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Army Chief of Staff visits CJTF-HOA

By Sgt. Matthew B. Roberson | | August 25, 2003

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The Army Chief of Staff, General Peter J. Schoomaker visited the Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa here, August 22nd and 23rd to meet with and congratulate Marines, sailors, soldiers and airmen on a job well done.

Upon his arrival, Schoomaker ate dinner with Army Staff Non-Commissioned Officers and Non-Commissioned Officers to talk about issues and answer questions pertaining to ongoing Army operations.  An Officers Call followed the dinner, where similar issues were discussed with senior officers from the CJTF.

Schoomaker held a troop call before his departure to award four Bronze Stars to soldiers now serving with CJTF and speak to all personnel as well as take photos aboard Camp Lemonier. 

The Bronze Star is awarded to individuals who distinguish themselves by heroic or meritorious achievement or service in connection with military operations against an armed enemy.  The 4 individuals from CJTF-HOA were recognized for their actions during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

After the presentation of the Bronze Stars, Schoomaker addressed personnel saying, "I couldn't be more proud than to be standing up here in front of you as the 35th Chief of Staff of the United States Army." Schoomaker continued, "Whether you're a soldier, sailor, airman, Marine or coalition partner I'm proud to be here with you and able to serve you."

Schoomaker said this trip has taken him from Washington D.C. to Fort Benning, K-2, Afghanistan, Qatar, Kuwait, Bagdad and to all the divisions in Iraq.

"I've had the opportunity to talk to [many service members] about things that are going on right now and it's important to me because as the Army Chief of Staff and a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff we have a lot of work to do in regards to figuring out how to sustain and win this war on terrorism," Schoomaker said. "I want to make sure I'm armed with reality as I'm making these decisions.  Thanks to people like you who weren't afraid to tell me how it is, I'm now armed with some good ammunition."

Schoomaker ended his speech by saying, "Congratulations, thank you for your support and keep up the good work...your country appreciates what you are doing."



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