Long Knives start deploying to Iraq
June 3, 2008
FORT HOOD, Texas - A normal Saturday morning in the home of Sgt.Craig Morvant and his family usually consists of Morvant preparing breakfast for his wife, Marcy and his three boys - Justin, Ben and Jacob.
But this past Saturday was anything but normal. Morvant was spending his final day at home before leaving with the first group of the 1st Cavalry Division's 4th "Long Knife" Brigade Combat Team Soldiers for a 15-month deployment to Iraq.
"This morning I was putting some final things in my bag," said Morvant, an information systems analyst for the Long Knife Brigade, who hails from Dallas. "And, well, without being told, Justin decided to go to the kitchen and fry up some eggs and bacon for dad. That's something that I usually do for him, but he decided he would do it for me."
Eight-year-old Justin had been paying close attention to how his dad prepares breakfast, and he wanted to show his father that he can take care of breakfast while Morvant is away in Iraq.
"It made me proud he was able to do that; I almost shed tears in my eyes." said Morvant.
Morvant and approximately 30 Long Knife Soldiers departed for Iraq from Fort Hood's Robert Gray Army Air Field as part of the brigade's advance party, before the unit's main body leaves later this month.
"We're excited about this," said Florence, Ore. native Lt. Col. Scott Gerber, the 4th Brigade executive officer. "We're going to go set the condition for the brigade to move through Kuwait and get into theater, and we're going over there to finish this war off. We're really excited to be the guys to start the brigade down that path."
Gerber knows first hand how hard it was for Morvant to leave his family because the executive officer deployed for more than a year in 2004 when the 4th BCT was attached to the 4th Infantry Division.
"No one wants to leave their family, but at the end of the day there's something special out there, and we're going to protect that," said Gerber. "The reason we enjoy the liberties we have with our families is because throughout the course of our history, there have always been people like Sgt. Morvant to pay that price, and we think it's worth the sacrifice."
"I know I have a job to do; this is what I enlisted to do, so I understand we have to make sacrifices." said Morvant.
Morvant and the Long Knife Brigade Soldiers will train in Kuwait for approximately two weeks before reaching their final destination in Iraq.