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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Emotions run heavy during ceremony

Friday, January 2, 2009

SPC Brad Keil, Terre Haute, kisses his wife Reba goodbye. Jason Moon Photo. [Order this photo]
Spc. 4th Class Kevin Withers spent a lot of time with his family during the holidays prior to Friday's sendoff.

Withers was one of more than 100 Indiana National Guard members that were treated with a ceremony Friday at North Clay Middle School. The soldiers from the 138th Quartermaster Support Company, departed the county Friday for Camp Atterbury before being deployed to Iraq.

Withers' girlfriend Krikette said the holidays were "very emotional."

"We spent everyday over the holidays together," she said.

Withers' father Kevin was pleased he was able to spend time with his son during the holidays.

"I knew it would get here," Kevin said of the deployment. "I'm really proud of him."

Friday's ceremony included speaking engagements from several soldiers, including 519th CSSB Commander Lt. Col Kevin Vedder, 138th Quartermaster Support Commander Capt. Laura Pratt, 138th Quartermaster 1st Sgt. Neil Stough, and Sgt. 1st Class Neil Brown.

"You all are absolutely amazing," Pratt told the audience. "This is a tough day and there are a lot of emotions. But we're going to make it through this day.

"I say this place is magic and it truly is."

Stough also thanked those in attendance Friday.

"This is exactly the way we wanted it," he said. "We wouldn't have it any other way."

Specialist Brad Keil, Terre Haute, spent the final few moments prior to leaving for Camp Atterbury with his wife Reba.

"We've just adjusted," Reba said. "We've known about (the deployment) for a while."

The unit was notified in September the soldiers would be departing for Iraq at the turn of the year.

The unit performs logistics operations such as issuing, receiving, transporting and storing supplies.

Staff Sgt. Mike Ames said some of the soldiers in the unit have been deployed before.

"We're going with a very good company and a very good first sergeant," Ames, a resident of Clay County, said. "We're all very confident things will be taken care of here at home. I'm a full-time soldier. I'm lucky my family supports me.

"They knew we were going to go sometime. Our number came up."

In addition, Brazil City Council President Bill Lovett stepped in for Brazil Mayor Ann Bradshaw, who was unable to attend. Lovett read a prepared speech.

The Northview High School band also provided entertainment and the Boy Scout Troop 101 posted the colors.

While speaking to the audience, Stough got emotional, but added the troops leaving would be in good hands.

"We're going to take care of these soldiers," he said.

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our hearts and prayers are with you all.

Brad and Lupe Keil

yes that is my son in picture

-- Posted by nitrob58 on Fri, Jan 2, 2009, at 8:43 PM

How proud I am of all those who keep our country free of fighting and at peace. They deserve our love, support, prayers and gratitude. Thank you soldiers. May God go with you all.

-- Posted by Tracy Jones on Fri, Jan 2, 2009, at 9:53 PM

Thank you to all of you that fight for our freedom! We are all proud of you! Come home safe! My cousin Tracee Burris is on his 3rd tour over there, so stay strong!!! God bless you all,

-- Posted by Becki on Sat, Jan 3, 2009, at 7:19 AM

Thank you for all the fighting that the soldiers are doing for us to have more freedom. I hope the soldiers come back home all safe and sound. I will pray for them every night before I go to bed to come home safe and sound to their loved ones.

-- Posted by AmayaTsuki on Sat, Jan 3, 2009, at 7:24 AM

That's my baby boy in that pic. I'll pray for him everyday til he comes home.

Your Mom

-- Posted by rundunnyrun on Sat, Jan 3, 2009, at 1:09 PM

I am glad to see our hometown support their unit. This event clearly shows the true colors of Brazil. I am proud to be from Brazil, and to serve our country.

-- Posted by BRAZILNUT on Sun, Jan 4, 2009, at 5:55 AM

138th, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, YHANK YOU! God Bless each and everyone of you!

-- Posted by ccc on Mon, Jan 5, 2009, at 7:43 AM

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