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 March 18, 2014

FORMAL WELCOME HOME CEREMONY SET FOR CONNECTICUT ARMY NATIONAL GUARD LOGISTICS, AVIATION AND TRANSPORTATION UNITS

Two Purple Hearts, 20 Bronze Stars to be Awarded

HARTFORD, Conn., - Maj. Gen. Thaddeus J. Martin, the Adjutant General and Commander of the Connecticut National Guard, announces that three Connecticut National Guard units will be honored in a formal welcome home ceremony today, March 18, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. at the Governor William A. O’Neill State Armory, Hartford.
The Connecticut Army National Guard’s 143rd Combat Sustainment Support Battalion of Waterbury, 1048th Transportation Company of Enfield and B Company, 2nd Battalion, 104th Aviation Regiment of Windsor Locks will be recognized for their federal overseas service in support of the Global War on Terror.  All three units returned to Connecticut within the last eight months. 
Approximately 60 Soldiers of the 143rd Combat Support Sustainment Battalion (CSSB) of Waterbury are being recognized for their service in Kuwait in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
 This logistics headquarters commanded five subordinate logistics units providing supply,
transportation and operational support to combat forces throughout Southwest Asia.  The unit processed more than 142,000 material release orders, directly supporting units flowing in and out
of Afghanistan with supplies, and completed 590 transportation movement requests logging over 690,000 miles while delivering 10,000 pieces of cargo.
The 143rd CSSB mobilized in February 2013 and returned to Connecticut in December.  This was the unit’s second deployment to Southwest Asia.
The 143rd CSSB is commanded by Lt. Col. Tom Dennis of Norwich. 
Approximately 160 Soldiers of the 1048th Transportation Company are being recognized for their duties in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. 
The unit completed more than 80 transportation and supply missions in Regional Command South (RC-South) logging 517,664 miles while delivering more than 320,000 tons of materiel and equipment. The unit also provided “gun truck” security support for its own convoys and those of sister transportation units. 
The 1048th Transportation Company mobilized in September 2012 and returned to Connecticut in August 2013.   This was the unit’s second deployment to Southwest Asia.
The 1048th Transportation Company is commanded by Capt. Joshua Malaro of Lisbon, Conn.  The unit recently relocated from Stratford to Enfield. 
Approximately 55 members of B Company, 2nd Battalion, 104th Aviation Regiment and  its detachments are being recognized for their service while deployed to Afghanistan. 
 While in Afghanistan, the unit executed more than 2,000 combat flight hours, moving more than three million pounds of equipment during resupply and retrograde missions and executing nearly 200 deliberate and hasty air assault missions in support of U.S., Australian and Lithuanian special forces in very austere rotary-wing aviation environments. 
The unit mobilized in October 2012 and returned to Connecticut in September 2013.    This was the unit’s third overall deployment and second mission to Afghanistan.   
The 2nd Battalion, 104th Aviation Regiment is commanded by Capt. Evan Lock of Southington.
As part of today’s ceremony two members of the 1048 Transportation Company, Staff Sgt. Alex Seretny of Windham and Spec. Michael Peterson of Weymouth, Mass., will be awarded the Purple Heart for wounds sustained during combat actions with an enemy of the United States.  Seretny and Peterson were wounded when their tactical resupply convoy was attacked outside of Qalat, the capital of Zabul Province in southern Afghanistan, while delivering supplies to several forward operating bases. 
Twenty Soldiers are also scheduled to be awarded the Bronze Star Medal.  
This is expected to be the last welcome home ceremony of this size for the Connecticut National Guard as combat operations in Afghanistan begin to scale down through the end of 2014.  
Currently there are nine Soldiers and 11 Airmen from the Connecticut National Guard mobilized and deployed to Southwest Asia.

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