Polar Bears Return Home

Polar Bear

They call me Mr Sunshine
Verified Military
Joined
Aug 14, 2006
Messages
4,524
Location
Kentucky
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]4-31Return[/FONT]​
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[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]4-31 unit returns from Iraq, without the two soldiers still classified as missing-captured[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Updated: 10/28/2007 7:57 AM By: Brian Dwyer, New York News 10[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]FORT DRUM, N.Y. -- It was standing room only as more than 300 members of the 2nd Brigade's 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment walked through the doors of the McGrath Gym on Fort Drum after spending the last 15 months in Iraq. And after the ceremony, it was hugs, kisses, and wiping away tears of joy.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"It's pretty exciting." Specialist Matthew Amburgey said. "It's a nice feeling. I missed them all. It's good to be home."[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"It's the greatest feeling in the world." Matthew's mother Trina said. "There's no way to describe it. Just absolutely incredible."[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]For some, that incredible feeling was setting eyes on someone for the very first time.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"I've got, I've got a little son. I just came back from Iraq. It's cool man." Sgt. Randy Woolford said, holding his new son.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]The soldiers also told stories of all they accomplished during their tour. Taking land from enemy forces and making the area safe for locals.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]But one thing they'll never forget, happened about halfway through their deployment.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Three members of the unit, Private Byron Fouty, Specialist Alex Jimenez and Private First Class Joseph Anzack disappeared after an attack. A full scale search and rescue mission began, and a week later Anzack's body was found in the Euphrates River. To this day, both Fouty and Jimenez haven't been found or heard from.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"While we're disappointed and frustrated that we couldn't recover our soldiers, we're quite confident that the men that took our place will continue to fight and continue to search for them morning, noon, and night." First Sgt. Matt Eversmann said.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"Everyday we went out looking for them. Everybody was always constantly looking until the day we left. We hope they come home soon." Amburgey added.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]"When troops deploy, there's the reality of warfare. That is undeniable when you lose soldiers and you lose friends. This brigade paid a heavy price on this deployment." Eversmann added.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]In all, 53 soldiers in the unit would not come home. The ones who came back say they'll never forget those who didn't.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]The soldiers we talked with say they know in their hearts, the soldiers who took their place, will look just as hard for their missing brothers, as they did.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]The following is an email received by LTG (Ret.) R. L. Wetzel, Honorary Colonel of the 31st Infantry Regiment from LTC Michael Infanti. [/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]We Welcome our 4-31 brothers home, and are proud of their accomplishment, and we will continue to keep PVT Fouty, and SPC Jimenez in our prayers.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Saturday, November 03, 2007 3:34 AM[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Subject: Re: RETURN OF THE POLAR BEARS[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Sir-[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]As I write this note I have Soldiers that have already returned to Fort[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Drum. Our BCT has a redeployment ceremony planned that you are more[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]than welcome to attend. MAJ Henry (XO) and CPT White (Rear-D) have[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]better fidelity on the date and can assist in getting you up to Fort Drum.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Sir, I return without two of our Polar Bears and am extremely proud of[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]each and every one of our Soldiers. We suffered 20x KIA, 109x WIA (some[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Soldiers wounded more than once) and 2x MIS/CAP. Our Polar Bears[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]eliminated the term "Triangle of Death" from the lexicon. They did not[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]disrupt, contain or interdict the Triangle of Death, they eliminated it[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]by getting after the enemy and living with the people. The enemy knows[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]who the Polar Bears are and rather than continuing to fight a losing[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]battle they moved operations elsewhere. Of course, they did this minus[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]some key leaders and facillitators who had been either killed or captured.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]The bottom line is that our Polar Bears added to the legacy of the[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Regiment and did nothing to tarnish that legacy in any way, shape or[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]form. In fact, two of our Polar Bears (CPT Shane Finn and SFC Del[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Rodriguez) were awarded Silver Stars for gallentry in action.[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]Take care Sir and I look forward to seeing you at Fort Drum.[/FONT]​

[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]vr[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif]infanti[/FONT]

Welcome Home
 

LibraryLady

Verified Military
Joined
Sep 7, 2006
Messages
5,074
Welcome home! Outstanding work!

Prayers out to all the families of the deceased, wounded and missing.

LL
 

Gypsy

SSSO 1&2/Plank Owner
Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2006
Messages
3,641
Location
Red dot in a blue state
"While we're disappointed and frustrated that we couldn't recover our soldiers, we're quite confident that the men that took our place will continue to fight and continue to search for them morning, noon, and night." First Sgt. Matt Eversmann said.


BTW, is this *THE* Matt Eversmann?
 
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