PRESIDIO OF MONTEREY, Calif. -- Soldiers from the 229th Military Intelligence Battalion who couldn't go home this holiday season found ways to stay in touch with their families and celebrate with their new Army Family Dec. 25, here.

Company C, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion First Sergeant Michael Dochterman and his family brought Christmas dinner to new Individual Entry Trainees who stayed over the holiday.

"I wanted to give them a home cooked meal since they had to be here this Christmas," said Dochterman.

Most of the Soldiers are recent graduates of Basic Combat Training and do not have enough leave to take to visit their families this year for the holidays.

"I had flag duty," said Pfc. Justin Klinkerman, Company F, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion, of the daily ritual of raising and lowering of the Colors.

For Klinkerman, the separation is not something uncommon to him as he belongs to a military family that has a sister in his home state of Colorado, a brother (also in the Army) in Hawaii, and parents and little sister in South Korea.

Klinkerman spent his Christmas talking with his family via an internet video-conferencing service.

"It's 5 a.m. in Korea the day after Christmas," Klinkerman said as he spoke to his step-father, Sgt. 1st Class Joseph Little, mother Ci Gi and sister Alyssa.

"This is normal for me, usually my dad would be away (on deployment)," he said.

Klinkerman was inspired to join the Army because of his father and understood the sacrifices he had to endure, such as being away from family.

"There are so many things to learn in the Army," Klinkerman said. "It sucks being away, but it's something you get used to."

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16