By Sgt. 1st Class Sheryl L. Lawry, 500th Military Intelligence Battalion Public AffairsJuly 22, 2008
Comrades in arms wed couple when mobilization threatens to intervenePHOENIX - When most Soldiers find out their unit is being mobilized and will soon deploy, all-important life plans are put on hold. When a wedding is one of those events, some couples head to the courthouse for an uneventful exchange of vows with a justice of the peace, and then they return the next day or week with wedding rings and simply "drive on," as the Army saying goes.The scenario, however, doesn't have to be this way. Providing proof of this fact is the close-knit 301st Military Intelligence Battalion, 500th MI Brigade. Upon learning that Pvt. Brandon Manygoats, and his fiancAfA, Charity, were headed for that uneventful courthouse exchange, members of the battalion stepped in. "This was not an M-16 (hasty) wedding," said Master Sgt. Tina Kennedy, A Company first sergeant. "They were supposed to get married a few months from now, but the mobilization interfered with it." Leading the wedding charge was Staff Sgt. Kelly Greene, A Co.'s supply noncommissioned officer and unofficial unit wedding planner. Instead of the courthouse, Greene planned for Manygoats' wedding to be held in the unit's courtyard. "Once the plan was approved, I decided the green grass (of the unit's courtyard) would be a better location for a summer wedding," she said. While the wedding took only a week to plan, guests and even Manygoats himself said the event felt like it had been planned for months. "I liked the way it turned out," said Manygoats, who dated Charity for seven years before they were married and had a son, Cameron, together. "It was way more than I expected. I can't thank them enough for all the work and effort they put into this." The wedding was just as special to the battalion's Soldiers. "It was really sweet," said Spc. Kayla Berry, a supply specialist. "It was kind of traditional, except it was at the unit." As with all weddings, this one came with a reception, first dance, and a "just married" vehicle. "It was just amazing what they put together," said Kennedy. "They put in a lot of time and extra effort to make it look amazing. It was crazy cool."