News: Father, son reunite in Iraq by rare chance
By: 1st LT Matthew B. Castiglione
CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE SPEICHER, Iraq – Staff Sgt. George Chisholm II, a platoon sergeant for the 89th Transportation Company, 275th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 77th Sustainment Brigade, 310th Expeditionary Sustainment Command has not seen his son, Spc. Ryan Lamar Chisholm, a military intelligence analyst attached to Task Force Odin, 4th Infantry Division and a native of Killeen, Texas, since his son’s high school graduation.
Many soldiers, past and present, have followed in their father's footsteps and joined the Army, keeping a tradition of service intact through the decades. A small amount, however, can say they have served alongside their father in a deployed environment. These two service members are an example of the few lucky fathers and sons to be stationed at the same location, especially in Iraq.
The Chisholm family’s military ties are abundant, and it is clear that the entire family is proud of their service. Ryan’s mother-in-law is serving in the Army as well and is currently stationed at Fort Hood, Texas. George’s stepson enlisted in the Navy and his step-daughter is currently serving in the Air Force.
When the decision needed to be made to choose a career, the decision was easy.
Following his parents’ footsteps, Ryan joined the United States Army and went to basic training immediately after his high school graduation.
“Oh, here he comes,” Ryan said jokingly, when he found out that his father will be joining him at COB Speicher.
George’s unit was ordered to deploy in support of Operation New Dawn six months before his unit was slated to deactivate.
Not many soldiers can say they have deployed with their father and stationed at the same post,” Ryan said.
However, there are negative aspects of serving in the military together, such as the realization that your family member may be in harm’s way. Ryan knows that his father must perform convoy missions and other tasks required of soldiers.
“It makes me a little nervous, but he has been doing it for a long time, so I know he’s going to take care of himself,” said Ryan of the tasks his father is required to perform while at work.
“Also, my unit provides over-watch and route surveillances for the convoys, so I’m watching his back when he is on a mission,” Ryan said.
Due to demanding schedules, the father and son duo can only meet once a week, but the limited time spent together is definitely enjoyed and cherished.
“We sit down to enjoy a nice meal and talk about family and work,” George said.
The ability to enjoy the deployment-time together is already one of the fondest memories of his Army career, George said.