News: 36th Engineer Brigade sends First Soldier on Rest and Recuperation (R&R) leave
Story by 1st Lt. Edwin Melendez
JOINT BASE BALAD, Iraq - The first Soldier to return home from Iraq for Rest and Recuperation leave reported today to the passenger terminal at Joint Base Balad.
Army Pfc. Eddie J. Burks, topographic analyst for Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 36th Engineer Brigade (Joint Task Force Rugged), has spent a couple of months in Iraq. The R&R program is giving him a special opportunity to go home to Killeen, Texas, where he will reunite with his wife, Erica Burks, who is expecting to give birth to twin girls April 30, 2010. Pfc Burks is hoping to make it home before that day.
"I'm really excited to be able to go home before my wife gives birth to our twin girls. I'm looking forward for the 15 days together especially now that those days are non-chargeable," said Pfc. Burks.
The Defense Department announced last month that Iraq and Afghanistan have been designated as non-chargeable rest and recuperation locations, authorizing service members deployed there 15 days of administrative absence, to be used in conjunction with benefits provided under the R&R leave program.
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