In case you didn't know, Madigan Healthcare System is ramping up to be really busy this summer.

This includes the return of all the Soldiers from deployments and the largest held-to-date Warrior Forge - that is, ROTC advance camp for all you gray-hairs out there.

This is where rising senior-year college students, ah cadets, descend upon Joint Base Lewis-McChord seeking to successfully complete the six-week course in order to become eligible for a commission as an officer in the U.S. Army. Oh and let's not forget the usual summer rotations for our green-suited teammates.

We know that we have the three Stryker Brigades returning home, plus other units - 18,000 Soldiers in all coming home. This is the largest return of Soldiers from war since Vietnam. One brigade in particular will get added attention upon return. That is the 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division Strykers, the one deployed to Afghanistan and the one that took the most casualties of any deployed JBLM unit this deployment cycle.

All the units returning home are important as we do our holistic medical reintegration mission. Part of this reintegration is the behavioral health element. Efforts are underway and continue to be worked to ensure adequate and timely behavioral health services are available for our returning Soldiers and their Families.

As I ponder this very busy and challenging summer, Madigan is already in high gear working to make mission with the hectic months ahead. This is what I am so awestruck about. What we do. How we do it. 18,000 Soldiers - no problem. 6,000 plus cadets - no worries. Summer rotations - it's all good.

Madigan gate construction, Jackson Avenue repaving, added traffic congestion, WTB construction, parking woes - forget about it. Madigan takes it all in stride and gets the job done. It's what we do.

I look at all the things we do with a child-like wonder and marvel at the accomplishment, the excellence and the "aw shucks ma'am, it was nothing" attitude that drives Madigan to the highest levels of excellence.

Also, let's not forget about our day-to-day work, tasks and mission as we provide quality care, teach, train, research and engage our community, which is just part of taking care of business.

We will also take in stride the loss of some familiar faces. It is part of the Army way called PCSing.

Madigan will miss everyone leaving this summer, but we have comfort in knowing that as old friends depart, new friends are just arriving. I welcome all our new arrivals with a hearty hello and wish each and every one of our departing teammates Godspeed with fair winds and following seas.

As we turn away from our farewells and welcoming handshakes, Team Madigan will focus on the task at hand with champion-minded confidence and with no doubt of the outcome. I quote that contemporary commenter, Larry I think his name is who says, "Get er done!" We do. 24/7, 365 a year. Care with Compassion.

Page last updated Tue May 18th, 2010 at 16:00