posted by 147 FA on Mar 29

Charlie Battery First Time Deployed Soldiers Speak Out What is it like to be deployed for the first time? Eighteen first time deployed Soldiers from Charlie Battery were asked about their experience on their year long deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. SPC Daryl SieverdingSpecialist Daryl Sieverding – “Being deployed for a year has made me appreciate the small things in life; Family. It has also been rewarding, serving with my brother Matt in Operation Iraqi Freedom.”       SPC Lindsey RichardsSpecialist Lindsey Richards – “I think the most difficult thing is getting used to the time changes and being away from family and friends.”       SPC Anthony BartmannSpecialist Anthony Bartmann – “The deployment seemed easy compared to what we could have gotten, but it didn’t change the fact that it was still hard being away from everybody back home.”       SPC Eric ThornberrySpecialist Eric Thornberry – “The best thing about this deployment was being able to work out everyday and bond with the other guys.”       SPC Austin GillisSpecialist Austin Gillis – “This deployment went by fast and was a good experience. It was nice being able to keep in close touch with family and friends back home. The training and skills I learned for our mission will help me with jobs in the states. My family was very sad to see me go but is very proud and supportive.”       PFC James ZimmermanPrivate First Class James Zimmerman – “Looking back, the time went fast and as a first time deployer, it was a good experience. My family didn’t like that I was deployed but stood behind the choices I made; being a Soldier.”       SPC Zachary VanBriesenSpecialist Zachary VanBriesen – “The best thing about this deployment is I am with a very good group of Soldiers. I don’t have a whole lot to complain about being here but I do miss being away from my family and friends. I made some good friends here and am proud of my service to my country. My family couldn’t be happier for me. They are proud of me serving my country.”       SPC Eric KayserSpecialist Eric Kayser – “My deployment was an interesting part of my life; to actually see how other cultures work and what it is really like for people over here. The best part of the deployment will be going home to see everyone again; it was probably the only thing that got me through this deployment. The most difficult part of the deployment were the days where I missed my home, family and friends. I will be proud to go back home and say that I did something for my country. My family supports me and my decision to serve my country.”       SPC Joshua SmockSpecialist Joshua Smock – “The most rewarding thing was working with the local nationals and getting to experience their culture and customs. The most difficult thing was for me to leave my wife and son at home.”       SPC Wade RossSpecialist Wade Ross – “One of the best things about this deployment was that I was able to get out of debt. The worst thing was being away from my little girl. I missed watching her grow up. It was rewarding getting to know my battle buddy and all of the Soldiers in my platoon.”       SPC Jonathon SchroederSpecialist Jonathon Schroeder – “I really enjoyed the unit that I was deployed with and getting to know my battle buddies. It has been very hard being away from my family. I am proud that I did my part in some way to help with the war. Military service runs in my family with my sister and two brothers being veterans. They are very proud of me.”       SPC Donald OneillSpecialist Donald Oneill – “Being deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom was a good experience and I am glad I got to do it. The best part of the deployment was getting to know so many Soldiers. The worst part was preparing to deploy. I am proud that I am SECFOR at the SPOD, serving my country for a year.”       SGT Guy MarcucciSergeant Guy Marcucci – “It was great building comradery with my fellow Soldiers. It is a rewarding feeling, knowing I am doing my part in this war, sacrificing for my country.”       SPC Todd SchaeferSpecialist Todd Schaefer – “I really liked getting to know the different cultures and types of people here. I really got to work on my physical fitness while being deployed. I could barely run before and now I go on 8 mile runs. I am proud that I did my part in the war.”       SPC Geoffrey PollmanSpecialist Geoffrey Pollman – “I am glad I got to experience the Arabic culture and see a part of the world that I never would have been able to see. I am proud that I am serving my country with honor. This has been a one year experience that I will never forget.”       SPC Nicholas SaylerSpecialist Nicholas Sayler – “It was great being able to meet new people and make new friends. It was difficult being away from my family, girl friend and friends for a year. I am proud that I got to come over here to do my part in the war. This was an experience that I would have never gotten back home.”       SPC April MurraySpecialist April Murray - “I got back into shape on this deployment, training for a marathon. I feel like this is the real me and that I found myself again. It was hard being the only female in the platoon, not having another girl to hang out with. After nine years, I finally got to come over here and serve my country.”       SFC Dave HoitenSergeant First Class Dave Hoiten – “Being deployed this past year for me went by fast, as I have a very strong family supporting me back home. Although when this deployment ends, it also will end my military career of over 27 years as I will be retiring. I will walk away with my head held high and be very proud to have finally gotten a chance to serve my country in my last year of service at age 44. If I would get a chance and had to do it over again, I wouldn’t change a single thing.

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