Bravo Company receives an emotional send-off

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Tuesday morning, the community gathered at the National Guard armory in Poplarville to give a heartfelt send-off to soldiers serving in Bravo Company 155th Combined Arms Battalion. That morning, enlisted men and women left Pearl River County for Fort Bliss in Texas, where they would later be deployed to the Central Command Theater in Kuwait.

Bravo Company Commander Rodney L. Hall Jr., said the unit will continue decisive action and combined arms maneuver training in Texas prior to going to Kuwait.

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According to previous coverage, approximately 4,200 enlisted personnel of the Mississippi National Guard 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team in Mississippi will be mobilized in support of Operation Spartan Shield.

At the send-off, personnel in uniform held their children, kissed their spouses, received blessings from elders and took pictures with family and friends. When their time was up, the soldiers lined up to board buses waiting to escort the unit to Jackson, Miss. before they headed for Texas.

Hall said the mission’s objective is to work alongside the host nation’s forces to strengthen relations and train them how to build their defenses.

“Our aim is to bolster relations between our countries,” Hall said.

Anxious families fought back tears as they bid farewell to their husbands, fathers, sons and grandsons whom they wouldn’t see until next spring.

Ariel Slater, six months pregnant said she was fine when she first heard about her husband Justin’s deployment, but in the past few weeks it became extremely difficult to fight the tears. She said it will be the first time he’ll be away from home for so long.

“I’m proud of him and happy that he’s serving his country,” Slater said.

For newlywed Mallory Head, she said it will be tough to deal with the absence of her husband Tyler Krutzfeldt for an entire year. Head said she was very proud of her husband’s dedication, but is nervous that he was leaving.

National Guardsman Juan Ramirez said he’s looking forward his first deployment because it will be a new experience and he expects to get something good out of it.

“Not everybody gets a chance like this,” Ramirez said.