Tuesday, June 16, 2009


It's customary at the end of a deployed unit's time in country to have a send-off that usually includes food and awards.

It was not much different for the 142d Chaplain Detachment as our time for leaving here drew near. We are a unit, after all, even if there are only two of us in it!

Two Thursdays ago our Section threw us a party. MSG M (the Division Chaplain NCOIC) cooked steaks and chicken breasts on the grill outside our office. Other members of the team raided the DFAC for condiments, fried chicken, salad, chili, garlic bread and other goodies. SFC K even made really yummy deviled eggs -- quite a feat for having no kitchen facilities available to him!


It was especially nice to have meat that hadn't been boiled both before and after being cooked!

Before supper, most of the members of the Chaplain Section smoked ceegars. (That appears to be a technical term used by people who appear in public wearing rather large headgear.) I did not partake, however. (I used to smoke -- even cigarettes -- and figure it's just better for me not to light up anything at all these days....)

The Division Command Sergeant Major and another guest even showed up for the festivities.

After we'd all eaten, SFC McG and I each received a handsome crystalline plaque, and an "impact handshake" in recognition of the more than 135 combat missions we performed outside the wire, and for coordinating Catholic coverage to over 30,000 Soldiers, Sailors, Coasties, Marines, and Airmen (not to mention some 60,000 - 70,000 civilians and coalition partners in the Area of Operations) during our time Down Range while working 5.5 months for one Army Division, and then 5.5 months for another.

What an experience!

SFC McG clearly enjoyed his ceegar before supper, as can be seen in the photos above! (Click to enlarge.)

Blessings and peace to one and all,

Fr. Tim, SJ

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