MP returns home
Sgt. 1st Class Chad Klinge, 6th MP Det., left, is welcomed home Feb. 14 by Col. James A. Muskopf, Fort Rucker garrison commander, and garrison Command Sgt. Maj. Dwaine E. Walters outside the detachment's headquarters.

FORT RUCKER, Ala. -- On Valentine's Day, many people gave tokens of love -- whether they were chocolates, jewelry or flowers -- to their significant others.

Sgt. 1st Class Chad Klinge, 6th Military Police Detachment, was able to give his wife, Candis, perhaps the best gift of all - his presence.

Several 6th MP Detachment and garrison Soldiers welcomed Klinge home in a ceremony Monday afternoon. The Soldier spent the past year serving with Task Force 435 in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

While overseas, he taught 32 Afghani college students and several units how to use the Biometrics Automated Toolset-Handheld Interagency Identification Detection Equipment system.

Klinge said the HIIDE devices take fingerprints and iris scans and send them to a laboratory where those scans are put in a database.

"It (creates) a national registry," said Capt. David LeMay, 6th MP Detachment commander. "It's an easy way to take a census."

LeMay said in the beginning stages, the devices were used to document detainees. Over time, though, it has been used to better keep track of a population.

He said the movement to a positive use of the HIIDE devices is comparable to the domestic practice of fingerprinting children for safety and security reasons.

Before deploying, Klinge had no training on the device's use. He learned how to use the system during a four-day class.

"(Instructors) said, 'You're good to go. Go do it,'" Klinge said.

"It's not that hard to learn. It's harder to teach foreigners," LeMay said, citing the language barrier as an issue.

During his first combat deployment, Klinge helped document 19,000 Afghanis.

"The combat tour was exciting - to go out into the field with other Soldiers," he said, noting he learned to practice more patience through the various tasks he had to accomplish there.

Despite that, Klinge is happy to be home, even though he disregarded the symbolism of coming home on Valentine's Day.

"If I wasn't married, (the tour) would be easy," he said. "I'm just glad it was (only a) year."

Page last updated Fri February 18th, 2011 at 11:20