Photo Information

Friends and family members on Camp Foster display a banner March 23 welcoming back Marines assigned to Marine Wing Support Group 17, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing. The Marines returned from a deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Photo by Lance Cpl. Juan D. Alfonso

Motor T detachment returns after 7-month deployment

29 Mar 2007 | Lance Cpl. Juan D. Alfonso

Emotions ran high as Cpl. Amanda Morgan waited patiently last Friday night for her husband, Lance Cpl. Sean Morgan, to step off a bus and back into her life after a seven-month Iraq deployment.

"I haven't seen my husband in so long," said Cpl. Morgan, a data analyst with Headquarters and Service Battalion, Marine Corps Base Camp Butler. "I can't wait to just give him a big hug."

The Morgans got their much-anticipated embrace that night when Lance Cpl. Morgan and the rest of a small group of Marines assigned to Marine Wing Support Group 17, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, returned from a deployment to Fallujah, Iraq.

The Marines deployed as a motor transportation detachment with personnel from several units in Japan and Hawaii Aug. 24. The unit's mission was to provide logistical support to ground units in and around the city of Fallujah.

Lance Cpl. Morgan returned safely with the other 39 Marines he left for combat with after a job well done, said 1st Lt. Michael F. Cuddy, the platoon commander for the detachment.

"We delivered food, water, ice, chow - whatever the grunts needed, we were there to provide," Cuddy said. "It felt good to help out the infantry however we could. I only wish there was more we could have done."

Doing more in Iraq is a sentiment shared by many of the Marines in the unit.

"At times I was scared," said Pfc. Steven W. Keith, a motor vehicle operator with the group. "We were hit by two separate (improvised explosive devices), and I was worried about not coming home or coming home without one of my buddies, but we did come home with all the guys we went out with. We did what we intended to do, and I'm proud to have been a part of it."

According to Master Gunnery Sgt. Mark M. Niro, the communications chief for the group, motivation among the Marines before the deployment was as high as could be.

"We came into the Marine Corps to do the things we train for," Niro said. "This deployment was like being on a football team and sitting on the bench all season. Then they finally got a chance to play in the game. These Marines have now been to combat and served their country. There is no greater honor."
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