16 Green Country Soldiers Say Goodbye To Family And Friends

Sunday, October 3rd 2010, 11:09 am
By: News On 6

Lacie Lowrey, Newson6.com

TULSA, Oklahoma -- Several Green Country families are preparing for a long goodbye as they send their soldiers off to war.

Sunday morning was the farewell ceremony for sixteen soldiers from the 164th Quartermaster Group out of Broken Arrow.

The soldiers from the group are heading to the war zone. The youngest is 20-year-old Specialist Garrett Garner.

"I've had the most experience with the equipment we will actually use," Said Specialist Garrett Garner. "So I should be able to get everything positioned right, get it down quick, help out as much as I can,"

The group is deploying in support of Operation New Dawn, the final phase of America's military mission in Iraq.

It calls for 50,000 U.S. troops to stay in the country, as others head home.

Major Steven Davis is a 24-year army veteran. This is his 3rd deployment and he knows exactly what he'll miss.

"Just missing home, missing family, the wife, waking up in your own bed and using your own shower every day, just the comforts of life," explained Major Davis.

Even after two deployments during 12 years of marriage, Major Davis' wife, Kelly Davis, says it never gets easier to say goodbye.

"It's a little tough," She says."Luckily my family lives really close and it's just kind of hard, sending your husband off."

The families often carry the biggest burden of war. Family Readiness Groups support the loved ones left at home when service members deploy.

"When a spouse is taken out of the picture, families have to step up and become that spouse, so they are playing dual roles," said Dawn Braun, the Family Readiness Group Leader.

The soldiers say the sacrifice is worth the cause.

"I know there's a lot of dangerous things going on in the world and if I can do my part to help make it safer, then that's what I'll do," Major Davis said.

The sixteen soldiers are heading to Camp Atterbury in Indiana for a month of training. Then, they deploy for a full year to provide fuel support and fuel distribution.