Welcome-home committee forming for Iraq soldiers
WCLO's Steve Benton talks with Lt. Col. Tim Donovan about the return home of National Guard troops from Janesville
Anyone interested in serving on a committee to organize a welcome-home event for the Janesville-based Alpha Company is asked to send an e-mail to Lucy Anderson at email@example.com.
JANESVILLE As 3,000 Army National Guard soldiers prepare to return to Wisconsin after eight months in Iraq, a local woman is looking for help to organize a welcome-home event in Janesville.
Lucy Anderson helped organize a community sendoff for the Janesville- and Elkhorn-based Alpha Company of the 132nd Support Battalion last February. She said Monday she’s looking for eight to 10 people to organize a welcome-home event for the unit’s approximately 130 members.
About 3,000 members of the 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team have been in Iraq since last spring. The brigade will move south into Kuwait and then fly to Wisconsin sometime in January, according to a recent Guard news release.
The arrival dates are being kept under wraps for security reasons. The various units in the brigade are expected to spend about a week at Fort McCoy after their return.
The Janesville homecoming celebration will not happen for several months, Anderson said.
Alpha Company’s Capt. Chad Simandl has asked that the celebration be postponed until April, in part because the date of the unit’s return to Janesville won’t be known until the last minute.
“We did not think it would be fair … to leave everyone hanging and then expect you to react at the last minute to our schedule,” Simandl wrote in an e-mail.
“We were thinking that we would try to plan something in April when the weather is a little nicer and soldiers have had some time away with their families,” Simandl wrote.
Simandl added that his unit is expected to arrive by bus in Janesville in January, “and we will let everyone know when that is going to be as soon as we find out.”