News: VA Hospital employee serves as first sergeant during deployment overseas
Photo by Lt. Col Martin Moerschell, USCENTCOM Public Affairs, ESGR Forward Team
Story by Sgt. 1st Class David McCrary, ESGR Forward Team
KUWAIT - U.S. Air Force Reserve Master Sgt. Vincent Mondini of the 911th Aeromedical Staging Squadron out of Coraopolis, Pa. is currently deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, the official name given to military operations from Afghanistan to the Horn of Africa in support of the Global War on Terror.
Mondini says that being away from home and his own lifestyle is the hardest part of being deployed but he pointed out that being part of Operation Enduring Freedom makes up for any hardships that he may encounter.
Active duty and reserve component members from all branches of the U.S. armed forces are deployed under the U.S. Central Command to support the war against global terrorism outside the borders of the United States. U.S. Central Command is the unified command responsible for U.S. security interests and assets in 27 nations stretching from the Horn of Africa, through the Arabian Gulf region, and into Central Asia.
In Kuwait, Mondini serves as a First Sergeant in the 386th Contingency Aeromedical Staging Facility. This is the fourth deployment outside the U.S. for the 1st Sgt who has served in four different branches of the military. In his civilian occupation, Mondini works with the Veterans Hospital in Pittsburgh, Pa. Mondini is grateful for a job where he can both enjoy his work and share positive friendships.
Today, more than 1.2 million members of the National Guard and Reserve continue to perform an increasing number of unique missions that require extraordinary actions on the part of everyday citizens. Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) is the primary resource for information about the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, commonly known as USERRA. This federal law allows Mondini and other mobilized reserve component members to retain their rights, when the deployment concludes.
Established in 1972, Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR), a DoD agency, provides free USERRA education, consultation, and if necessary, mediation for employers of Guard and Reserve employees. The mission of ESGR is to gain and maintain active support from all public and private employers for the men and women of the National Guard and Reserve. More information about ESGR Employer Outreach Programs and volunteer opportunities is available at www.esgr.mil, or by calling the National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve at (800) 336-4590.
Mondini indicated that leadership training taught within the military helps him better perform his job for the Veterans Hospital. He is looking forward to returning to his civilian job.