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News: 1st LAR Marines return from Afghanistan in time for Memorial Day

Story by Cpl. Benjamin Crilly and Sgt. Jacob Harrer

1st LAR Marines return from Afghanistan in time for Memorial Day Sgt. Jacob Harrer

Beatriz Y. Orta, a military spouse from Long Beach, Calif., awaits the arrival of her husband from Afghanistan during a homecoming ceremony for 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion here, May 25. Lance Cpl. Louis C. Orta, a gunner with 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division, arrived home from a seven-month deployment to Helmand province, Afghanistan.

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. – Five pink shirts. The family of Lance Cpl. Louis C. Orta was ready for him to return home, and they dressed in their own unique uniform for him: pink t-shirts with “welcome home” written on them.

Orta, a point man and lead sweeper with 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, served for seven months in Helmand province, Afghanistan, and he arrived with his unit safely during a homecoming ceremony here, May 25.

“Finally we can get our lives back on track, so just go back to school and return to our normal lives,” said Beatriz Y. Orta, Louis’s spouse.

More than 200 Marines returned from the deployment, just in time to spend Memorial Day weekend with their loved ones.

The cloudy skies and brisk winds rolling across the parade deck had no effect on the enthusiasm of relatives and friends waiting at Camp Las Flores.

A light armored vehicle and members of the Patriot Guard escorted the buses as the crowd erupted in cheers.

“I’m proud of them because they had an opportunity to go do the mission they were trained to perform,” said Lt. Col. George C. Schreffler, the 1st LAR Bn. commander. “They did it extremely well, and now they can come home and reap the rewards and be able to spend the time with people that they love.”

First Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion deployed to Khan Neshin District last fall where they supported Operation Enduring Freedom. The Marines operated in Helmand province’s southernmost district in support of Regimental Combat Team 5. Their mobility allowed them to provide unique support by disrupting enemy’s command and control and logistical network over 70 kilometers along the Helmand River Valley.

In addition to conducting traditional combat operations, the battalion developed the Afghan Uniformed Police, Afghan Border Police and Afghan National Army by partnering with them and training their Afghan counterparts. The security and stability achieved during their deployment enabled the development of local governance, expansion of education and the improved economic success of the people without relying on poppy farming.


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Public Domain Mark
This work, 1st LAR Marines return from Afghanistan in time for Memorial Day, by Sgt Benjamin Crilly and Sgt Jacob Harrer, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:05.25.2012

Date Posted:05.25.2012 22:26

Location:CAMP PENDLETON, CA, USGlobe

Hometown:HOUSTON, TX, US

Hometown:LONG BEACH, CA, US

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