Macon County Chronicle

278th Begins First Leg of Deployment

The National Guard Troop E Support Squadron of the 278th Armored Calvary Regiment, located in Lafayette, left on Sunday, December 6th for pre-mobilization training at Camp Shelby, Mississippi as the first leg of deployment to Iraq. Tennessee’s largest unit, they will remain at this post for two months before deploying overseas with roughly 3,000 other Guardsmen.

“The guards will basically go to Camp Shelby to learn certain soldier skills from firing on the ranges to cultural classes on the environment in Iraq and how to fit in,” said Randy Harris, the Director of Joint Public Affairs for the State of Tennessee. “Each soldier has a certain number of tasks he has to be proficient in before being shipped overseas.”

“This will be the third Iraq deployment for the 278th,” Harris continued, “but it will be an entirely different mission and further updates will be provided as available. This is the second time for many of these soldiers and they’re doing what they are trained to do in these troubled times. They focus on the job and getting it done and they will be expected to spend a year there this time before being shipped back home in 2011. Their spirits are high and these dedicated soldiers are optimistic about the future.”

With tyrants on the loose our dedicated men and women shed their blood for us, that we might continue to enjoy our freedom. They fight all forms of oppression to keep us safe and protect what we hold dear. America is the only country that gives with its whole heart and asks so very little in return. Let’s show our soldiers that we are blessed with people like them who are true heroes, who bravely meet each and every test with courage.

“They defend us everywhere, and unselfishly guard our nation,” said Macon County Chronicle Publisher Kathryne Belle. “Some come back and some don’t and they definitely deserve our admiration. What they do we can never repay so let’s all join together and say thank you to our brave men and women in uniform.”

(The Macon County Chronicle has dedicated a window in recognition of the 278th Armored Calvary Regiment in Lafayette, recognizing our brave soldiers who so courageously protect our country. Various photographs will be on display, but unfortunately we don’t have pictures of all the guardsmen, so please feel free to drop one by our office located on the public square and we will proudly display it among the others.)