One of the members of our Military Support Network has a son who is still in Iraq. His name is John Heald and he is quoted in the story below. Both of his grandfather's have died while he was on deployment.
By Sgt. Dean Davis,Unit Regimental Combat Team 8
NINEWA PROVINCE, Iraq — Since the Marine Corps is known for its expeditionary prowess, maybe one of the best examples of this trait can be found in Iraq’s Ninewa province. Patrolling the terrain of northern Iraq, the Marines of 3rd Platoon, Company D, 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, Regimental Combat Team 8, have spent the bulk of their deployment staying true to this expeditionary mindset by remaining ‘outside the wire’ to interdict smuggling.
“The work these Marines do is tough and they do a phenomenal job every time,” said Staff Sgt. Joshua J. Lepper, platoon sergeant for 3rd Platoon. “The highlight of this deployment has been seeing the Marines out in the field for 75 days at a time with no complaints and happy to do the job they are assigned. I couldn’t ask for a better platoon of Marines.”
Occasionally the platoon returns to Sahl Sinjar Airfield, a remote airstrip here, but ask 1st Lt. John W. Heald, commander of 3rd Platoon, and he will tell you, that like the rest of the Marines in his platoon, he would rather be out operating in the desert and villages.
“It has been rough at times, but this platoon is very tight, which improves any situation,” said Heald. “Being out for this long and living out of the vehicles like this forced us to adapt.”
The rest of the story can be found here.