWKS” CSM Robert Doig
The holiday season is here and as we spend time with our families, I ask you to think about safety when it comes to holiday activities. When we return from Holiday leave we will be starting our pre-deployment training, most of the training has been scheduled to maximize our training opportunities during duty hours and will allow us to spend the most time possible with our families, however there will be the occasional late nights and early mornings, so we will ask that you please be patient as we gear up to train and then deploy. HHD still does not have an HHD FRG leader, so if there is anyone who would like to volunteer there time, please contact 1SG Sutton @ 253-548-5036 for more details. Hail & Farewell… In the past few months we’ve said goodbye to: SFC Kallie 1SG Ryan CPT Laase SSG Londono And we’ve had the opportunity to welcome: SFC Chaudhry SGT Hubbard SSG Estrella Something to add ? If you have anything you’d like to share with the families of the HHD or suggestions of what you’d like to see in our newsletter, please feel free to send them to LT Emily Worthing at email@example.com
129TH COMPANY COMPANY COMMAND TEAM The129th EOD Company had three EOD Soldiers participate in the Team Leader Academy at Fort Hood, TX. They performed exceptionally well. We are looking for some recommendations on topics for our FRG meetings next year. Please feel free to give us a call with your ideas. Our EOD Soldiers will be able to perform real world missions starting next month when we begin to perform a backstopping mission for the 53rd EOD Company at Yakima Training Center, WA. Our Soldiers will rotate on response during January and February so the 53rd can prepare for deployment. CPT Hite and his family will be departing the unit on 17 March 2010. He has been selected to the Operational Research and Systems Analysis branch and will begin school in April 2010. As a new FRG we are required to fill two mandatory volunteer positions. We still have an opening for the FRG Secretary. Also with Mrs. Ellie Hite departing we will need to fill the FRG Leader position starting in March. If you would like to volunteer for either of these positions, or would like to help with the FRG in any other capacity, please feel free to call myself or the Battalion FRSA, Tammy Flores at (253) 967-9969. As we continue to grow we will have additional Volunteer opportunities. CPT Jason Hite and 1SG Timothy Frey Upcoming Events Christmas 24-27 December 2009 New Year 31 Dec 09 – 3 Jan 10 MLK Weekend15-18 January 2010 FRG Meeting February 2010 Welcome None Farewell None
710TH COMPANY From the Command Team Season’s Greetings, With these last two months being so very busy, training, holidays, and of course, holiday preparation, I would like to thank the families of the 710th for their continued support. Here are some of the highlights of our activities. Homeland Defense (HLD): Since August, the 710th has been providing emergency response to Ft. Lewis and surrounding local agencies for explosives related incidents. We have run an average of four incident responses per week with a minimum of personnel. This mission also includes VIP support to White House personnel in coordination with the United States Secret Service. Team Leader Certification and Academy: We have spent a great deal of time training our junior NCO’s to become Team Leader Certified. We have made great strides in completing the many tasks required to ensure that our NCO’s are up to the challenge. With that, all of our future team leader’s have either attended the 79th EOD BN sponsored training event geared toward training and certifying our team leaders. Special recognition goes to SGT Jason Garza for his top performance out of 15 certifying team leaders that attended the first iteration of the event. Great job to the rest of the NCOs in attendance from the 710th; compliments were extended from all levels to their outstanding performance. Transition to deployment training: December is our final month of HLD and will mark the transition for the 710th to gear up for the next overseas deployment. January, February and March will be marked by attendance by our NCO’s to professional development schools while the remaining personnel complete necessary training at home station. Happy Holidays to all. CPT Ty G. Dawson 1SG Jeremy P. Daniels
759th Company In September, 14 members of our unit deployed to Iraq to join with their counterparts from 203rd Military Intelligence Battalion as part of the Weapons Intelligence Team (WIT) Task Force. The soldiers are dispersed throughout Iraq and are busy conducting battlefield forensic investigations to aid in the counter IED fight. Their work provides valuable intelligence used to develop trends and aid in the capture suspected bomb makers. The Company rear detachment continues to support NTC and the Homeland Defense mission at Fort Irwin. With several new soldiers and a new XO, training remains a priority and is a key part of the mission. Jana Ralston, the Company FRG Leader , continues to assist the families of the 759th. From all us at the 759th, have a very happy holiday! 1LT Bryan R Sand
By Chaplain (CPT) Stephan H. Buchanan Unit Ministry Team This Tradition was Almost Lost! We all know the history behind Christmas Day. It is an annual Christian holiday celebrating the birth of God's Son, Jesus Christ. Christmas wasn't always celebrated in this country; in fact, history shows that it was actually banned in some parts of the United States. Between the years of 1659-1681, the Puritans in New England disapproved of the celebration of Christmas because they considered it a heathen holiday. The Puritans had gotten this idea from the English Parliament when they had forbidden Christmas to be celebrated in England. The reason for this was the Bible mentions the Lord's day is the only day that should be considered holy. Meanwhile, states such as Virginia and New York went on celebrating. Christmas Day then fell out of favor with the people in the United States all together after the American Revolution. Christmas was at that point thought to be an "English Custom" and the people of the United States didn't want anything to do with their way of life. Congress was actually in session on Christmas Day in 1789, the first Christmas under America's new constitution. In 1819, Washington Irving, an American author wrote a book of short stories called "The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon". In this book, Irving outside the DC area. It was not long before the celebration of Christmas was wide spread throughout the United States. From the beginning, Christmas was about celebrating the birth of our Lord and Savior, the sSon of God Jesus Christ, by sharing and giving to those we care about. Although that is still the central theme today, the holiday season has become a time of commercialization, toys and money. If you grew up in the Church find yourself this Christmas season being drawn to the origins of this holiday, I urge you to spend some time talking to God, perhaps even take your family to one of the Christmas services in the Fort Lewis McCord area. The service schedule is located on the next page. Lastly, I ask that you remember your family this holiday season. In an era where we deploy frequently, we all need to take advantage of our time at home. This includes spending quality time with your loved ones. Happy Eid!! Happy Chanukah!! Merry Christmas!! described various Christmas traditions that were thought to be true but in reality these traditions were Irving's ideas of what the Christmas holiday should be about. Even though these Christmas traditions were thought up in Irving's mind, the people of the United States made them a part of their holiday season. In the year of 1850, Christmas trees started to be sold commercially in the United States. This started because images of the royal family of England with their Christmas tree were printed in English magazines in 1848. England had restored the celebration of Christmas in 1660 after one hundred years of reformation and Puritan restraint. This same print was then copied in the United States in 1850 because Queen Victoria was always copied for her fashion sense even in American society. It wasn't until June 26, 1870 that Christmas became a federal holiday. At first, Christmas was only applicable to federal employees in the District of Columbia. It wasn't until 1885 that Congress extended the Christmas holiday to the federal employees CATHOLIC HOLIDAY SERVICES Reconciliation Sat 1600 Main Post Chapel Mass Sat 1700 Main Post Chapel Mass Sun 09000 North Fort Chapel Mass Sun 1200 Main Post Chapel Mass Daily 1150 Main Post Chapel PROTESTANT HOLIDAYSERVICES Chapel next sun 1000 Four Chaplains Memorial Chapel Liturgical Sun 0800 Main post Chapel Protestant sun 1000 Main Post Chapel Protestant Sun 1030 Soldiers Chapel Contemporary Sun 1100 McChord Chapel Gospel Sun 1100 North Fort Chapel Chaplain Stephan H. Buchanan Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Phone Numbers: Office: (253) 966-6651 Cell: (253) 973-3428 SGT Clarence D. Slaughter Email: Clarence.email@example.com Phone Number: Cell: (253) 548-4883
Family Readiness Support Assistant newsletter Battalion Holiday Party We had our Battalion holiday party on December 21st at the Family Resource Center. It was a huge success. Everyone seemed relaxed and enjoying themselves. I know that it was one of my better holiday parties that I have attended. For those of you who stepped forward to assist with the planning or to help set up and tear down, to being a Santa’s helper or to running a booth, or any other part that you played in the Battalion party, Please know that your help and your support is what made this party such a huge success. Thank You so much ! If anyone has any idea’s, comments, or concerns in regards to the Christmas party, you are more than welcome to send them my way and I will respond back to you promptly. For the soldiers who are deployed, please know that you and your loved one’s are in our hearts and prayers each and everyday and hope that you all can have a wonderful holiday with your families and your friends. FRG Treasurer Training Will cover Fundraising Guidelines for FRG Funds Forms maintaining FRG account/audit Next Class Date 2 FEB 6:30-7:30 P.M FRG Leadership Training “Green Suite Style” FRG Leadership training for active duty members who are involved with the FRG. Training sessions, include: Establishing an FRG, Fundraising/money, Newsletters and Volunteerism Next Class Date 21 JAN 9:00- 1:00 P.M FRG Leader’s Training This is a mandatory class for FRG Leaders. Next Class Date: 17-18 FEB 9:00 – 2:30 p.m. If interested in attending, you can call the FRC to register at 253-967-9496 one month prior to the date of training. Childcare may be available by calling 253-966-2490 two weeks prior to the date of training. Care Team Members needed Care Teams are ACS Trained volunteers who support and assist the primary next of kin of a Fallen Warrior, once the Next of Kin has been notified and at the request of the family. A Care Team is sent in to support the Family until their personal support system has arrived and is in place. It is a short term assignment, depending on the needs of the family. If interested in being a CARE Team Member, the next class will be held on January 5th 2010 from 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. to register for a class, please call or email Pamela Allen at (253) 967-8430 or firstname.lastname@example.org Resource of the Month Have you ever heard of the Career advancement account and wondered what it is ?. CAA provides Active Duty Spouses up to $6000.00 for an opportunity to attend college and get a degree in a portable career. You can use these funds to apply towards tuition, education and credential related expenses for a two year period. If you are interested in finding out more information about the Career advancement account. You can check out these websites for more information and also to see if you qualify for this great offer. www.caa.milspouse.org or www.militaryonesource.