Now That’s a Send-Off

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — Before the nearly 4,100 soldiers in the 34th Brigade Combat Team leave for Iraq, family and friends wanted to make sure they were sent off in style – and with a little taste of home.
At Camp Shelby Wednesday, there were 8,000 home-cooked steaks, a band and plenty of kegs of beer. Lines of cars with out-of-state license plates snaked through the roads to the base to arrive at the party.
The soldiers hail from Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Nebraska and New Jersey, but about 2,600 are from Minnesota. Those soldiers are the largest contingent of Minnesota’s National Guard to see combat since World War II.
A popular St. Paul restaurant, Mancini’s, served up the same steaks that customers get back in Minnesota. Ted Marti, whose son is part of the brigade expected to be gone for a year, brought dozens of kegs of beer and root beer from his family’s Minnesota brewery.
Like other National Guard units to deploy in recent years, the brigade represented a cross-section of people from soldiers in their 50s to those who were too young to drink the free beer.
“We’ve got a lot of emotions with our son going,” he said. “So we wanted to throw them a party. This is New Ulm (Minn.) style.”

God speed, ya’ll.

3 Responses to “Now That’s a Send-Off”

  1. Crusader says:

    Good for them! Hope they can do something like that when they return, too. All the folks in uniform desrve it. Just thanked a client the other day who was a WWII vet. Caught him off guard.

  2. Lisa says:

    Oh, man, don’t let my husband read this! They’ll be expecting fried catfish!

  3. (Gitcher fishin’ pole out, girl…)

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