of 52/52
August 2009 www.army.mil The Official U.S. Army Magazine Honoring Soldiers with music Web site pays tribute to servicemembers, page 20 Survival training Soldiers live outside their comfort zone, page 6 Connections through music The Volunteers rock the house, page 14 Remembering D-Day Veterans take time to remember the past while living for today, page 44

Soldiers Magazine, US Army, August 2009 - US Army Africa Special Report

  • View

  • Download

Embed Size (px)


Check out page 6 for a special US Army Africa report!The mission of Soldiers magazine is to provide, in print format, accurate and timely information about Army operations and policies to Soldiers, their families and select members of government. Soldiers Magazine is distributed monthly to a worldwide audience of approximately 525,000.http://www.usaraf.army.mil

Text of Soldiers Magazine, US Army, August 2009 - US Army Africa Special Report

SoldiersAugust 2009 www.army.mil The Official U.S. Army Magazine

Connections through musicThe Volunteers rock the house, page 14

Honoring Soldiers with musicWeb site pays tribute to servicemembers, page 20 Veterans take time to remember the past while living for today, page 44 Soldiers live outside their comfort zone, page 6

Remembering D-Day

Survival training


August 2009 VOLUME 64, NO. 8

The family of Sgt. 1st Class Danny J. Hocker, assigned to 2nd Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, embraces him during a welcome home ceremony in Vilseck, Germany, Oct. 23, 2008, after a 15-month deployment to Iraq. The Army is concerned about Soldiers' health once they return home. See story on page 28. (Photo by Spc. Pastora Y. Hall)

SoldiersAugust 2009 www.army.mil The Official U.S. Army Magazine

Connections through musicThe Volunteers rock the house

( On the Cover ) Soldiers feel the rhythm with music. See pages 14 & 20.

( Coming Next Month ) September 2009 - Drill Sergeant of the Year competition.

Honoring Soldiers with musicWeb site JamsBio pays tribute to servicemembers Veterans take time to remember the past while living for today Living outside their comfort zone

Remembering D-Day Survival training

Contents4 6Comprehensive Soldier FitnessMental, emotional and social well being are just as important as physical fitness.


Survival training

Feature Stories

Soldiers learn to live outside their comfort zone in the South African bush.

32 36 40 44

10 14 20 28

Forming bonds through medicineServicemembers provide medical assistance in remote areas of Djibouti.

Women apply Soldier "can-do" spirit to roller derby competitions. A Soldier discovers he's a descendant of a famous Civil War general.

Flat track fever

A family legacy

Musical connectionsThe Volunteers rock the house and tell the Army story through music.

In the thick of the fightA Mississippi boy grows up fast on the World War II battlefields of Europe.

Honoring Soldiers with musicMusic Web site JamsBio pays tribute to American servicemembers.

Remembering D-DayVeterans take time to remember the past while living for today.Sgt. 1st Class Nickolas Maney, of the 6th Ranger Training Battalion, learns the art of surviving in the South African bush from a South African special forces instructor. See story on page 6. (Photo courtesy of U.S. Army Africa)

Protecting Soldiers' healthSoldiers returning from a combat zone are screened for potential health problems.

Departments19 24 31Faces of Strength On Point Family Covenant

Spc. Earl "Doug" Boyce and wife Joy pose for a wedding picture at Fort Wainwright, Alaska. Joy dedicated the song "At Last" to her husband to stay romantically connected with him during his deployment. See story on page 20. (Photo courtesy of Joy Boyce)

Defense Media Activity-Army | Soldiers magazine | 2511 Jefferson Davis Hwy , Box 31 | Arlington, VA 22202-3900 | (703) 602-0870 | DSN 332-0870 | Fax (703) 602-8314 | http://www.army.mil/soldiers

DEFENSE MEDIA ACTIVITY ARMYWe Want Your StoryThe Army is our nations greatest resource in defense of our homeland. Every day Soldiers and civilians perform acts of valor. The heroic acts performed on the battlefield and the acts of kindness from humanitarian efforts de monstrate the strength of the Army. We want to tell your story. To find out how Defense Media Activity-Army can tell your story, contact your unit public affairs officer or send your submissions via e-mail to:

The Official U.S. Army MagazineSecretary of the Army: Hon. Pete Geren Chief of Staff: Gen. George W. Casey Jr. Chief of Public Affairs: Maj. Gen. Kevin J. Bergner Defense Media Activity-Army Commander: Col. MaryAnn Cummings Print Communications Staff Editor in Chief: Carrie McLeroy Managing Editor: David Vergun Soldiers Magazine NCOIC: Master Sgt. Nancy Morrison Soldiers Magazine Writer/Editor: Elizabeth M. Collins Soldiers Magazine Writer/Editor: Jacqueline M. Hames ARNEWS Editor: Gary Sheftick ARNEWS Writer: J. D. Leipold ARNEWS Writer: C. Todd Lopez Visual Information Staff Art Director: Peggy Frierson Graphic Designer: LeRoy Jewell Army Publishing Directorate Print Management/Quality Control: Mr. Richard J. Sowell

Printing: Gateway Press, Inc., Louisville, Ky.Soldiers (ISSN 0093-8440) is published monthly by the Army Chief of Public Affairs to provide information on people, policies, operations, technical developments, trends and ideas of and about the Department of the Army. The views and opinions expressed are not necessarily those of the Department of the Army. Send submissions and correspondence to Editor, Soldiers magazine, Defense Media Activity-Army, Box 31, 2511 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Arlington, VA 222023900. Phone: (703) 602-0870, or send e-mail to [email protected] Unless otherwise indicated (and except for by permission and copyright items), material may be reprinted provided credit is given to Soldiers and the author. All uncredited photographs by U.S. Army. The Secretary of the Army has determined that the publication of this periodical is necessary in the transaction of the public business as required by law of the department. Funds for printing this publication were approved by the secretary of the Army in accordance with the provisions of Army Regulation 25-30. Library of Congress call number: U1.A827. Periodicals postage paid at Fort Belvoir, Va., and additional mailing offices. Individual subscriptions: Subscriptions can be purchased through the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402, (202) 512-1800 or online at: http://bookstore.gpo.gov/collections/ subscriptions/index.jsp.: 200936S/80017

[email protected] (703) 602-0870

Magazine archives: http://www.army.mil/soldiers/archives

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to the Arlington address above.

Soldiers magazine is distributed based on unit commanders requirements. Commanders and publications officers can order Soldiers through the Army Publishing Directorate at https://ptclick.hqda.pentagon.mil. (Requires CAC authentication). To start or change your unit subscription, enter the Initial Distribution Number (IDN) 050007.

Recipient of Awards of Magazine Excellence

Thomas Jefferson Awards Outstanding Flagship Publication 2004 - 2006

NAGC Blue Pencil Competition 2004

Thomas Jefferson Awards Outstanding Flagship Writer 2007 Heike Hasenauer


www.army. mil/soldiers

MailcallLetters from the field

February issue Dear Soldiers magazine, Sergeant Jeffrey Dilchers letter (in Mays issue) taking exception to the photo used in the Year of the NCO insert shows that this Army oftentimes can still be more about style than substance, which as a noncommissioned officer, I find more disconcerting than whether a guys sleeves are rolled up. I look at the images of NCOs from World War II in particular. Sleeves are rolled up, uniforms are out of sync, and yet victory in Europe and the Pacific was won by these dog-faced warriors, many of who were exceptional junior leaders. I wont even get into the bearded faces and lack of uniformity of our Civil War veterans! That image tells a story. It shows an NCO in the field, on the mission, getting his hands dirty with the locals. Maybe he wasnt issued eye protection, or perhaps his chain of command didnt require it for that mission. Maybe, too, his chain of command was using those radios for a reason, determining that the IED threat in their area was inconsequential. Maybe he had just made an excruciating journey through tormenting terrain. Chinstraps get sweaty and uncomfortable. Hes still wearing the helmet and his vest, however, and his weapon is ready to go. Jacked up or squared away are matters of perspective, and I like the gritty concept imparted by this image. Its our most important value as NCOs: leadership from the front. Im proud of this NCO, working his craft in the field, and frankly, Im disgusted that we have to indulge a junior NCO judging another junior NCO through the lens of garrison eye. Leadership isnt just about nitpicking; its also about imagination and inspiration. Those are the qualities that move marginal to exceptional in leadership parlance, and I would say more than scrutiny of standards, is why this year should be the Year of the NCO. Shalom, Sgt. Brian Kresge Co. C, 2/112th Infantry (Stryker) May issue I am writing to request a correction be made to the (ARNEWS brief ) titled, Help available for military hit by housing market, included in the May 2009 issue. Some military families are finding themselves in a precarious situation when it comes to selling their house and relocating, said housing experts The government will cover 95 percent of the amount lost when servicemembers are forced to sell due to permanent change of station moves. The provision does have some limitations. The program only applies to servicemembers who purchased their homes before July 1,

2006, which is roughly the time when the housing market started to decline.(ARNEWS/Carol E. Davis) There is a sentence that may be misleading. The sentence, The government will cover 95 percent of the amount lost when servicemembers are forced to sell due to permanent change of station moves, leaves room for error and a false hope of 95 percent recovery in all cases. The statement should not have specifics like 95 percent, as the amount of entitlement can vary based on a number of factors. The Army Corps of Engineers Web page, established to provide information and process applications for the Homeowners Assistance Program, is located at http://hap.usace.army.mil. Very respectfully, Suzanne M. Harrison Acting assistant for Housing and Energy Office of the deputy assistant secretary of the Army for Installations and Housing From the editor: The author of the story printed in the ARNEWS section of Mays issue of Soldiers was correct when she wrote that under current guidelines, the government would cover 95 percent of the amount servicemembers lose when selling their homes as a result of a PCS move. However, clarification was needed. The government can cover up to 95 percent of the amount under current guidelines, but as Suzanne M. Harrison stated, that percentage is determined based on a number of factors. Once the Department of Defense has approved updated Homeowners Assistance Program guidance, the Army News Service will publish a follow-up article highlighting any changes at www.army.mil/ARNEWS. Correction for June issue Dear editor, I commend the staff for providing critical information that allows every Soldier to learn and grow from. However, in the June edition of Soldiers Magazine, there is a small typographical error on page 31 that could cause some new and future NCOs troubles when performing research. The source for the NCO ranks and responsibilities is listed as FM 22.7-7. It should actually read FM 7-22.7. I thank you and your entire staff for your tireless efforts to ensure Soldiers are informed. Master Sgt. Ronald C. Baldwin Jr. Chief instructor, Ordnance Training Company Regional Training Site-Maintenance Michigan Air National Guard

Soldiers Values Your OpinionTo comment, keep your remarks to under 150 words, include your name, rank and address, and send them to: Defense Media Activity-Army, Attn: Editor, Soldiers Magazine, Box 31, 2511 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Arlington, VA 22202-3900 or email: [email protected]

Soldiers August 2009


(Right) Sgt. David A. Leakey, assigned to the 45th Special Troops Battalion, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, performs push-ups as part of the Army physical fitness test during the 1st Sustainment Command (Theater) Soldier and Noncommissioned Officer of the Year competitions, May 13, at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait.

Story by Jacqueline M. Hames


(Above) Pre-Ranger students recite the Ranger Creed as they tread water during the Combat Water Survival Assessment portion of the Pre-Ranger Course.


Soldier FItness4 www.army.mil/soldiers

HE Army has always emphasized physical fitness as a large part of its training, but has not always focused as extensively on mental, emotional and social well being as it does today. The Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program will provide the missing link, teaching Soldiers to become more resilient in five aspects of total fitness: physical, emotional, social, spiritual and family strength. CSF is an Army of balanced and healthy Soldiers, families and civilians, whose total fitness will help them thrive in a high-tempo era of persistent conflict, according to the CSF vision. Army leaders believe an emotionally and physically healthy force will result in a reduction in rates of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, indiscipline, domestic violence, alcohol abuse, suicide and absences without leave. The program will be linked with the Army career tracker and the requirement for guided self-development, said Brig. Gen. Rhonda Cornum, director of CSF. It is a strategy to try and bring the same amount of attention to peoples spiritual, emotional and social fitness as we have historically done in the Army to physical fitness, she explained. CSF, stood up in October 2008, is developing a global assessment tool, which will assess all five elements of Soldier fitness, Cornum said. Assessments will help create resilience training that can be tailored to the individual.

Sgt. Giancarlo Casem

We have a study ongoing right now at Fort Jackson. Its teaching (resiliency techniques) as part of basic training. Teaching not just the mental aspect of it, but the physical part deep breathing, visualization about what will happen, so (they are teaching) the mental and intellectual aspects as well as the physical, Cornum said. Resiliency techniques have resulted in measurable improvements, she continued, adding that the Navy provides 45 minutes of resilience education a week during basic training. The results are improved graduation rates and decreased rates of psychological discharges. The same training would be applicable to civilians and family members and we certainly intend to offer it, Cornum added. Cornum, a medical doctor who holds doctorates in both nutrition and biochemistry, believes resilience training will help with something she calls post-traumatic growthmentally reframing an adverse situation so it does not become traumatic. Resilience training will help an individual look at more optimistic and realistic choices, rather than falling into negative thought processes, she explained. Cornum can speak personally

about post-traumatic growth experiences, since she has encountered them firsthand. While performing a search-and-rescue mission in late February 1991, during the Persian Gulf War, her Black Hawk helicopter was shot down. She and three other survivors were taken prisoner by Iraqi forces; Cornum was repatriated on March 6 of the same year. I have been very fortunate to have come through some difficult circumstances in my lifeand I think I had that post-traumatic growth experience because I went into it with an attitude of expecting that to happen. And I think we can give that opportunity to a lot more people, Cornum said. I think most peoplecertainly the literature says that most peoplewill come through a very difficult, very stressful, very traumatic experience with some kind of growth. But it does help and it does make it more likely if youve done some pre-adversity training, she explained. One example of CSF and resilience training Cornum cited was the Strong Bonds workshop the Army Chaplain Corps runs. Strong Bonds is a marriage-enrichment program focused on enabling spouses to communicate better and build a stronger relationship, the program Web site states. There is

evidence that it does improve family relationships, Cornum said. From a truly preventive standpoint, we would like to make selfconfident, mature, compassionate and empathetic Soldiers, Cornum explained. Resilience training and other programs, like Strong Bonds, will help create that type of Soldier, family and civilian, and decrease the likelihood of individuals engaging in negative behavior, like sexual assault. Cornum cautions that CSF is not directly related to sexual assault and suicide awareness or programs like the Family Covenant. Those are educational things, but theyre not really intended to increase your fitness. They are intended to inform your behavior, she said. Since October 2007, CSF has conducted extensive research for appropriate and effective training methods, as well as beginning implementation of the global assessment tool. Starting next year, training will be offered to families and civilians, and become mandatory for Soldiers, Cornum said. Im really excited about it, she added. vFor more information about CSF, visit www.army.mil/CSF. For more information about Strong Bonds, visit www. strongbonds.org.

Participants in the 2009 Fleet Feet Soldier Field 10-miler shadow run, at Forward Operating Base Fenty, Afghanistan, cross the starting line. The run at FOB Fenty was a satellite run of the 2009 Fleet Feet Soldier Field 10-miler held in Chicago, May 23. (inset) On the Armys Battlemind Web site, Sgt. Drew narrates a video to help children deal with deployment separation stress. The site contains resources that help Soldiers and family members cope with the stresses of a deployment.

Staff Sgt. Melinda Johnson

Soldiers August 2009 5

(Right) Soldiers undergo nearly three weeks of survival training in the South African bush in Phalaborwa, near Kruger National Park. (Below) Dry elephant dung was used by Soldiers for cooking fuel. Also, animal calls led Soldiers to water and sounded alarms as well, during evasion exercises.

Story by Rick Scavetta Photos courtesy U.S. Army Africa

our of y OutStaff Sgt. John Otfinoski carries an impala through the South African bush. Zulu instructors, masters of bush survival, showed Soldiers how to carry the game they hunted like a backpack.


HEN evading capture in the South African bush, grassy juice from an impalas stomach quenches thirst. Noisy hippos mean water is nearby, as does sighting an African fish eagle. These are a few tips Staff Sgt. John Otfinoski, a squad leader with Company C, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment, learned recently in survival school, taught by the South African Special Forces. Otfinoski was one of three noncommissioned officers to complete the three-week course in April, which focused on living off the land, tracking and evading capture. They strip you bare and teach you how to survive in the bush, Otfinoski said. It was different than anything else Ive ever experienced. Master Sgt. Robert Seifert, of Special Operations Command-Africa, 6 www.army.mil/soldiers

and Sgt. 1st Class Nickolas Maney, of the 6th Ranger Training Battalion, also took part. Often its U.S. Army NCOs offering mentorship to African nations one of the key missions for U.S. Army Africa. This case was the reverse. South African instructors taught U.S. Army NCOs how to survive in the wild, with little more than a rifle and canteen. They call it going back to Adam, right down to the basics, Seifert said. The stuff they teach youits the real deal. It throws you out of your comfort zone. That meant navigating at night by stars rather than using a GPS, or rubbing wood together over elephant dung

to spark a fire rather than flipping open a lighter. When youre all alone, its dark and you make firethats a psychological victory over nature, Seifert said. It says, Im not totally powerless. For Seifert, the SASF course reminded the 25-year veteran of his early days in the infantry, when survival training was an annual event. While some things the South Africans taught resembled training from his 17 years in special forces, he learned important lessons. Our Army has all this technology we rely onthey stripped those things away, Seifert said. We dont train like this anymore. It re-emphasized our

Master Sgt. Robert Seifert displays the first fish the survival course team caught on day one. During the three-week course, U.S. Army NCOs learned to fish using sticks, homemade string and improvised hooksthankfully catching bigger fish than this, he said.


ne t zo forOnce Soldiers disemboweled an impala, they squeezed grassy stomach contents into a canteen cup. Part of their survival challenge included eating the impalas liver, washed down with the gut water.

need to get back to basics. The course, which is normally just one phase for South African Special Forces recruits, was held specifically for foreign troops. The American NCOs trained alongside troops from France, Sweden and Botswana. The training took place in Phalaborwa, near Kruger National Parkroughly a five-hour drive northeast of Pretoria. The instructorswho spoke English with a choppy South African accentwere Zulus, veteran soldiers who grew up in the bush and fought with the SASF in Angola in the early 1980s, Otfinoski said. They are very proficient and know the bush like Wikipedia in their heads,

Otfinoski added. If youre thirsty, they know a plant with buds growing underneath that can fill your canteen. Living off the land also meant catching, killing and cooking their food. African monitor lizards taste likeyou guessed itchicken. Fire ash apparently adds a salty taste to boiled grasshoppers. The gut waterjuice squeezed from the grassy pulp found in an impalas stomachproved a point, but it was disgusting, Seifert said. It was the foulest thing I ever drank. In all, the Soldiers learned about more than 70 birds, 50 trees and 25 insect species. When it comes to eating bugs (yeah, they did a lot of that),

Otfinoski learned to avoid insects with bright colors. Stick to natural tones, like those of the brown grasshopperof which Otfinoski ate hundreds during his few weeks in the bush. I now know Ill never die if there are grasshoppers around, Otfinoski said. Id be totally comfortable. While learning to feed themselves, the NCOs also practiced the art of bush tracking, spying telltale signs such as broken branches or moved grass. Tracksor spoors, as South Africans sayare better seen with the sun to one side. Tracking at high noon is difficult. Tall wheat appears shinier after its walked though. Once they understood how to track, they learned the oppositehow to escape and evade capture. The Grey Lourie bird calls out go away when humans are near. It can be heard for miles, indicating danger when evading people tracking you. At night, grasshoppers stop chirping when you pass. If you didnt use the knowledge they offered, you wouldnt survive, Otfinoski said. This course pushed you to your limits. v

Rick Scavetta works for U.S. Army Africa Public Affairs.

Soldiers August 2009 7

Story by Rick Scavetta

NCO uses lessons learned on battlefield to mentor Soldiers


Staff Sgt. John Otfinoski coaches a Soldier at the machine gun range in Grafenwoeher, Germany. (Photo by 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team)

Creating shelter from scratch was just one of the things Staff Sgt. John Otfinoski learned in survival school. (Photo courtesy of Staff Sgt. John Otfinoski)

HEN Staff Sgt. John Otfinoski trains his weapons squad, he mentors on what saves lives in combat. A veteran infantryman who served four combat toursthree in Afghanistan, one in IraqOtfinoski knows training makes all the difference when bullets start to fly. Otfinoski recently attended South African Special Forces survival training, a program coordinated by U.S. Army Africa. But upon his return, Otfinoski headed straight to Grafenwoehr, Germany, to prepare for yet another combat deployment with his unit. Any opportunity for me to learn about the infantry craft, I take it, Otfinoski said. Im a grunt; but this Special Forces training taught me a lot. Now, Im passing it on. Otfinoskis company saw heavy combat in 2007 and 2008 fighting insurgents in Afghanistans Nuristan Province. Training to standard now means incorporating lessons learned from the battlefield. Deployments have increased my awareness of training and preparation, Otfinoski said. Those of us who have been downrange know what can happen, so we train like we fight, using scenarios based on what weve experienced. While his Soldiers asked what it was like to drink grassy juice from an impalas stomach during his time in the African bush, Otfinoski refocuses them and shares details more applicable to them in combat. Although his infantry experiences are extensive and unique, his recent training added new perspective, Otfinoski said. What we dont know, we sometimes fear, Otfinoski said. The South Africans taught us to look forward to what can happen, prepare yourself mentally and dont let fear set in. v

8 www.army.mil/soldiers

Become a CID Special Agent

Join an elite team of Army criminal investigators, 2009 9 Soldiers August contact your local CID office or visit www.cid.army.mil 2009 11 Soldiers Testpage

Forming bondsthrough medicine in the Horn of AfricaStory and photos by Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Jesse B. Awalt


ERVICEMEMBERS from Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa traveled throughout remote regions of Djibouti in March, providing medical and public health aid during a medical civil action program. The MEDCAP team, made up of Soldiers assigned to the 489th Civil Affairs Battalion, 360th Civil Affairs Brigade force-protection personnel, Sailors from Camp Lemoniers Expeditionary Medical Facility, and medics from the 414th Civil Affairs Battalion, visited several villages in the Gaggade Desert. During the MEDCAP, the

joint-service team administered the de-worming medication Albendazole, over-the-counter drugs for minor ailments, and provided acute care to more than 2,000 people. What we are doing here is a proven and effective public health intervention. Administering Albendazole to every eligible member of the community is a recommended practice in this part of Africa, said Maj. Remington Nevin, a public health physician assigned to the 360th. In addition to killing roundworms, which we feel is the principal benefit, this same medication can help to eradicate Filariasis as

well as a number of other neglected tropical diseases. To plan the project, CJTF-HOA worked with the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Djiboutian minister of health to identify areas of the country where health care is not easily accessible. They were not looking for sites that were close to the main road at all. They were really looking for the sites that were in the remote regions, said the MEDCAPs mission commander, Lt. Col. Todd Nord of the 360th. Rocky terrain leading to areas like the Gaggade Desert can present

Empty bottles of a de-worming medication sit in a box in Djibouti, March 8, 2009. Servicemembers from the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa gave the medication to Djiboutians during a medical civil action program.

10 www.army.mil/soldiers

A girl stands in line waiting for medication in Djibouti, during a medical civil action program conducted by servicemembers from the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, March 8. Servicemembers visited several villages in the Gaggade Desert during the weeklong project.

(Right) People wait in line in Djibouti during a medical civil action program conducted by servicemembers from the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.

Soldiers August 2009 11

A mother gives her child a dose of a de-worming medication, March 8, in Djibouti.

challenges for those who are willing to drive into it. It is not flatland and desert as one may think of when they think of Africa. There are mountainous ranges and regions and gorges, which make access to rendering health care to people somewhat difficult, said Col. Lorrie Oldham of the 354th Civil Affairs functional specialty team, currently as-

signed to the 360th. The United States government and its military services are able to get, in concert with the Djiboutian government and the minister of health, to these remote locations to provide healthcare. In addition to the Djiboutian government, it is necessary for CJTFHOA to obtain the respect and permission of tribal and village elders to treat

the citizens of their villages. When we get the permission of the village chief to come here, then it is very important that we show up, because they then, via word of mouth, spread the word out to the outlying community, said Oldham. Its not as simple as a TV or a radio or a newspaper or Internet or Twitter or text messaging or any of those things that are out there; this is truly word of mouth. People will come early. They will walk miles. Usually, when we pull up to a village to set up, there are about 100 to 200 people waiting on us to get started. The presence of village leaders helps the MEDCAP team gain the trust of the people they treat. In one village, village chief Ali Gadito Ali made sure the citizens of his village witnessed him taking a dose of Albendazole before assisting in its distribution. They dont know you, and they know me. Of course they get more confidence and they are happy when they see me right here. I showed them the good example. I drank it up and everybody started drinking it. If I dont drink it, nobody is going to drink it. We really appreciate what you all have done for us and we welcome you here. It is very beneficial for the village, what you have done for us. I would like to thank all of you, he told the servicemembers. CJTF-HOAs efforts to treat remote villages reflect the commands goal of building security capacity in the Horn of Africa. Through a strategy of conflict prevention, the task force helps to build the internal security capacities of countries at risk to prevail against extremists exploiting instability.

A boy cries after drinking a dose of a de-worming medication given to him by servicemembers from the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa during a medical civil action program in Djibouti.

12 www.army.mil/soldiers

Gen. (Anthony) Zinni, the former commander of CENTCOM (U.S. Central Command) said it best, that the real enemies in todays world are things like poor health, said Nevin. Good health has many benefits aside from simply establishing contacts here on this mission. It lays the groundwork for true stability and lasting peace in this region. Major Marc Riciti, a physicians assistant assigned to the 360th contemplated the long view of the medical care he provided. I think the children will be the ones who benefit the most from us being here. Theyre the ones who are going to remember us, they are the ones who are going to remember the Americans coming over and handing out soccer balls, taking care of illnesses, taking care of their families and that sort of thing, said Riciti. This is how we develop a generation of folks who will remember a time when we were here and will remember us in a good light. v

(Above) A man lies on a homemade stretcher during a medical civil action program conducted by servicemembers from Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, March 10, in Djibouti. Eleven of the mans 22 sons said they carried him from miles away to receive treatment for a leg injury. (Below) Maj. Marc Riciti, a physicians assistant assigned to the 360th Civil Affairs Brigade, applies a bandage to a local during a medical civil action program in Djibouti. Reserve Soldiers from the 360th Civil Affairs Brigade and the 414th and 489th Civil Affairs Battalions partnered with Sailors from Camp Lemoniers Expeditionary Medical Facility for the weeklong project. Riciti is deployed with the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.

Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Jesse B. Awalt is assigned to CJTF-HOA Public Affairs.

Soldiers August 2009 13

Connecting the American people with the Army through music

Story by Heather Santos Photos by Sgt. Maj. Loran McClung & Sgt. 1st Class Rob McIver



k l







nk14 www.army.mil/soldiers






k l

s t



o k



ks t


Sgt. 1st Class April Boucher belts out a tune during one of The Volunteers shows.


HE smoke clears. The curtain slowly rises as rowdy fans cheer. A group emerges sporting larger-than-life hair and lurid clothing. Bright lights and earsplitting noise ensue. Thats what typically comes to mind when you picture a rock band, right? Enter The Volunteers, a component of The United States Army Field Band. No, they dont have big hair or glitzy attire, but they can rock the house with more than their fair share of talent. Master Sgt. Kirk Kadish, Sgt. 1st Class April Boucher, Sgt. 1st Class Peter Krasulski, Staff Sgt. Tom Lindsey, Staff Sgt. Gerald Myles and Staff Sgt. Randy Wight have another thing in common besides being musically gifted. These six noncommissioned



k o

officers are active-duty Soldiers. The Volunteers have told the Army story through musicrock, pop, country, rhythm and blues, and patriotic tunessince 1981, and they continue to communicate the Army message as they travel worldwide, performing for enthusiastic concert goers at venues ranging from huge outdoor crowds to hospital bedsides. Kadish, keyboardist and noncommissioned officer in charge, understands the bands impact on the nation. Kadish, a member of the group since 1994, acknowledges, Its remarkable how important it is to so many people that they connect with us.

There is something emotionally vital about what we do that deeply affects many, many people. Good doesnt begin to describe the necessary skills Becoming a member of The Volunteers isnt easy. The process is incredibly competitive. We may receive 50 applicants for one vacancy. From that list, the selection committee might bring in 10 to audition, noted Sgt. 1st Class John Lake, the groups tour coordinator. Candidates chosen to audition, instrumentalists and vocalists alike, must perform with The Volunteers before an appointing panel prior to making the final cut. Even so, holding an audition does not imply anyone will be hired to fill an opening. Lake emphasized, I have witnessed numerous occurrences where no one in the final round was selected. They have to be that good. Kadish chuckled as he lightheartedly recalled his own audition, I managed to make the first cut, although there were some folks who felt I was too much of a jazzer and not enough of a rocker or vocalist to really qualify.




Soldiers August 2009 15

Staff Sgt. Gerald Myles, drums, performed professionally at Walt Disney World and throughout the East Coast before joining the Field Band in 2005. A native of Norwalk, Conn., he has studied jazz at the University of Massachusetts and the University of Hartford. Myles has also taught drumming for high school-marching bands and for inner-city students.

Sgt. 1st Class April Boucher, vocalist, served 11 years in the U.S. Navy with the Pacific Fleet Band in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and the Navy Band Southeast in Jacksonville, Fla. She taught private voice and served as an ear-training instructor for the Naval Sea Cadets and studied private voice for six years with Carol Marty. Boucher has been a featured soloist at various high-profile events, including the film premiere of Pearl Harbor and Jacksonville Jaguars football games.











Fortunately for me, the other players appreciated my instrumental skills and werent much concerned with the dying cat quality of my vocal stylings. Once selected, there is another, minor hurdleenlisting in the Army and conquering basic training. From there, youre assigned to The U.S. Army Field Band, and your career as a performer begins. But, dont expect a life of fame and glory. Not the typical rock-star lifestyle The Volunteers make their way from town to town in two, eight-passenger vans. Often, there are countless miles between gigs. The group has made similar treks hundreds of times, so generalizing the atmosphere while they travel is pretty easy. The journey begins with a little 16 www.army.mil/soldiers

laughter, a little chitchat and a little coffee. Before long, we tend to get a little quiet. Sometimes we find silence soothing. It allows us to reflect, remarked the bands accomplished drummer, Staff Sgt. Gerald Myles. Krasulski, the animated bassist, says that the vast amount of travel is a double-edged sword but, for the most part, enjoys it, for it means seeing new places I never would have had a chance to see if I werent a part of The Volunteers. The group stops periodically for breaks as they roll past all-too-familiar terrain. They stretch, walk around a bit and enjoy the fresh air. But, soon its time to pile back into the van and hit the road again. Travelling makes the hotel arrival that much sweetermost of the time.

Master Sgt. Kirk Kadish, director, keyboard, vocals, and chief arranger, hails from Melvindale, Mich. He entered the Army in 1990 and first served on the faculty of the Armed Forces School of Music in Norfolk, Va., and was assigned to the Field Band in 1994. A freelance composer and arranger, Kadish earned his bachelors degree from the University of Michigan and his masters degree from Towson University.

Sgt. 1st Class Peter Krasulski, bass, joined the Army in 1998. A District of Columbia native, he has served with the 82nd Airbornes All-American Band, the 8th Army Band in Korea, and the 4th Infantry Division Band, with which he was deployed to Iraq. A graduate of St. Petersburg College, Krasulski joined the Field Band in 2005.








It can get a little confusing as we perform in so many places in such a short timeframe. I have wandered into a closet thinking it was the bathroom. And, I have caught myself thinking I am in a completely different town, confessed Boucher, vocalist. Yet it gives us a place to call home, albeit short-lived. The hotel becomes the groups hub, the place where they gear upmentally and physicallyfor the performance. Touring requires an enormous amount of work and energy. Putting on a show involves travel to and from the hotel to the venue, load-in, set-up, sound check, a brief break, the concert itself, tear-down and load-out. The pre- and post-concert phases (load-in, set-up, tear-down and load-out), in particular, are physically demanding.

They each have responsibilities, and they accomplish them with an amazing amount of efficiency. The equipment truck pulls up. The band launches into action like a NASCAR pit crew as they hurriedly roll large, heavy steel boxes from the truck onto the stage. Like kids ripping open birthday presents, they delve into each metal container pulling cables and equipment out. Its a bustle of activity. At the end of the concert, they get to do it all over again, just in reverse. The days can be long and taxing. However, the grueling labor eventually leads to the true bread and butter (for the band, as well as the audience)the performance. Blowing your mind A few minutes before the show,

The Volunteers crack jokes helping the group relax and creating the right moodfun. Making their way onto the stage, they are met with uncontrollable cheering.

Soldiers August 2009 17

Staff Sgt. Thomas Lindsey, guitar and vocals, is originally from Daytona Beach, Fla. Prior to joining the Field Band, he served as guitarist with the 9th Army Band at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, the 3rd Infantry Division Band at Fort Stewart, Ga., and the 76th Army Band in Kaiserslautern, Germany. Lindsey has toured extensively throughout the United States and Europe, performing with musicians such as Charlie Daniels, Martina McBride and The Platters.

Staff Sgt. Randy Wight, vocals, is a native of North Syracuse, N.Y. He joined the Army in 2004 following an extensive career as a solo performer and studio musician. A skilled keyboardist and drummer, Wight is a graduate of Cayuga Community College.

nEe! ! FR


Their performances are intensely delivered and reinforced by an unequivocal amount of pride in what they do. And, what The Volunteers give to the fans is uniquea blend of tunes from different styles, varying genres and multiple generations. Despite the wide variety of music, the message is clear, and it transcends generations. The thing that amazes me is that their performances can have an equally profound effect on a 60-year-old and a 16-year-old, acknowledged Chief Warrant Officer Gordon Kippola, officer in charge of the group. There is universal agreement about the groups ability to appeal to an extensive range of audiences. At first I thought it was going to be some boring band that gave whack music, but I was really impressed! I loved that it reached out to young peo18 www.army.mil/soldiers

ple and older people! You guys rocked! exclaimed Sky Tanco, a Platt High School student in Meriden, Conn. Paige Coles, student council president at St. Clement High School in Medford, Mass., reported, The Volunteers came to my school a few weeks agoyou got everyone out of their seatseven my principal was dancing! Wight, who wows audiences with his incredible imitations of popular artists like Willie Nelson, appreciates the ability to do what he loves (entertaining audiences) and to be able to represent the Army in support of our troops. The newest member of the sextet is Lindsey. Lindsey, known for his awe-inspiring licks on the guitar, truly believes in the bands mission. At the end of the day, he said, its about Soldiers representing Soldiers and sharing the Army story. And we get to do

thatthrough our musicwith people all over the world. vHeather Santos works for the U.S. Army Field Band Public Affairs Office.

TUSAFB Concerts

All Army Field Band concerts are free and open to the public. The Department of the Army pays for the costs for transportation, lodging and meals. Concert sponsors must procure a performance site and manage the concerts publicity campaign, which includes ticket distribution.

www.army.mil/facesofstrengthSGT Matthew SchillingSergeant Matthew Schilling and his patrol were on a reconnaissance operation when their platoon leader was wounded. Surrounded and outnumbered by insurgents, Schilling directed his comrades to set up a perimeter and return fire until the rescue helicopters arrived. When they did arrive, he evacuated the wounded and led the rest of his unit to safety. His exceptional act of leadership earned SGT Schilling not only one of our Nations highest honors, the Silver Star, but also the title of hero from his platoon leader.

Soldiers August here. The Nations strength starts 2009 19

norin Ho g


r ie ld

bStory by Jacqueline M. Hames


USIC, for most people, is a natural and pervasive part of life. Its everywhereon your MP3 player, the radio, or stuck on repeat in your head. It helps express otherwise inexpressible feelings, and serves to calm nerves. Music is also a great way to remember things and can be used as a teaching tool. The JamsBio project from Mouth Watering Media harnesses that emotional and academic power to pay tribute to American servicemembers. Officially launched in March, 20 www.army.mil/soldiers

Honoring the American Soldier on JamsBio collects special stories and dedications of music to share with others, with the goal of honoring American servicemembers, said Matt Williams, project founder and MWM president. The project started during a brainstorming session, Williams explained, that led MWM to a tribute album the band Queensryche was putting together for servicemembers, called American Soldier. The album, which is compiled from interviews with



military personnel, inspired MWM to do a project that involved military members and families telling their stories through music. We know that music has a healing quality, it has an ability to get somebody through hard times, Williams said. He hopes this project will help servicemembers heal and provide strength and hope to them through music. Open to all services and components, Honoring the American Soldier has already received many


ing a mak hile se w o er p pret inter raqi his I and yce Bo Soldier. oug rl D a fallen . Ea Spc orial for mem


Wi th musicsong dedications from both military members and their families. First Sgt. CJ Grisham posted an entry with the song Times Like These by the Foo Fighters to honor the lessons he learned while deployed and to remember the Soldiers he served with. My whole life, as long as I can remember, music has played a huge part in my life, Grisham said. I really, really clung to music as a way to deal with any problem I had or any emotion, whether it was good, bad, happy, sad, whatever. Deployed to Iraq in 2003 as a counter-intelligence special agent, his units job was to find the guys who were planting improvised explosive devices; find the guys who were funding, building and then placing IEDs, killing civilians and targeting U.S. forces, Grisham said. His unit captured eight of the 55 most-wanted insurgents while deployed. (Music) gets you motivated, it calms you down, it gets your mind off the things youve witnessed and done and seen, and it allows us to remember

Cou rtes y of . .com sBio Jam visits ldier A So Spc . Ea rl D oug Bo yce


that were human, Grisham added. Music reminds Soldiers that there are ordinary people back home listening to the same songs, and that they can connect with those people through a shared interest in a song, he explained. While in Iraq, Grishams wife sent him Times Like These because she thought he would like it. The Foo Fighters front man was the former drummer for Nirvana, and Grisham was a Nirvana fan. (The song) really kind of spoke to me because it urges you to keep going,Soldiers August 2009 21

front of a Spc. Earl Doug Boyce poses in Forward mural he designed and painted for Operating Base Warhorse.




Sg f 1st

t. CJ



jas rez, Alva arry L hand they


gt. er, S pret inter his . , and in 2003 q , left ham ujah, Ira Gris ll t. CJ uring Fa t Sg o d 1s while t oun e er ar l gestur il gath dren a goodw chil Iraqi andy in out c

you know? These trying times that we are going through, they really teach you whats important about life, he said. Now, whenever Grisham hears that song, it reminds him of times relaxing after a mission with his unit. I really think that music plays a very integral part in troops lives, especially in a combat environment, because youre constantly on the go and your senses are constantly heightened. And if all you did was come back and sit in your room, youd go crazy, Grisham said. The same is true for civilians, espe22 www.army.mil/soldiers

cially for the spouses of those who are deployed. Joy Boyce, wife of Spc. Earl Doug Boyce, believes she stays connected to her husband through music. Doug, as she calls him, is currently deployed to Iraq and working long hours as a tanker and resident post artist. I feel that our Soldiers need to know, as much as possible, that we are thinking of them at home, Boyce said. JamsBio offers a way to publicly acknowledge the service of loved ones who are deployed. JamsBio helps me to deal with deployment by giving and sharing the

feelings associated with deployment, she added. Boyce and her husband were married in Alaska a mere three weeks before he was deployed. She dedicated Etta James At Last to her husband, because it helps her feel romantically connected to him. My husband took my hand and pulled me to my feet and began to dance with me, Boyce said, recalling when the song played during their honeymoon. He held me close and, of course, dipped me at the end of the song. I began to cry because of the im-

of rtesy Cou


B Joy oyce


es ourt

y of



Do arl




pending deployment and he promised me then there would be many, many more slow dances in the future.I felt so loved and so lucky. Now when I hear At Last, it is everything to meit is my happiness, my sadness, my heart, my love. Doug doesnt post anything to JamsBio because of the long hours he worksany time spent online is used to communicate directly with his wife and other family members through video-chat, he explained. However, Doug was very excited to hear At Last. Thats her dedication to me. It was

pretty nice, he said of the post, adding that the song held special significance other than the association with his honeymoon. When I get home at last well be able to be together. If Doug were to dedicate a song to his wife on JamsBio, he said it would be Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwoole, which was their wedding song. (My wife) sent me a ukulele and I said I was going to learn how to play the song for her. Im horrible at it, he laughed. Either way it will be nice; Im going to play it.

For many servicemembers, music is a way to keep grounded and connected to those they love. JamsBio provides a way to communicate feelings to loved ones that may have remained unexpressed, as well as a public outlet to help better understand the self. Its a really cool project, Doug said. It lets people voice their ideas and feelings and gives people a way to express themselves. Its an outlet. Its very helpful. v Check out more song dedications at http://jamsbio.com/american-soldier.Soldiers August 2009 23


Courtesy of Spc. Earl Doug Boyc e

in hile ed w rials signl memo e de a ue h ever plaq ed s orials design em s a m nd ha mble ist a asse ost art oyce p g Bresident Dou arl e is the iers. .E Spc . Boyc w Sold Iraq is fello to h


ose ce, pHill. Boy ug op Birch o rl D a, at k . Ea Spc Alas and, wright, usb in her h t Wa and t For yce icture a Bo Joy ding p wed

for a

OnPointThe Army in Action

www.army.mil/soldiers 24 www.army.mil/publications


A Soldier assisgned to the 28th Combat Support Hospital at Fort Bragg, N.C., leaps from the ramp of a C-130 aircraft during an airborne operation on Sicily Drop Zone, D-Day 2009. Approximately 60 Soldiers participated in the jump . Photo by Sgt. Maj. Kelly C. Luster Soldiers April 2009 25 August 2009

army newsHE Human Terrain System studies cultural perceptions by attaching anthropological research teams to combat units in Iraq and Afghanistan. There are currently 21 teams in country, one for each brigade, division and corps. On every team we have social scientists who are formally trained researchers, said Dr. Rubye Braye, a social scientist and retired lieutenant colonel. Team membersobtain the perceptions of the Iraqi people on key issues to better understand their needs and requirements. Braye recently spoke on behalf of Iraqi workers who worked on Contingency Operating Base Basra, and had to enter the gate through a narrow path lined with concertina wire. The employees were concerned someone


could fall onto the wire, and felt the path was for criminals. Braye met with 34th Infantry Division leadership to discuss alternative security measures. Through surveys and face-to-face interaction, HTS scientists ask locals questions like, Are you scared to vote in the elections? Do you trust the Iraqi police? Are there any disputes in your village? What can coalition forces do for you? Often considered the location of the biblical Garden of Eden, the fertile marshes of southern Iraq were once the breadbasket of the Middle East. Saddam Hussein destroyed the marshes after the first Gulf War. Once twice the size of the Florida Everglades, they are now a fraction of their former size, and HTS scientists advised 34th Inf. Div. leadership of their future potential.

Dr. Michael Izady Members of the Marsh Arab tribe traverse the marshes of southern Iraq. Once twice the size of the Florida Everglades, the marshes are now a fraction of their former size after their drainage by Saddam Hussein. Human Terrain System anthropologists advocate restoring the marshes.

army deploys scientists to study Iraqi culture

Restoring the marshes will bring back the local economy and stop arms smuggling, said Leslie Kayanan, an HTS team leader assigned to the 34th Inf. Div., who explained the third-order effect would be the goodwill generated by the government of Iraq working to restore an area ravaged by the old regime. v Pfc. J.P. Lawrence/Multi-National Division-South Public Affairs Office

Cash bonus to replace stop-loss for deploying Guard soldiers

Crisis intervention resources


new program that provides special pay for Soldiers deploying past their end-of-service dates is set to take effect Sept. 1 for the National Guard. The Deployment Extension Stabilization Pay program replaces the stoploss program and pays a cash bonus of up to $6,000 to Soldiers in units set to deploy who elect to stay in past their end-of-service date in order to deploy, said Col. Marianne Watson, Army National Guard personnel officer. The bonus is not a lump-sum payment and the amount of the incentive depends upon when Soldiers decide to extend their enlistment contract. If Soldiers agree to extend 180 to 365 days before the mobilization date, they will receive $500 each month on active duty, but, that rate drops to $350 a month for those who extend between 90 and 179 days. Soldiers who elect to take advan26 www.army.mil/soldiers

tage of this program would have their enlistment contracts extended for the length of the deployment plus 90 days, said Watson. However, in order to qualify for the incentive pay, Soldiers must make it through readiness processing at the mobilization station. Those Soldiers who have enlistment contracts that expire during the deployment and who choose not to extend may still have to deploy. Anybody with a contract expiration date of mobilization-day-plusone-year, were taking to theater, said Watson. But Soldiers may rotate out of theater up to three months early if need be in order to have them take part in the 30-, 60- and 90-day reintegration programs prior to the end of their term of service. v Staff Sgt. Jon Soucy/National Guard Bureau


OLDIERS, Army civilians and their families in need of crisis intervention now have two resources, staffed around the clock: Military OneSource and the Defense Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury. The Military OneSource professionally trained consultants assess callers needs and refer them to health care professionals. The Military OneSource toll-free number for the continental U.S. is 1-800-342-9647, and its Web site is www.militaryonesource.com. Overseas personnel should refer to the Web site for dialing instructions for their specific location. The DCOE Outreach Center provides the latest information on psychological health and TBI issues. It can be contacted at 1-866-966-1020, [email protected] and www.dcoe. health.mil/resources.aspx. v

From the Army News Service and Other Sources

Humvee still made in americaSpc. Kiyoshi C. Freeman

This Humvee prepares for a convoy mission inside the yard at Convoy Support Center Scania, Iraq.

HE militarys High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle, also known as a HMMWV or Humvee, will continue to be made in the United States, by an American-owned company. The recent announcement that Detroit-based General Motors will sell their Hummer brand of vehicles to Chinese-based Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Company, has no bearing on the U.S. militarys Humvee. Humvee manufacturer AM General is an American company based in South Bend, Ind. The company produced the


first 55,000 Humvees for the Army in 1985. It continues to produce the Humvee for the military. In the early 1990s, AM General began producing a civilian version of the Humvee, calling it a Hummer. But by the late 1990s, AM General had sold the Hummer name to General Motors. While GM will sell the Hummer nameplate to Sichuan Tengzhong, the militarys Humvee, its designs, unique performance capabilities and technologies will continue to be owned by and the vehicle produced by AM General. v C. Todd Lopez/ARNEWS

Pets of Patriots program ensures care of soldiers pets


HEN Soldiers deploy, they often leave behind loving family members, including small furry ones. To alleviate some of the concerns Soldiers have regarding their pets care, the Hawaiian Humane Society offers the Pets of Patriots program, helping match volunteers to animals and owners, providing a temporary home for pets of deploying Soldiers. Domestic short hair cats, Fancy and Jambo, have adjusted nicely since their owner, Staff Sgt. Roxanne Pratt, deployed. They strut through the living room of Bianca Trombi, outreach programs coordinator, Hawaiian Humane Society, stopping in front of their foster mom for a quick pat on the head. The Pets of Patriots Program allows a single and solitary Soldier like myself the joy of being able to raise animals without the pain and fear of having to give away a beloved pet at every deployment, said Pratt. All active-duty military members who have pets that need temporary care are eligible for Pets of Patriots. Foster homes can be military or civilian. Some foster families even provide emails and photos for Soldiers overseas to help them cope with being far away from home.

The owner, according to Anne Marie MacPherson, community relations coordinator at the Hawaiian Humane Society, usually handles the pets financial needs, and both parties should agree upon all financial responsibilities prior to deployment. Meeting the volunteer and allowing a pet and the foster family to spend time together before deployment is also recommended.Molly Hayden

We Soldiers lose a great deal every time we leave and come back changed every time, said Pratt. Programs such as Pets of Patriots help to whittle the stack of unsettling events surrounding deployments down to a bare minimum and let us concentrate on the business at hand. v Molly Hayden/U.S. Army GarrisonHawaii Public Affairs

Foster mom Bianca Trombi, outreach programs coordinator, Hawaiian Humane Society, lounges on the floor with Jambo. Trombi is fostering Jambo, along with his sister Fancy, while Staff Sgt. Roxanne Pratt is deployed. Through the Pets of Patriots Program, the Humane Society assists deploying Soldiers in finding temporary homes for their pets.

Soldiers August 2009 27

Protecting SoldiersPost-Deployment Health Reassessment

healthSStory by Army PDHRA Program TeamTAFF Sgt. Les Newport returned from a nine-month deployment to Iraq in November 2008. While I had been in the Army for 27 years, nothing prepares you for what you may witness during a deployment. You push your health concerns aside as you are excited to reunite with family and loved ones, said Newport, who belongs to the 76th Infantry Brigade Combat Team with the Indiana National Guard. He completed the Post-Deployment Health Reassessment four months after he returned from Iraq. The PDHRA was very helpful for 28 www.army.mil/soldiers

Combat tours

me. I knew I had a banged up knee and was relieved to be referred to a specialist for tests, and eventually, treatment.

What is PDHRA?More than 483,000 Soldiers have been screened by the PDHRA since the summer of 2005. The PDHRA program is part of the Department of Defenses overall Force Health Protection Program, and is a global health initiative based on solid research. Soldiers and civilians back from a combat zone for 90 days or more are eligible for the three-part screening. Soldiers who redeployed after

March10, 2005, are required to complete the PDHRA. The PDHRA proactively screens for potential health issues. The program also focuses on identification of treatment so Soldiers and civilians can retain a healthy balance in spite of the multiple stresses associated with a deployment. Soldiers want to spend time with their families when they return home. But, its important for Soldiers to address their medical needs before they become serious, said Col. Shirley Kyles, PDHRA program administrator for the Armys active component. By conducting the PDHRA within 90 to

Coming home

Soldiers want to spend time with their family when they return home. But, its important for Soldiers to address their medical needs before they become serious. Col. Shirley Kylestransition back to home life is sometimes difficult. We understand Soldiers may be reluctant to seek help for issues. The PDHRA bypasses this stigma by bringing the medical system directly to the Soldier, said Kyles. The PDHRA consists of viewing Battlemind II training, completing a health care form (DD Form 2900), which includes questions for both behavioral and physical health concerns, and speaking one-on-one with a health care provider. Battlemind II Training, developed by the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, includes vignettes that help Soldiers relate combat experiences to feelings they may encounter after deployment. The training also emphasizes safe and healthy personal relationships and teaches Soldiers to look out for each others health. We educate Soldiers to look out for their buddies. We teach Soldiers to recognize symptoms such as erratic behaviors in their buddies, and we train Soldiers how to get help for their buddies, said Kyles.

180 days after a Soldier returns from a deployment, we can potentially identify and alleviate some of the stress associated with a combat deployment. According to Newport, it is important for Soldiers to recognize their symptoms, be open to receiving medical attention and be an active participant in their treatment. It takes real courage for Soldiers to seek help. The PDHRA allows Soldiers to address issues and get plugged into resources such as VA benefits, said Newport.

How does the screening work?Research shows us that a Soldiers

A commanders programIn most cases, commanders inform Soldiers when it is time to beginSoldiers August 2009 29

Encourage your Soldier to seek professional advice for health concerns. Lt. Col. Sophia Tillman-Ortiz

Taking the PDHRAthe PDHRA process. Soldiers can complete the screening by attending a unit-scheduled screening event, making an appointment at their local medical treatment facility, or through the PDHRA call center. It is important to note that the PDHRA is a commanders program, said PDHRA program manager, Lt. Col. Sophia Tillman-Ortiz. To ensure a smooth transition, commanders must understand the PDHRA program and help facilitate the screening process. According to Tillman-Ortiz, Soldiers need to know about the services and benefits available to them, both 30 www.army.mil/soldiers from the Army and the Department of Veterans Affairs. The PDHRA is an opportunity for Soldiers to discuss, in a safe environment, issues that may be bothering them once they return home. It is important to understand that if you or your loved one recognize any health-related issues that may need to be addressed, you dont need to wait for the PDHRA. Encourage your Soldier to seek professional advice for health concerns. For more information about the PDHRA program, Soldiers, civilians and family members can visit http:// fhp.osd.mil/pdhrainfo or www.armyg1. army.mil. Soldiers and commanders can check their PDHRA status at Army Knowledge Online under My Medical Readiness, or by clicking on the PDHRA stoplight on their AKO page. v

Post-deployment supportThe Army recognizes that family and friends play a vital role in a Soldiers transition back to home life. The Army encourages loved ones to take part in the process by reminding their Soldiers to complete the screening beginning 90 days after they return home, said Tillman-Ortiz.

Army FAmILy COVENANT:Keeping the PromiseFor us, the Army Family Covenant means the Army stays strong by keeping the Family Strong.INGRID MURRAY, U.S. Army Spouse Serving Together, Nine Years

Its about honoring our commitment to Soldiers and Families.Visit ArmyOneSource.com to see what the Army Family Covenant can mean for you or Soldiers August 2009 31 someone you know.

catch flat track fever !Story by Jacqueline M. Hames


32 www.army.mil/soldiers

Gun'Her Down reaches back for her jammer during a bout with the DC Demoncats.

James Calder

OLLER derby is an Americaninvented team sport based on formation skating around an oval track, which can be flat or banked. Played mostly by women, roller derby is an organized, if rough, sport where showmanship is a must (cue flame print knee socks). The derby is a bit of an underdog sport, only recently regaining popularity. Grassroots leagues have popped up around the nation and are gaining a small yet fiercely loyal following. The DC Rollergirls, part of the Womens Flat Track Derby Association, was founded in 2006, and now consists of four teams: Cherry Blossom Bombshells, Scare Force One, DC DemonCats, and the Secretaries of Hate, according to the leagues Web site. The league is based in Washington, D.C., and holds scrimmages regularly at the D.C. Armory. Among the ranks of the fishnet-clad Rollergirls are two Soldiersone activated Reserve major, Melissa Mitravich, and one former Soldier, Diana Dawa. Currently, the DC Rollergirls have many Army fans, including wounded


warriors and co-workers, who come to support their favorite teams. Mitravich said at least one group of wounded Soldiers attends every bout, and the league reserves a special section for them close to the action. Some bouts have upwards of 1,600 spectators, but more are always welcome. Its the community support that helps keep the league finances in orderas a non-profit organization, the Rollergirls rely on volunteers and ticket sales to help run and fund matches. We really need people to come watch roller derby! said Dawa, laughing. On the track, Dawa and Mitravich skate hard and yell profanities with the rest of the pack. Off the track, they are good-humored, easy-going women with a passion for the roller derby that is only matched by their commitment to the Army. Mitravich enlisted in the Army in 1987. After her transfer to the Reserve, she was commissioned in 1996 and is now both a registered nurse and a family nurse practitioner.She is currently assigned to the Department of the

HOOAH!GIRLArmy Mobilization Division as a mobilization common operating picture combat developer. I deal with requirements and conceptsI am the government oversight for software application that deals with


Hooah!Girl blocks opposing jammer Dr. Skabs with help from ShREDica.

Jacqueline Hames

James Calder (Inset) Diana Dawa laughs at a fellow DemonCats antics during a break from a scrimmage with Scare Force One, Feb. 17.

Soldiers August 2009 33

VGUNHER DOWNall Army Reservists that are mobilized, Mitravich explained. Sporting a tattoo on one ankle and using the nickname GunHer Down, the job description comes as somewhat of a surprise. However, Mitravich explains there are all kinds of women in the derby: zookeepers, teachers, Soldiers and chief executive officers among them. If you love sports, if you love contact, adrenaline rushthis is a sport any woman can do, she said. When I go into the Army and I get to do my job, especially in the medical field, whether I am ER or I am working on the floor, for me its a rush. I love my job, I love dealing with Soldiers despite their injuries, Mitravich said. It makes me feel good and its always a challenge. Ive been really lucky that my Army family has really supported me in this, she added. Most of them are here watching the bouts. Two years ago, Mitravich watched a match with a friend and discovered that rush of adrenaline anewon skates. She was not able to join immediately because she was mobilized, but once in the Washington area, another friend introduced her to the Rollergirls. She was drafted onto Scare Force One in October 2008 and has been loving derby ever since. Its one of those things where you can actually hit somebody and know

youre not going to get arrested. I mean its awesome! Mitravich joked. During a bout, the women skate around the track and slam into one another like runaway bumper cars, though there is no hair pulling, biting or elbowing as some movies would have us believe. That would lead to a penalty. Each team has five skaters on the track: three blockers, one pivot and one jammer. Positions are designated by helmet covers, and any player can play any position. Jammers have starred covers, pivots have striped, and blockers are coverless. Pivots and blockers form the pack, the main force of the game, and jammers trail 20 feet behind to start. Pivots set the pace of the pack, Mitravich explained, while jammers score points by lapping the pack. Blockers prevent the opposing teams jammers from getting through the packusing hip checks and shoulder bumpsand help their own jammers get through. The goal is to score the highest amount of points over a 30-minute period, which is broken into two-minute intervals,

called jams. I really enjoy the flat track because I think it adds a little bit more of a familiar and personal level to it. The audience is allowed to sit 10 feet from the track when the action is going on, Dawa said. Its an especially personal experience when Dawa sends an opposing team member staggering into the audiencean event that gives her a rush. Dawa, known as Hooah!Girlon the DC DemonCats, had an affair with derby at an early age, watching it on Saturday mornings when she was young. As an adult she was introduced to derby through a friend who is on the team with her now. After going to a league meeting, she was hooked. My favorite moments are the athleticism, working out, being able to go really fast on the track and actually hitting people and not having to apologize for that. Everybody here is very aggressive, some more so than others, Dawa said. Dawa enlisted in the Army immediately after high school graduation and eventually became a combat cam-

Maj. Melissa Mitravich, also known as GunHer Down, hashes out player positions with a member of Scare Force One before a scrimmage at the D.C. Armory, Feb. 17.

34 www.army.mil/soldiers

Jacqueline Hames

eraman in Korea, then a broadcaster in Germany. After leaving the military in 1992, she became an Army civilian. She returned to the U.S. Army in 2002 and is currently a public affairs specialist with the Army Materiel Command. Her derby nickname is a tribute to the experience and education she received in the Army. The Army literally saved my life. I just wanted to give something back. Its my own little way of making people say Hooah without knowing what they are saying, Dawa said with a grin. The Army has some similarities to roller derby that help make these women feel right at home on the track. Among them, Dawa and Mitravich agree, is a strong sense of sisterhood. Mitravich describes the league as a second family. Everybody helps everybody else, Dawa added. Roller derby is very organized like the Army, Dawa explained. The league has committees and many leadership positions, lending it a military air. A lot of the organizational structure that was in the military that appealed to me

is also in roller derby, which really appeals to me as well, Dawa said. Getting on the track and skating a bout can be likened to a combat mindset, though Mitravich emphasizes that combat missions and derby bouts cannot be directly compared. She explained that skaters need an overall awareness of the track, the referees, and the position of all the skaters, similar to a Soldiers awareness of his or her surroundings in the field. Soldiers have a general plan and expectations for the mission, Mitravich said, but have to be able to adapt to unforeseen circumstances. Derby skaters need the same mental agility, or pack awareness, in order to perform well on the track. This is by far the hardest sport I have ever played in my life because it requires an offense-defense mind at the same time, Mitravich said. Both Dawa and Mitravich hope that the Army may put together its own derby team in the future, including both male and female athletes. I think its the right kind of atmosphere that promotes empowerment,

and promotes leadership skills, so I think it would be perfect, Dawa said. For more information on the DC Rollergirls, visit www.dcrollergirls.com. v

Jammers, GunHer Down and Blonde Fury race off the jam line.

Hooah!Girl leads the DC DemonCat line-up.

James Calder

James Calder

Soldiers August 2009 35

In the shadow of a mighty presenceStory by Elizabeth M. Collins

legacy) family (Ahe was surprised to find that the answer was yes. It was a huge surprise, the Arizona National Guard Soldier said. I had this long family lineage that I didnt really even know about. I got my dad to kind of open up about a lot of the family traditions of military service. Its something that Ive always kind of had as motivation in my own heart that Ive had this many who have served in my family. It provides unique inspiration and pride. Chamberlain isnt sure how many greats there are between him and the general, but he said he is a direct descendant, and that his familys legacy of service stretches even further back, to the Revolutionary War. In fact, Chamberlain has had a relative in almost every American conflict for the past

Little Round Top, Gettysburg, Pa., 1863.


IRST Lt. Dennis Chamberlain always knew that he wanted to join the Army and carry on his familys legacy of military servicehe just didnt know quite how long or how famous that family legacy was. You may be wondering, Chamberlain? Famous? Does she mean the Chamberlain? Brevet Maj. Gen. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain of Civil War fame? That Chamberlain? (Brevet signifies an officer who has been authorized a temporary, higher rank, usually without higher pay.) Chamberlain was asked these questions over and over again during Officer Candidate School, and when he finally broke down and asked his father, a Vietnam veteran, if they were related to the Medal of Honor winner,

230-plus years. Im Lieutenant Dan, he quipped about the Forrest Gump character who had ancestors in every war. Of course, they all died, while most of Chamberlains relatives lived. One of his mothers ancestors, Jacob Snider, was a surveyor with George Washington just prior to the Revolution, and after the war began, accepted a commission in the Continental Army. Chamberlain didnt mention them, but according to Michael Golays To Gettysburg and Beyond: The Parallel Lives of Joshua Chamberlain and Edward Porter Alexander, Joshua Chamberlain also had great-grandfathers who served in the Revolutionone of them was at the Battle of Yorktownand a grandfather who was a militia colonel during the War of 1812. Joshuas father also served during the Aroostook War

(Right) 1st Lt. Dennis Chamberlain poses with Soldiers participating in the 2009 U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas.

(Right three photos) 1st Lt. Dennis Chamberlain and his wife, Jennifer, now a private first class and X-ray technician in the Reserves.

Note: All non-historic photos courtesy of 1st Lt. Dennis Chamberlain. All historic photos courtesy of the Library of Congress unless otherwise noted.

36 www.army.mil/soldiers

In great deeds something abides. On great fields something stays. Forms change and pass; bodies disappear, but spirits linger, to consecrate ground for the vision-place of souls. And reverent men and women from afar, and generations that know us not and that we know not of, heart-drawn to see where and by whom great things were suffered and done for them, shall come to this deathless field to ponder and dream; And lo! the shadow of a mighty presence shall wrap them in its bosom, and the power of the vision pass into their souls.Brevet Maj. Gen. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, speaking at the dedication of the monument to the 20th Maine, Oct. 3, 1889, Gettysburg, Pa.Brevet Maj. Gen. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain

in 1839, which was essentially a cold war between the U.S. and Great Britain over the Maine-Canada border. The generals brothers served in the Civil War as well. Another of Chamberlains distant grandfathers was killed during World War I after volunteering for a highrisk mission to carry intelligence back from the trenches. Chamberlains great-grandfather and grandfather were both in the Navy, and his grandfather, Dwight Lawrence Chamberlain II, was permanently injured during one of the USS Yorktowns World War II battles. Various other great-uncles and uncles served during the Korean and Vietnam Wars. His father was in basic training during the Cuban Missile Crisis. That training suddenly sped up during the standoff, and his father

eventually deployed to Vietnam. Chamberlain said his fathers experiences in Vietnam made him concerned for his son when Chamberlain enlisted on the first day he was eligible at age 17. One of Chamberlains brothers had died as a child, and his father was naturally worried. I dont think he wanted (war) to change me. War inevitably changes you. He was just worried how it was going to affect me, and also worried about me coming home, because in the infantry we tend to be placed in dangerous situations. Your parents just worry about you and want to make sure you come home, Chamberlain explained. Chamberlains wife, Jennifer, is a private first class in the Army Reserve. During his 2007 deployment to Af-

ghanistan, he said Jennifer decided to go back to school to become an X-ray technician. It turned out that there was a long waiting list for school, but the Army had an expedited program. I thought, Why in the world would she want to be a Soldier? said Chamberlain. Shes seen me go through everything from kinetic operations and combat to the missed birthdays and anniversaries. I just never thought that that was something that she would want to pursue. She talked with me about the advantages and disadvantages and it seemed like it was a viable plan. God knows that shes supported me through thick and thin, and I thought it was my turn to support her. The Chamberlains have three young daughters, and are concerned

Soldiers August 2009 37

Battle of Gettysburg

Currier and Ives Little Round Top, Gettysburg, Pa., 1863.

they might eventually have to deploy at the same time. Fortunately, Chamberlains parents are very involved in their lives and available to help out. That came in handy in 2007 after Chamberlain left for Afghanistan, and his wife heard he received some minor injuries during a clearing operation. His convoy came under fire and a rocket-propelled grenade exploded nearby, injuring Chamberlain and two of his Soldiers. He eventually received the Purple Heart, but the injuries were minor enough that they patched themselves up and continued with the mission. On another occasion, Chamberlain and his men had to come to the rescue of some dignitaries with familiar names: Sens. John Kerry and Chuck Hagel, and then-Sen. Joe Biden. Chamberlains unit had been providing security for provincial reconstruction teams and special operations, and received an emergency call that Maj. Gen. David Rodriguez, commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, was stranded in the mountains. When they met up with an 11-vehicle Secret Service convoy, Chamberlain figured something was up, but it wasnt until he was en route that he

found out three senators were stuck in a bad blizzard with some insurgents nearby. We linked up with them and got security in place, he said. From there, I pushed out the Secret Service vehicles and one of my heavy squads to provide security for them heading down the mountain. Some insurgents came up on them and we got them out of there and from there to Turkey. The mission was an entry on his Bronze Star citation, and although it has garnered Chamberlain some attention, he cautions that it was just one mission among many and he was only one man on that mission. I was just one person in a great group of guys who made me look good, he said. It was their individual actions that brought us together as a team, that made us such a great fighting force. It was a National Guard infantry called on to rescue some of probably the most important people on the ground in Afghanistan. It was our team who was called on to do great things, more than just rescuing the senators and the vice president. But in times of stress and high optempo, Chamberlain said that he does sometimes think about what Joshua

Chamberlain or some of his other forefathers would do. Weve had a few books that have been written by family members that Ive read, and biographies and stuff, he said. I actually think I have a lot of the same characteristics. Especially General Chamberlain. He was written about a lota very aggressive, charismatic leader. Ive been accused of being very aggressive. In my own defense, I think my aggressiveness is one of the major reasons that I was able to bring all my guys home alive, he explained. They put the enemy on their heels. And I have to say, his aggressiveness in Gettysburg was absolutely pivotal in the momentum of that battle. I would say sometimes I think about it, but most of the time, you just react on your training and what youve learned all through the schools youve gone to in the military and your lifes lessons growing up. Thats what you bank on in the heat of the battle. All three of Chamberlains daughters are under age 10too young to understand their family history just yet. But when theyre older, Chamberlain said he plans to make sure they know about their famous ancestor and the familys legacy of service. v

1st Lt. Dennis Chamberlain watches an air-support helicopter approach during his deployment to Afghanistan.

1st Lt. Dennis Chamberlain and his wife, Jennifer, now a private first class in the Reserves, and their daughters, left to right, Cami, Chloe and Kaci.

38 www.army.mil/soldiers

Who was Joshua Chamberlain?


ORN in 1828, Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was a professor at Bowdoin College in Maine when the Civil War began in 1861. Granted a sabbatical, he enlisted in the 20th Maine Regiment, where, although he had no previous military experience, Chamberlain was commissioned as a lieutenant colonel. Held in reserve during the Battle of Antietam, Md., in 1862, Chamberlain and his unit saw their first action at the Battle of Fredericksburg, Va., and spent a freezing night in the open with wounded Soldiers, using bodies of the fallen for shelter. It was a cold night, he wrote in his autobiography. Bitter, raw north winds swept the stark slopesNecessity compels strange uses. For myself, it seemed best to bestow my body between two dead men among the many left there by earlier assaults, and to draw another crosswise for a pillow out of the trampled, blood-soaked sod, pulling the flap of his coat over my face to fend off the chilling winds, and, still more chilling, the deep, many-voiced moan that overspread the field. It was heart-rending. Chamberlain was promoted to colonel of the regiment in 1863, and it was that July that his famous charge took place at the Battle of Gettysburg, Pa., the bloodiest battle of the war with more than 50,000 casualties. Sent to defend Little Round Top both the high ground and the location of a Union signal stationthe 20th Maine was at the far left of the Union line. They endured numerous charges from the Confederates until their line almost doubled back on itself and ammunition almost ran out. Casualties were heavy. Chamberlain ordered his men to fix bayonets and charge toward the Confederates. The left wing wheeled back and forth to both flank and assault the enemy. One word was enough

BAYONET!It caught like fire and swept along the ranks, Chamberlain recalled. The grating clash of steel in fixing bayonets told its own story; the color rose in front; the whole line quivered for the start; the edge of the left-wing rippled, swung, tossed among the rocks, straightened, changed curve from scimitar to sickle-shape; and the bristling archers swooped down upon the serried hostdown into the face of half a thousand! Two hundred men! Ranks were broken; many retired before us somewhat hastily; some threw

their muskets to the groundeven loaded; sunk on their knees threw up their hands, calling out, We surrender. Dont kill us! As if we wanted to do that! We kill to resist killing. Chamberlains men captured so many Confederates that they were outnumbered two to one and the Union eventually carried the day. Chamberlain received the sobriquet Lion of the Round Top and later, the Medal of Honor. The following June, during the siege of Petersburg, Va., Chamberlain was shot in the right hip and groin. Before passing out, he jabbed his sword into the ground and held on to keep

himself upright for several minutes to discourage calls for retreat. Army surgeons believed it was a mortal wound and Chamberlains death was reported in Maine newspapers and to Lt. Gen. Ulysses S. Grant, who promoted Chamberlain posthumously, or so he believed, to brigadier general. Given an early version of a catheter, Chamberlain lived, but faced infections and revision surgeries for the rest of his life, and eventually died from complications of the wound in 1914. Nevertheless, he returned to duty about five months later in November 1864. In March 1865, his new unit, the 1st Brigade of the 1st Division of V Corps, participated in a major skirmish during Grants final advance in Virginia. Chamberlain was almost captured and was brevetted to the rank of major general. A few days later, on April 12, 1865, he was given the honor of presiding over the parade of Confederate infantry during their surrender at Appomattox Court House, Va. As the vanquished enemy marched down the road, Chamberlain honored their bravery by ordering his men to shoulder their arms, and salute them. This was the last scene of such momentous history that I was impelled to render some token of recognition; some honor also to manhood so high, Chamberlain later recalled. The Confederate Gen. John Gordon rose in his saddle and returned the salute. After the war, Chamberlain served as governor of Maine, and later as the president of his alma mater and former employer, Bowdoin College. Despite old age and ill health, he tried to reenlist during the Spanish-American War in 1898, but was rejected for duty. Editors note: Information for the above biography comes from Bayonet! Forward: My Civil War Reminiscences, by Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain and Joshua Chamberlain: A Heros Life & Legacy, by John J. Pullen. v

Soldiers August 2009 39

A time of warStory by Sandy AtesCourtesy of Charles W. Eubanks

We boys knew we were gonna fight!

Pvt. Charles W. Eubanks stands beside his jeep while serving in Germany during World War II.


HARLES William Eubanks, a resident of West Point, Miss., wants to be rememberednot as a hero, but as a survivor of D-Day. Forget about what you saw on Saving Private Ryan, the film footage shown at Omaha Beach was taken from an airplane, said the 86-year-old World War II Army veteran. It was much worse from our level. The Nazis totally had us pinned down in the sandall the while, blood, human flesh, body parts and metal were raining down on our Soldiers lucky enough to be alive. We were on our bellies from the time we left the (PT) boats until the time we finally took our objective. Eubanks, a native of Troy, Miss., is a decorated Army veteran who survived both the Normandy invasion and Battle of the Bulge. 40 www.army.mil/soldiers

I survived because of two things, he explained, Divine intervention and the training at Camp Van Dorn. That is why I am a survivor of the worst battle that theres ever been. If we hadnt been successful June 6, 1944, Americans would be speaking German right now. He remembers all too well that others were not so lucky on June 6, 1944. A junior in high school when Pearl Harbor was bombed, Eubanks recalled how he and friends talked about the war. We boys knew we were going to fight, he said. But we had discussions among ourselves as to whether we were going to fight for our country, for the politicians or for the flag. But everybody knew we would fightthe world was in turmoil. Eubanks would not

join the Army until September 1943, at the age of 20. In the fall of 1943, he said, I went to a training school in Tupelo and was trained for factory work. I then went to Bristol, Conn., and worked for $325 a month as a copper plater more money than a country boy ever had. By then, the recruiting offices had closed and everyone, inclu