Postal platoon Soldiers deliver themselves home
August 17, 2009
STUTTGART, Germany -- For 15 months, 17 Soldiers from 3rd Platoon, 566th Postal Company, delivered thousands of pounds of mail through three different Army Post Offices in the region of Baghdad, Iraq. However, their last delivery may be their most memorable, as it was the one that brought them back to Stuttgart on July 29.
Family, friends and fellow Soldiers welcomed back the platoon members as they filed into the Panzer Kaserne Fitness Center, bringing an end to a deployment that began back in May 2008.
Aca,!A"As a group, you did an amazing job of moving mail in a very tough environment. You handled more than 20,000 pounds of mail during the holiday season alone,Aca,!A? said Maj. Nicole Heumphreus, 29th Transportation Battalion commander, as she addressed the returning Soldiers. Aca,!A"Reintegration can be simple, but take your time to reintegrate back with family and friends, and then take care of each other as you go through the process.Aca,!A?
Downrange, the 3rd Platoon Soldiers provided postal services at Forward Operation Base Falcon, Union III and Camp Liberty. If Soldiers could not get to their APOs, the postal Soldiers delivered the mail to them by way of helicopter, fixed wing aircraft, vehicle convoy and even shuttle bus.
Aca,!A"It was a long deployment, to say the least, but our jobs kept us busy all the time,Aca,!A? said Sgt. Daryl Thompson. Aca,!A"And a fringe benefit to our job downrange is that youAca,!a,,cre everyoneAca,!a,,cs friend when you have mail in your arms.Aca,!A?
However, on July 29, the only things Thompson wanted in his arms were his wife, Ines, and their two-year-old son, Jaden.
Aca,!A"Getting that first hug and kiss from him was total disbelief that turned into total happiness,Aca,!A? said Ines. Aca,!A"It was like all the worries I had during his entire deployment were released, and I could actually breathe again.Aca,!A?
As the platoon melted into the sea of friends and family, they knew that everything would change once again, since the 566th no longer existed.
Aca,!A"We are the last remaining Soldiers of the once proud 566th Postal Company,Aca,!A? said Sgt. 1st Class Rowena Warshawsky, platoon sergeant for 3rd Platoon, who participated in the companyAca,!a,,cs deactivation ceremony Aug. 5 in Mannheim. Aca,!A"Some of us will retire from the Army, some will ETS and the others will PCS to different units, but we will all remember our 15-month deployment with the 3/566th.Aca,!A?