Soldier Spotlight: CW2 Fred Foster
July 31, 2010
- CW2 Fred Foster
- 1st Sustainment Brigade
Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Fred Foster, a Smithton, Pa. native, is currently serving his first deployment with the 1st Sustainment Brigade, in support of the Responsible Drawdown of Iraq. A graduate of Yough High School, 1985, Foster joined the Army after getting a positive impression of the military service in his first semester of college.
"I signed up for the Army in 1995 during my first semester of college," said Foster. "I was taking the Reserved Officers' Training Core course and liked the ROTC course so much that I didn't want to wait to finish college before joining. So I finished that semester and shipped to basic training in February 1996."
Stationed at Fort Riley, Ks. and deployed to Kuwait, Foster said he is responsible for engineering, installing, operating, maintaining and protecting the 1SB and 1st Infantry Division's Standard Army Management Information Systems (STAMIS).
"The most important aspect of my job is helping customers keep their computer systems running, which I have been doing for the past 14 years," said Foster.
Foster said the training he received prior to deployment helped him prepare for his position as an Information Systems Technician.
"With all the classes, college, certifications and experience the Army has given me, I am more than capable of handling any situation that comes my way," said Foster.
In his free time, Foster said he works out at the gym, watches movies, plays Xbox and studies for information technology certifications.
"Since my deployment I have been working both online and thru classes offered on base to obtain professional IT certifications," said Foster. "One aspect of deployments is that it can actually be easier to study because you really don't have as many other interests competing for your time."
A father of 3, Foster said he is dealing with the deployment well. He said the hardest part is being away from his wife of 12 years, and daughters.
"While it's certainly not home, it is much better than I was expecting," said Foster. "I don't have any reason to complain as we have access to everything we need. Most importantly for me is that there is internet access in our barracks, so I can call or email home whenever I want to."
Despite being away from his family, Foster said he is grateful to finally participate in the 12-month deployment with 1SB, earning his first combat patch. The combat patch is given to Soldiers who deploy to designated combat zones.
"I am really happy to have finally earned a combat patch," said Foster. "Until now I have felt guilty for not having been deployed. You don't have a lot of control over what assignment you get and if that unit will deploy, but I still felt some guilt for being so fortunate. I am glad to be here doing my time, so to speak."