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    Nine lives

    Nine lives

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Edward Siguenza | Members of Echo Company, 1st Battalion, 294th Infantry Regiment, Guam Army National...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Edward Siguenza 

    1-294th Infantry Regiment

    FORWARD OPERATING BASE GAMBERI, Afghanistan -- Nine Soldiers from Echo Company, 1st Battalion, 294th Infantry Regiment, Guam Army National Guard, have spent the latter of their Operation Enduring Freedom mission protecting a critical logistics team.

    This team supplies the Afghan National Army with equipment, training and other key necessities.

    When the team makes its site run, it calls the Guam soldiers to provide transportation, personal security and guardian angels to ANA compounds outside of Gamberi. Task Force Guam soldiers respond with professionalism and enthusiasm, says Maj. Anjeanette Lawson, Regional Command-East logistics officer in charge.

    "I can't imagine doing anything without them," Lawson said. "They're great soldiers and a big part of the great team we have. They bring life to the group."

    The Guam soldiers unite with nine Army active duty soldiers, civilian contractors and instructors, to form a bond that caters to ANA's 201st Corps in the eastern Afghan region. The soldiers run daily missions, sometimes even twice a day. When there's a scheduled break, they're actively conducting basic skills or common tasks training to their leaders.

    "I couldn't ask for a better team," said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Sherry Coffey, chief maintenance officer, 16th Military Police Brigade from Fort Bragg, S.C. and second in command of the Gamberi logistics group. "They're professionals. They're always on alert. They're young, but they know when to be serious when the mission begins."

    Gamberi is one of nearly a dozen locations Guam Guardsmen are based. It's a small post within an ANA compound, but it's distantly separated from other Guam-occupied stations. The Gamberi group is also one of five that divides Echo Company.

    "We're separated from the main unit, but we're doing good. We rely on each other for things we need and our families help by sending us other things," said Sgt. Branden Cruz, fire team leader and administrator. "Everyone works as a team. We make sure everyone knows each order's job. The people we work for are good. They make us want to come back for more work."

    The Guam Guardsmen are a short helicopter flight from Jalalabad, an eastern Afghan city popularized by the award-winning movie Zero Dark Thirty. On May 1, 2011, four helicopters carrying close to 80 American troops, namely Navy SEALs, left Jalalabad to Abbottabad, Pakistan, and raided Osama bin Laden's compound.



    Date Taken: 09.06.2013
    Date Posted: 09.06.2013 06:44
    Story ID: 113195

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