News: 38th Military Police complete mission in Iraq
Story by Spc. William Henry
INDIANAPOLIS – Approximately 170 Soldiers with the 38th Infantry Division Military Police Company, headquartered in Danville, Ind., were greeted home by cheering family, friends and loved ones here at Stout Field Tuesday.
"These Soldiers they sacrificed their normal lives here with us to help provide a better, more prosperous, life for 25 million Iraqi citizens," said Brig. Gen. Joseph Culver, 38th Infantry Division assistant commander, before the Soldiers arrived. "They suffered the heat, the cold, the loneliness. A complete lifestyle change to bring hope to those citizens."
After their deployment to Iraq, Soldiers and loved ones were eager to exchange hugs and shed tears of happiness in the wake of the return.
"It feels wonderful to be back with my two first loves," said Staff Sgt. David Tillema, while looking to his 2-year-old son, Logan, and wife, Linda. "My deployment was pretty smooth. We traveled a lot, and I can't say that I've had a better deployment."
The 38th MP Company worked with police transition teams to train Iraqi citizens to be police officers and how to better perform their operations.
"There has been a dramatic increase in Iraqi police competency from the time we landed in May from when we towed in February," said 38th MP Company commander, Capt. William McGray. "The Iraqi police are quite capable in executing their mission and protecting the Iraqi civilians that they're duty bound to secure."
According to McGray the 38th MP Company Soldiers were responsible for police development in approximately 15 locations and two districts in the vicinity in and around the Baghdad area.
"We were very successful, I believe," said 1st Sgt. Johnny Madden, top enlisted Soldier for the 38th MP Company.
Madden said from the time they arrived to the time the unit left there was a immense difference in the police force as a whole. "It was very rewarding," added Madden.