80.3 F
Charlotte Amalie
Monday, July 4, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesVING Troops Deploy to Kosovo

VING Troops Deploy to Kosovo

Spec. Richard Pagan comforts his girlfriend, Nichelle Mahepath, before he deploys.The tears flowed freely from grandmas and girlfriends as the V. I. National Guard Company 661 departed for Kosovo Wednesday morning.
The specific mission of the law-enforcement unit could not be disclosed, but the 661st is a peace-keeping, law and order company, according to Capt.. Arthur Hector, company commander.
“I have a lot of confidence we will go, and execute, and return safe – everyone in one piece,” Capt. Hector said adding “with God speed.”
The 661st Military Police Company has a history with three recent deployments. They have deployed to Guantanamo, Iraq and now, Kosovo, in central Europe.
The first stop for the 72 personnel from St. Croix and 28 from St. Thomas will be 45 days at Camp Atterberry, IN. Then they are expected to go to Germany, then Kosovo, spending a year away from home.
The parking lot by the Henry Rohlsen Airport fire station was filled with family and friends hugging, kissing and crying , wishing the Guardsmen well.
Sgt. Carmen Figueroa, a grandmother who has been in the Sgt. Carmen Figueroa crying but ready to roll.Guard for 29 years, wiped away tears, trying to stay strong as she left on her second deployment.
“This is very sad,” said Figueroa as she wiped her eyes. “A year is a long time.”
“She is serving a purpose and does a good job,” said Roberto Figueroa, her adult son.
Lt. Gov. Gregory R. Francis, a former guardsman, was there to wish the soldiers well.
“I believe the training the guard provided has prepared our unit well,” Francis said. “They must keep in mind that not all are in favor of peace and be conscious of all around at all times.” He added “and prayers do help.”
Eight-year-old Destiny Stout’s dad, Sgt. First Class Eddie Stout, has been deployed three times.
“His job is to keep our family safe,” Destiny Stout says. “I will miss him – but we have pictures.”
The families left behind on St. Croix have the Family Readiness group to fall back on for all sorts of issues while the troops are gone.
“We send care packages, host parties, and are a wealth of resources for the families,” said Linda Todman, of the readiness group. She said nobody goes it alone when a soldier leaves.
Kiara Scatliffee, girlfriend of Specialist E4 Angel Carrion, cried as she said, “It’s going to be hard, but we can communicate everyday.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.




Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.

STAY CONNECTED

20,771FansLike
4,757FollowersFollow

FROM FACEBOOK

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons
15 hours ago
Virgin Islands Source

Host Adisha Penn recaps the biggest headlines of the week while Source reporter Knema Willett joins USVI Division of Festivals Director Ian Turnbull in the studio for some behind-the-scenes info on the 2022 St. John Celebration. ... See MoreSee Less

Load more

Spec. Richard Pagan comforts his girlfriend, Nichelle Mahepath, before he deploys.The tears flowed freely from grandmas and girlfriends as the V. I. National Guard Company 661 departed for Kosovo Wednesday morning.
The specific mission of the law-enforcement unit could not be disclosed, but the 661st is a peace-keeping, law and order company, according to Capt.. Arthur Hector, company commander.
“I have a lot of confidence we will go, and execute, and return safe – everyone in one piece,” Capt. Hector said adding “with God speed.”
The 661st Military Police Company has a history with three recent deployments. They have deployed to Guantanamo, Iraq and now, Kosovo, in central Europe.
The first stop for the 72 personnel from St. Croix and 28 from St. Thomas will be 45 days at Camp Atterberry, IN. Then they are expected to go to Germany, then Kosovo, spending a year away from home.
The parking lot by the Henry Rohlsen Airport fire station was filled with family and friends hugging, kissing and crying , wishing the Guardsmen well.
Sgt. Carmen Figueroa, a grandmother who has been in the Sgt. Carmen Figueroa crying but ready to roll.Guard for 29 years, wiped away tears, trying to stay strong as she left on her second deployment.
“This is very sad,” said Figueroa as she wiped her eyes. “A year is a long time.”
“She is serving a purpose and does a good job,” said Roberto Figueroa, her adult son.
Lt. Gov. Gregory R. Francis, a former guardsman, was there to wish the soldiers well.
“I believe the training the guard provided has prepared our unit well,” Francis said. “They must keep in mind that not all are in favor of peace and be conscious of all around at all times.” He added “and prayers do help.”
Eight-year-old Destiny Stout's dad, Sgt. First Class Eddie Stout, has been deployed three times.
“His job is to keep our family safe,” Destiny Stout says. “I will miss him – but we have pictures.”
The families left behind on St. Croix have the Family Readiness group to fall back on for all sorts of issues while the troops are gone.
“We send care packages, host parties, and are a wealth of resources for the families,” said Linda Todman, of the readiness group. She said nobody goes it alone when a soldier leaves.
Kiara Scatliffee, girlfriend of Specialist E4 Angel Carrion, cried as she said, “It's going to be hard, but we can communicate everyday.”