Fort Polk Guardian 11-21-2018

FORT POLK, La. — I had the op- portunity to attend the Joint Readi- ness Training Center and Fort Polk Veterans Day 50th Anniversary Viet- nam War Veterans Welcome Home Celebration on Nov. 8. I watched as 127 Vietnam War vet- erans marched into the 1st Battalion, 5th Aviation Regiment hangar at Fort Polk Army Airfield. I could not con- trol my emotions, and tears began to roll down my cheeks. I felt that I had a relationship with these heroes; I had just pinned the Vietnam Veter- ans commerative pin on them prior to the ceremony. It seemed each of them had a sto- ry to tell or a joke to share, such as “Don’t stick me, or I will cry.” I laughingly replied, “Man up. You’re a Vietnam vet- eran; you can handle any- thing.” A big smile would cover their faces. One Vietnam veteran told me the story of how he was ignored in the airport by fellow Americans and only approached by a hare kr- ishna who was trying to sell him something. Well, on Nov. 8 these brave sol- diers were recognized not for what we could sell them, but what we could give to them — a well-de- served recognition for the risks and hardships they endured to keep us free. After the anxious wait for the hangar doors to rise, these brave sol- ders marched in with honor and pride as thundering cheers rang out throughout the hangar. Some marched in on walk- ers, some with a cane and others with a limp, but you could see the honor and pride on each of their faces. As I lie down tonight, I will rest in peace because I know there is an American Soldier somewhere like these brave veterans, waiting, will- ing and ready to defend my free- dom. Viewpoint 2/ The Guardian , a civilian enter- prise newspaper, is an authorized publication for members of the U.S. Army. Contents of the Guardian are not necessarily official views of, or en- dorsed by, the U.S. Government, De- partment of Defense, Department of the Army or Fort Polk. The Guardian is published weekly by the Public Affairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. Printed circulation is 13,000. Everything advertised in this publication shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage with- out regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other nonmerit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. A confirmed violation of this policy of equal opportunity by an ad- vertiser will result in the refusal to print advertising from that source. All editorial content of the Guardian is prepared, edited, pro- vided and approved by the Public Af- fairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. The Guardian is printed by the Natchitoches Times , a private firm in no way connected with the Depart- ment of the Army, under exclusive written contract with Fort Polk. The civilian printer is responsible for com- mercial advertising. The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts and supplements, does not constitute en- dorsement by the Department of the Army or the Natchitoches Times of the products or services advertised. Guardian Editorial Staff Brig. Gen. Patrick D. Frank Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk commanding general Col. Jarrett Thomas II Garrison commander Kim Reischling Information strategies officer Chuck Cannon Editor Jean Dubiel Angie Thorne Staff writers Editorial Offices Building 4919, Magnolia Street Fort Polk, LA 71459-5060 Voice (337) 531-4033 Fax (337) 531-1401 Email: Trading post ads: Fort Polk Homepage Advertising For advertising contact (337) 404-7242 Email: Guardian Nov. 21, 2018 Writer appreciates veterans’ service Commentary By PEGGY BLUITT School liaison officer JRTC and Fort Polk Soldiers, Air- men, Families, DA Civilians, guests, and local neighbors: Command Sgt. Maj. Bass and I would like to wish each of you a Happy Thanksgiving. We are grate- ful that this year for Thanksgiving the majority of our Soldiers are here at Fort Polk — last year 3/10 MTN was deployed to Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan; the 573rd Engineer Company returned on Monday evening from 9-months in Afghanistan; Soldiers from the 46th Engineer Battalion just returned from recovery operations at Tyndall Air Force Base in Florida; multiple 353rd Soldiers have returned from deployments to Afghanistan; and the Operations Group just completed the eleventh JRTC rotation for the calendar year. After all the time you have been deployed or working within a de- manding unit operational tempo, we encourage you to relax and enjoy your well-deserved Thanksgiving here in the United States: Watch the parades, have a great Thanksgiving meal either in the Guardian Inn Din- ing Facility or a home cooked meal surrounded by Family — or both (PT hard next week!); and enjoy the foot- ball games. JRTC and Fort Polk still have Sol- diers that remain forward deployed — let’s all remember the 519th MP Battalion serving in Iraq; 705th EOD also deployed to Iraq; and multiple individuals deployed in Afghanistan, Kuwait, Jordan, Dji- bouti, Qatar and Honduras. The Fort Polk Families of each of these de- ployed Solders are sacrificing shar- ing the traditions of Thanksgiving so that our Nation can remain safe. We look forward to the return of each of our deployed Soldiers. A special Thanksgiving welcome this year to 420 Soldiers from the 25th Infantry Division that remain with us here at Fort Polk following their recent JRTC rotation. These Tropic Lightening Soldiers will join us in the dining facility for a great Thanksgiving dinner and probably sleep the entire flight back to Hawaii! Great to share an Army Thanksgiving with the 25th Infantry Division. Thank you for all that each of you do — from building readiness for our Army during JRTC rotations to ensuring your globally deployable formation is fully prepared to be on point for the Nation. On this unique- ly American holiday, we wish the en- tire JRTC and Fort Polk Team a Hap- py Thanksgiving. FORGING THE WARRIOR SPIRIT! HOME OF HEROES CG, CSM wish Polk team HappyThanksgiving By Brig. Gen. PATRICK D. FRANK Commander, JRTC and Fort Polk The staff of the Fort Polk Guardian wishes everyone a HappyThanksgiving! For advertising contact Theresa Larue 7242 E ail: sales