- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army LTC. Michael Mundle
Town of Danville Resident, Branch of Service- Army, Current Status- Reserves
High School- Murphy High School, Mobile, Alabama, May 1990
College- Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana, 5/15/1994, BS Electrical Engineering
College- Norwich University, Northfield, Vermont, June 19, 2015 MBA
Joined the military- May 1994
Completed Signal Officer Basic Course- Nov. 1994 in Fort Gordon, Georgia
Completed Army Airborne School in Jan 1995
First Assignment- March 1995 Army Space Command, Landstuhl Germany- Operations Officer Satellite Control Center
Jan. 1997- May 1998- 72nd Signal Battalion, Manheim, Germany- Assistant Battalion Plans and Operations officer
May 1998- Mike got out of the service
2008 he was reappointed and became the 98th Signal Battalion company commander for Bravo Company in Mesa, AZ.
2011-2013- Detachment commander for 311th signal command in Costa Mesa, CA
2013- He did a branch transfer from Signal to Medical Service Corps
2013- Present He is the S6 for the 352nd Combat Support Hospital at Camp Parks, Dublin
Bosnia 11/97- 3/98 Officer in Command of 3 Satellite Terminals in Sarajevo-72D Signal BN
Jan 2015- Nov 2016- Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan DET 15, 3rd MCDS TAC FWD- Health Info systems Manager S-6
2nd Lieutenant- May 1994
1st Lieutenant- May 1996
Major- Oct. 2010
Lt. Colonel- Aug. 1, 2016
Army Achievement Medal
Army Commendation Medal-3 of them
Meritorious Service Medal
Armed Forces Service Medal
ARCAM-2 of them
National Defense Service Medal
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Cpl. Michael Gonzales
Michael is the youngest of three brothers. Michael was born in Sacramento, ca. On September 23, 1993. His mother and father had just walked home from his brother, Alex's soccer practice when Michael decided to begin his arrival. As a small child, Michael had a few nicknames. He was called "Mikee" and "Mikee Man" by most of his family. However, Michael was also given the nickname "Stinky" by his older brothers, Chris and Alex. His brothers still continue to call him "Stinky" to this day.
During his childhood, Michael played many sports including soccer, baseball and basketball. He enjoyed soccer very much and hung up his cleats when his team won the championship which was one of his childhood goals. Michael also studied Karate where he earned his 2nd degree yellow belt. He made his father proud on Father’s Day that year, when at age 8 when he took 2nd place in a Karate Tournament.
Michael attended kindergarten at Mary Tsukamoto Elementary in Sacramento. After the family moved to Discovery Bay, Michael continued his education at Discovery Bay Elementary, Excelsior Middle School and Liberty Union High School District. With the guidance of one of his favorite teachers, Wanema Price, Michael graduated high school ahead of schedule in April 2011.
While in high school, Michael took a firefighting course at Los Medanos college. After taking this course he announced to his parents that he was considering enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps. This became a reality in the fall of 2011 when he enlisted in the Marines. He left for boot camp in spring of 2012 where he joined Golf Company, Troop 2154 in San Diego, Ca. Michael graduated from boot camp at MCRD in the summer of 2012 with his MOS in communications. He trained at Twenty-Nine Palms, Ca. He then was transferred and continued his military career at Camp Pendleton, Ca. proudly becoming part of Bravo Company/Platoon Wire.
Michael made many friends there with his closest friend being Nick Herschel Jr. Better known as "Hersch". The 2 met in combat training and ended up working together until they both left the Marines within days of each other.
Michael never lost his sense of humor in the Marines and enjoyed being a prankster. With his love of interesting types of music, Michael enjoyed introducing unsuspecting fellow Marines to punk rock concerts.
Michael completed his active service with an honorable discharge in the rank of Corporal. He earned the title of "Rifle Expert", as well as earning many ribbons and several medals. Two of those medals were earned for "Enlisting During a Time of War" and "the War on Terror".
When he returned home, he was reunited with his cat "Oreo" and his dog "Bosco". Bosco was ecstatic to see Michael. When Michael was 9, he had chosen Bosco through an open adoption during a trip to Mendocino. During the 5 hour car drive home, Bosco slept on Michaels lap the entire trip and their bond was sealed.
Michael is already adjusting to civilian life and is employed with a local restaurant. Michael will be attending college to further his education.
- Memories of our Hellgate boat ride with our friends, Robert and Bonnie
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USAF Senior Airman Christopher Roybal
Senior Airman Christopher Roybal
Chris’ passion for flying was realized after a personality test in high school which returned the results: Air Traffic Controller, Pilot, or Farmer. We decided that there was a trend there and maybe we should dive deeper into the world of aviation.
We reached out to all of our friends and family who might be able to help Chris find out what jobs are in the aviation industry. After taping out family and friends we remembered the Patriots Jet Team out of Byron. We had looked on the web site and found the contact us email. So we emailed and low and behold received an email back within minutes saying that the team would be happy to talk to Chris. They also just happened to have a show that they were doing for NASCAR and invited the family down to watch the take off and join them for an open house.
After meeting the wonderful volunteers of the Patriots Jet Team that day, we were invited to join them for Tuesday/Wednesday work party. Chris worked side by side with incredibly knowledgeable people and had the unique opportunity to learn about mechanics, tools, flight, safety, and most importantly being part of a team. During high school, Chris rarely missed any “Work Party” and his passion grew exponentially.
As a senior he needed to figure his next steps after high school. There were a lot of options but Chris has always been inspired by the Air Force. The Air Force offered the same fundamentals as the Patriots Jet Team… mechanics, tools, flight, safety, and most importantly being part of a team. So he decided to become a part of a new family…the Air Force.
Chris is a Senior Airman and crew chief for the C-130 Hercules. He was assigned to Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany and will be assigned to Dyess Air Force Base in Texas starting in February. During his time at Ramstein he worked the flight line, flown missions with a C130, and recently was assigned to debrief with the pilots as they came into Ramstein.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USN PO2 Lillian Del Beccaro, USN PO2 Christoper Vaughn
Lillian Del Beccaro
- Born October 28, 1987 John Muir Medical Center, Walnut Creek, Ca
Baptized by Father John Crumlish at Catholic Church Transfiguration 4000 E Castro Valley Blvd, Castro Valley, CA
Enrolled Doris Eaton Kindergarten September 1992 Alamo, Ca
Enrolled Palmer School 2740 Jones Road, Walnut Creek, Ca, September 1992 grades 1-5 Walnut Creek ,Ca
Joins Mustang Soccer, Coaches include Tony & Karen Stepper, Denise Del Beccaro , John Fisher & Tim Ramos ; Years 1993 through 2002; joins traveling soccer team
Confirmation at St. Isadore’s Church 440 La Gonda Way, Danville ,CA 1999
Enrolled Los Cerro’s Middle Public School , September 1998, 968 Blemer Rd. Danville, Ca, grades 6-8
Enrolled Monte Vista High School September 2002 , 3131 Stone Valley Road , Danville , CA, Graduates June 2006; on Long Distance Track Team
Works summer of 2005 at Costco , Danville CA
Works three summer Diablo Senior Home, 950 Diablo Rd Danville Ca
Enrolls at University of Oregon September 2006-- through 2009 : major is Museum Studies, Liberal Arts
Student at Diablo Valley College 2008/2009 , 321 Golf Club Road, Pleasant Hill , Ca 2008
Meets Navy Recruiter Travis Volking at 924 Murieta Blvd. Livermore, CA , Navy Recruiting Station (Lilly knew him from Monte Vista High School)
Signs Navy preliminary paperwork June 2009 October 8, 2009 with Alexander R. Kerkow CPT Operations Officer at Mountain View, CA. Recruiting Office
Takes Navy Medical Examination August 19th, 2009 with Dr. R.J. Blasi MD, CMO reviewing officer
Meets neighbor Rear Admiral W. Gorman USN at 46 Willow View Court Danville (I met him at a Danville Veteran’s Hall donor event) August 21, 2009 for advice
Reports to Navy Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes , Ill. September 23, 2009
Graduates Boot Camp November 20,2009; graduates as Petty Officer E 3
Attends Anti-Missile School two years at Great Lakes Naval Station 2019 to 2010 graduates October 15, 2010 Fire Controlman Class “A” School at Center for Surface Combat Systems Unit (P.G. Dodson Director Combat Systems “ A” School
Assigned to San Diego Naval Station
Served on USS Rushmore LSD (launched May 1989 home base San Diego California)
USS Rushmore 5th Fleet Captain: Commander Brian Finnman first Captain
Serves with crew on the MK Phalanx Close-In Weapons System (CIWS) a fast-reaction, rapid-fire 20 millimeter gun system that provides terminal defense or last line of defense.
First Deployment January 2013 with Commander James Robinson: Ports of Call include Pearl Harbor, Darwin Australia, East Timor, Aqaba Jordon ( visits Petra Jerash Ammin Ruins ), Bahrain and Persian Gulf, Hong Kong; participates in duty off Somalia Coast , Red Sea,
Awarded Department of the Navy “ Navy And Marine Corps Achievement Medal” by Commander J.T. Robinson of USS Rushmore April 4th, 2013 to Fire Controlman Lillian M. Del Beccaro
Deployed June 17 through August 12, 2014 to Hawaii for RIMPAC (Rim of the Pacific Exercise) with USS Rushmore Captain: Commander Thomas Stephens with ships of 22 nations and 49 ships
Advances in rank January 2014 after going to ”C School”
Engaged to Christopher Vaughn on March 2005 in San Diego ,CA
Father Edward Del Beccaro on tiger cruise May 3 2013 flying to Pearl Harbor, then sailing to San Diego with Commander Brian J. Finnman, Lieutenant Commander Michael S. Stucky and Foy M. Harris as Commander Master Chief
Marries Petty Christopher R. Vaughn Powell, Tennessee June 23, 2012
Deploys off Mexico in June 2014 for joint patrols with US Coast Guard & Mexican Navy for Drug Interdiction
Second Deployment 2015 : ports of Call include Pearl Harbor, Bahrain & Persian gulf; participates in refugee rescue in Pacific Ocean off Malaysia en route to Persian Gulf
Musters out of Navy September 23, 2015 with Rank of Fire Controlman Petty Officer Second Class
Joins Reserves October 2015
Christopher R. Vaughn
- Born July 1, 1985 Los Angeles then moved with parents to Powell Tennessee
- Went to Claxton Elementary School in Powell Tennessee
- Went Clinton Middle School and Clinton High School in Powell Tennessee
- Attends Boot Camp May 2009 and Great Lakes Naval Station graduates spring 2011
- First stationed San Diego , then Sasebo Japan on the USS Denver LTD 9 and then back to SD in Sept. 2014 on the cruiser Cape St. George CG711 till present
- Awarded Department of Navy "Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal" September 20012
- Current rank is E5 Fire Control man Petty Officer Second Class
- Parents Tony(deceased ) and Eden Vaughn
- sister is Antonette Wilson and brother is Will Vaughn
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Navy, PO3 Joshua Micheal Moroles
I have always wanted to join the military for as long as I remember, but it wasn’t until I was 14 when I decided I wanted to join the Navy. a huge part of the reason was because three generations before me were in the Navy my Great Grandpa Bud, Grandpa Mike and my Uncle Chad! I grew up hearing the stories of their time in the Navy and I knew that's what I had to do. When I joined I was placed as a cook after not making it through Navy Seal Training due to injury and I was stationed on the USS Russell DDG 59 and USS Halsey DDG 97 in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. I didn’t like cooking too much so I decided to try out to become a Rescue Swimmer and loved it! So ever since I have been doing search and rescue operations and training future rescue swimmers, along with that I became the head stretcher bearer (medic) on my ship and a leading member of the medical training team as well as a member of the Flying Squad (fire fighting response team). I served on board those ships for three and a half years. I also did and 8 month deployment where we operated in the Asian Pacific Ocean where we had port visits in Guam, Singapore, Sasebo Japan, The Philippines, Yokosuka Japan, and Thailand.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt Aaron Long
- Concord Vet's Center hosts 50th Anniversary of Vietnam War
The Concord Vet Center, hosted by Maurice Delmer, would like to invite all Vietnam Veterans to a Welcome Home Ceremony on May 2, 2015 in honor of the 50th anniversary of the start of the Vietnam War.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF Senior Airman Isaac Jordon St Tours
Isaac is a fire fighter in the Air Force, He was Born in Los Gatos 7/19/1989 but spent most of his life growing up in Gig Harbor Washington, Came to live with me when he was 15 and stayed until he joined the Air force when he was 19, he got Married 6/6/2010 and has a 3 yrs old son named Conner, He has three younger sisters named Emily, Shannon and Rhiannon a younger brother named Matthew, 2 younger stepbrothers named Blake and Nick...He was stationed at Beale Air Force Base, after firefighter training school then he was deployed to Kuwait and when the crisis in Syria got heated up he was moved to Jordan on the Syrian border, when he returned he was only home 3 weeks, then sent to Gussan, South Korea where he has been there for the last 18 months
- Sentinels of Freedom Annual Gala Dinner Fundraiser Event
Please take a minute and watch this video of USMC Cpl. Kyle Carpenter, MOH recipient,
Mike Conklin, founder of Sentinels of Freedom, will be hosting their "Gala Dinner" on March 28th.
and will have Sentinel' Kyle Carpenter be the keynote speaker, I've known Mike for many years,
he has helped over 180 seriously wounded veterans assimilate back into society,
I've attended many of these fundraisers, I cannot think of a better local org. to support.[Mike Conklin] I hope you’ll join me at this event
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sergeant First Class, Stephen Maxfield
US Army, Sergeant First Class, Stephen Maxfield
How many years in service
National Guard Oct 88 to Jan 2001
Army Reserve March 2005 to present
9-11-2007 to 07-06-2008
ORDERED TO ACTIVE DUTY IN SUPPORT OF IRAQ
FREEDOM 10 VSC 1-2302
SERVED IN A DESIGNATED
IMMINENT DANGER PAY AREA/ /SERVICE in KUWAIT, / AFGHANISTAN 20070911-20080706
2009 – JFCC Joint Forces Cyber Command Camp Parks
SRP Team Camp Parks 2012- 2014
March 2014 – March 2015 Kuwait/Afghanistan
25S30 SATCOM SYS OP/MAINT – 4 YRS 1 MOS
1 ST30 UH-60 Helicopter REP – 20 YRS 1 MOS
67V30 OBSN/SCOUT HEL REP 18 YRS 1 MOS
67N30 UH-1 Helicopter REP – 12 YRS 11 MOS
Excellence in Competition Rifleman Badge
ARMY Commendation Medal
Army Achievement Medal (3)
Army Good Conduct
Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal
National Defense Service Medal (2)
Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal
Non- Commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon
Army Service Ribbon
Overseas Service Ribbon
Army Reserve Component Overseas Training Ribbon
Armed Forces Reserve Medal w/ M Device
Aircraft Crewman Badge
Meritorious service medal
NATO campaign ribbon
Afghanistan campaign ribbon
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LCpl. Andres Serrano
On Friday the 19th, the WWR had the opportunity to help LCpl. Andres Serrano’s family welcome him back to the Bay Area for Christmas when we met them at SFO for a flag line and an escort back to Lafayette. This wasn’t the first time we’ve met Andres as he was part of the US Naval Sea Cadet Corps-Diablo Squadron prior to joining the Marines in November of 2013. He is currently serving in Washington DC as USMC Color Guard safeguarding our National colors. Friday, we were able to welcome him home and escort his friends and family back home for a few days of R & R; but we’re not done with him.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, Father and Son, US Army Sgt. Garrett Blank, SSgt. Ken Blank
Sergeant Garrett Blank:
Grew up in Danville, Attended SRV where he was active with Youth in Government and elected to a board position his senior year. He played ice hockey, lacrosse, football and wrestled. Garrett attended Cal Poly SLO (2010-2012) where he served with ROTC and majored in Business Agriculture. He enlisted in the US Army July 2012 and was stationed at Ft. Benning, GA for his Infantry training and then Airborne School. He was then stationed at Ft. Bragg, . He then deployed to Afghanistan from February 2014 to November 2014 with the 82nd Airborne as an Paratrooper and within his Platoon, he was the CLS (Combat Lifesaver) assisting the medic and was also appointed the SDM (Squad Designated Marksman). Upon their return, he was promoted to Sergeant in December 2014 and will be attending WLC (Warrior Leadership Course) upon his return to Ft. Bragg in January. After the leadership course, Garrett will be entering course to complete his training as a Green Beret.
Staff Sergeant Ken Blank:
Recent training includes, Airborne School, Master Course and has deployed recently to the Middle East with an upcoming deployment in 2015.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy SN David Stanwood
David Rae Stanwood III started his freshman year of high school in 2005. He was awarded Most Valuable Player sophomore year in wrestling. He participated in leadership his senior year. He graduated from high school in 2009.
David wasn't sure what he wanted to do after high school so he enrolled in Los Medanos College. After attending college for about a year and a half he decided to join the Navy.
David entered boot camp in Great Lakes, IL September 2012. He was promoted to E3 during boot camp.
Shortly after boot camp David was assigned to the USS George W.H. Bush (CVN 77) aircraft carrier as an undesignated seaman.
The USS George W.H. Bush (CVN 77) aircraft carrier was deployed in February, 2014 to the Arabian Gulf.
During deployment they had the opportunity to visit Greece, Turkey, Dubai, and Bahrain.
George H.W. Bush was supporting maritime security operations, strike operations in Iraq and Syria as directed, and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility.
The sailors were also able to jump off an aircraft elevator during swim call aboard the USS George W.H. Bush while in the Arabian Gulf.
David currently works in the deck department ordering supplies for the department. He is planning to obtain his bachelor degree while enlisted.
- Happy Birthday RAY!!
What a beautiful day to celebrate Ray's 80th Birthday! with all he does to give of himself for others, it was nice to show him we care and love him very much!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Kevin Graham
I joined the Army my senior year of high school and I left for BCT on June 26th 2012 after graduating Berean Christian High School.
The recruiter didn't tell me much about what I was going to do nor did I really know what to expect when I enlisted and selected my MOS, 15R Apache Helicopter Repairer. I wanted to surprise myself really. I didn't know much about the military at all when I joined; some distant relatives have been in the military but I only knew what friends and co-workers of my parents told me and pretty much just the things you see on TV and in movies. I still laugh sometimes when I remember the first day at Ft. Jackson, North Carolina for my basic training. I was trying so hard to pay attention to the drill sergeant explaining to us how to put the patches on our uniforms. I made it through Basic training without any obstacles as well as AIT in Ft Eustis, VA where I learned the basic mechanic skills to maintain an Apache Helicopter. It wasn't until I was assigned to my unit in Ft Hood, TX where I really started learning my job and making a few good friends along the way. I was moved up from Delta Company to Alpha Company and became a crew chief. I was at Ft. Hood for about 8 months when my unit received orders to deploy to Afghanistan within two weeks. We were part of an advance team that attached to a Blackhawk unit from the Northwest.
As soon as we landed in country we began working on the six aircraft that we were assigned that sadly were too broken to fly a mission. Throughout the entire deployment my aircraft as well as the entire company of aircraft never missed a mission due to mechanical failure. While I was deployed I was promoted from Private First Class to Specialist on an early waiver. I had some incredible, unforgettable experiences and some good times there too. Some days I wish I could go back to the simplicity of life there. I returned stateside on June 29th after serving 9 months at Kandahar & Shindand Air Bases.
I feel honored and grateful to serve our country. I still love every second of my life whether in Afghanistan, Texas or wherever else I end up while serving these next 4 years.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SPC. Jeremy Scott
Spc. Jeremy Scott
I'm a very patriotic person, I love my Country and I wanted to do something to give back. I enlisted right out of high school in 2012, in order to do just that. I wanted to protect my family and friends, which lead to my choice of job as an Infantryman. To serve my Country was a dream and a goal to complete high school and continue to do great thing in the US Army.
I left to basic combat training in July of 2012, and while at Fort Benning Georgia I learned how to work as a unit, weather it was a team of four men or a company of 200 men. I was appointed as Squad Leader while in Basic Combat Training. Doing so it taught me responsibility and how to lead under pressure. I was also trained in military techniques, strategy and weaponry.
I was deployed to East Afghanistan, with my Infantry Company. Our main mission was to provide security for my area of operation. It included patrols on foot, in vehicles, pulling guard to include searching vehicles, local nationals entering the base. Also acting as the quick reaction force (QRF) for our men on missions, US Army ODA (Operational Detachment Alpha or Special Forces), US Navy SEALS, and Romanian Special Forces.
Before Deploying I was licensed to Drive a MAXXPRO, up-armored military truck, trained in shooting the m240 machine gun, the M4 carbine, the M14 enhanced battle rifle (sniper) and the M320 grenade launcher. While in Afghanistan I drove lead vehicle on all of our convoys, and served as a grenadier on our dismounted missions. I was trained to carry my weight which consisted of 270 5.56 rounds in 9 magazines, 24 40 mm grenades, my body armor, water and food, along with both of my weapon systems. I trained physically as well as mentally, to be prepared to face enemy, and react to contact as well as how to interact with local afghans.
Ever since I can remember, I played with toy soldiers and soldiers became a role model. I decided that the army is what I wanted to do when my older cousin Andrew enlisted in the army and I saw what a great man he became. He set a great example and I looked up to him, knowing that if I put in the same effort, I could become as great as him.
During my deployment in Afghanistan I earned an Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Overseas Medal, along with a more prestigious Army Commendation Medal and the NATO service medal. My ARCOM was awarded for exceptionally meritorious service as a grenadier in a combat zone under the most extreme circumstances. (look up ranking of arcom in army medal ranking)
For my first two years I breathed, lived, and ate as an Infantryman. Now I would like to gain more knowledge in other fields. Currently I'm trying to obtain a slot in MLARM (Military Leadership Advanced Rifle Marksmanship) to become an Instructor in Air assault, to be qualified to repel out of helicopters and rig helicopters with equipment correctly.
Someday I wish to serve our city as a police officer.
- Welcome Home Celebration for Three USAF Servicemembers,
Senior Airman Bryce Chilcote
Staff Sergeant Sean Murphy (and
Staff Sergeant Adam Netzel (who
was my Flight Chief) and his wife
They are all currently stationed at Beale Air Force Base, they are all Active Duty
Senior Airman Chilcote made
Airman of the Month while he was there (in Afghanistan) and
SSgt Murphy and SSgt Netzel also made Non-Commissioned
Officer of the Month also (for the 361st Expeditionary
Reconnaissance Squadron). It was due directly to all
of their work Coalition
Forces were able to interdict, capture and kill Improvised
Explosive Device (IED) makers, emplacers and other
specialists who were endangering those stationed at Kandahar
Air Field, Afghanistan as well as Taliban guerilla
leadership fighting Coalition Forces in the field.
- 1st. Annual San Ramon Valley Swearing in Ceremony
Thanks to all of you who attended last night’s very successful 1st Annual San Ramon Valley Military Swearing in Ceremony .
We’ll get John Reese to match up the pictures with the names and then create a photo album for the parents and recruits.
Several people commented to me last night that we should do this each and every year. I agree and we will. Of course there will be a need for a lot of hand holding .
I held hands with a lot of folks last night . Seriously, this was a great event because all played a positive part, the Recruits themselves in making the decision to join the military, the Recruiters in guiding them into the right slots, the parents who raised these great kids , the community leaders , Veterans groups, Blue Star Moms. We all held hands last night in wishing success and safe return to this 2014 Cohort of High School Graduates joining the military from our 4 High Schools.
Now that we know their names and faces , we’ll be able to better track them and support them and their families, which I think is our responsibility as a community to those who serve us .
The following Graduating High School Students were Honored and sworn in by their Officers of their respective Branches.
United States Army
· US Army / Tyler Jachowski – California High School – Sworn in by Brigadier General Barton Gilbert US Army Ret.
United States Navy
· US Navy / Jordan Grabarrek – San Ramon Valley High School – Sworn in by Rear Admiral Robert Tiernan US Navy Ret.
· US Navy / Toby Solis- California High School – Sworn in by Rear Admiral Robert Tiernan US Navy Ret.
United States Air Force
· USAF Derek Leugan - California High School - Sworn in by USAF 1st Lt . William Harris
· USAF Alfred Komlev – Dougherty Valley High School – Sworn in by-USAF 1st Lt . William Harris
· USAF Justin Lindin - California High School –Sworn in by - USAF 1st Lt . William Harris
United States Marine Corps
USMC / Austinn Schmidigwood – Dougherty Valley High School – Sworn in by – USMC Capt. Melanie Clifton
USMC / David Pinto - San Ramon Valley High School – Sworn in by USMC Capt. Melanie Clifton
USMC / Jarad Toth - San Ramon Valley High School – Sworn in by USMC Capt. Melanie Clifton
USMC/ Dominic Lopez - California High School
USMC Calin Jensen - San Ramon Valley High School – Sworn in by USMC Capt. Melanie Clifton
Again , I thank all of you for attending and helping in the organizing of the event.
Very best, Mike Conklin
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Nicholas Schiavone
My brother Nicholas is 19 years old. He has been in the marines ever since he graduated High School. Nick has always wanted to be a marine ever since he was in middle school. He loves serving his country and is so proud in doing it! Nicholas was born 2/08/94 and has a mom named Robin and a dad named Rick. He has an older sister (me) who is 24 years old who has a son named Ryan who loves his uncle Bubba more than anything. Nicks nephew says he wants to be a marine when he grows up just like his uncle Bubba! Nick is also recently married they just had their one year wedding anniversary. They both currently live down south on base at camp Pendleton. Nick just recently was deployed to Afghanistan and has finally returned home on April 30! He was deployed for eight months! The longest eight months of our lives. We are so thankful for all that he sacrificed as well as all our men and woman currently over seas sacrificing the same things as well! My brother is my hero and I want to do something very special for him to show him my appreciation as well as our cities appreciation!
- 2014 6th Annual "Walk of Honor" Event
This annual tribute to our veterans is hosted and sponsored by Phillips 66 - San Francisco Refinery / Rodeo & Carbon Plant. The event draws elected officials & others from all levels of government who attend - providing their active support recognizing our military & veterans.
Vice-Admiral Jody Breckenridge, USCG (ret) will be a guest speaker during the luncheon.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Sgt. Brandon Hyman
Sgt Brandon Hyman
Brandon attended basic training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina in 2008, then went on to Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, for AIT training as a Track Vehicle Mechanic. In 2009, Brandon was selected for an extended training program in Track Vehicle Recovery and then assigned to the 101st Airborne at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Brandon deployed to Afghanistan in May of 2010, where he served at Camp Blackhorse, near Kabul and then at Camp Gamberi, in Jalalabad. Just 3 weeks before Brandon was scheduled to return home, his base was hit and several of his brothers in the 101st were killed.
In 2012, Brandon reenlisted and was transferred to Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. He became part of the 77th Engineering Company. Three months later, he was again deployed to Afghanistan. This time to Camp Leatherneck, in the southern Kandahar area.
Brandon will be going on to his next assignment reporting to Germany in July 2014, for a 3 year assignment. He was notified that shortly after the relocation, he will be deploying to Kuwait for 9 months.
During Brandon’s AIT training, he met a National Guard Wheeled Vehicle Mechanic trainee, named Amanda Colbeck. They are married and have 2 beautiful little girls, Kylie and Bryane.
Brandon also has a younger brother, CTTSN Michael Keane, serving in Naval Intelligence, currently assigned to the USS Chosin stationed in Pearl Harbor.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC 1st.Lt. Leigh Wolf
Lt. Leigh Noah Wolf -
Leigh was raised in Lafayette, went to Happy Valley Elementary, Stanley Middle School,
Acalanes High School and Las Lomas High School. Where he graduated in 2004. While he was
in high school he started and internship at KTVU Channel 2, which he held until 2007. He worked
every year for a week at an orphanage in Mexico and was a youth counselor at a summer camp.
After high school he went to San Francisco State where he studied Broadcast Journalism and
Political Science. While at SF State he was very involved in the College Republican Club. He
held various positions within the California College Republicans including Co-Chair and
Secretary and was named “College Republican of the Year.”
In 2006 Leigh ran for California State Assembly of California, he received over 20,000 votes.
Much to the chagrin of his mother, Leigh enlisted in the Marine Corp Reserve in the spring of
2008. He was stationed at the 4th Marine Logistics Group, until he was accepted for Officer
Candidate School. He graduated from OCS in April 2010. Then, he returned to his reserve unit
and participated in several Temporary Duty Assignments.
In March 2012 Leigh Left for his first tour in Afghanistan. He was assigned to 1st Marine Logistics
Group, CLR-15, 1st Maintenance Battalion, GSMT Company where is was a Platoon
Commander. He returned in September 2012.
He was home for less than a year when he approached his mom and told her to sit down. She
knew what was coming... he was going back! He left for training at Camp Lejeune in March of
2013 and headed to Afghanistan for his second tour in July of 2013. He was assigned to
Combat Logistics Battalion 6 as the Executive Officer. He returned to the US on January 29 and
came home on February 6th.
It’s important to note that Lt. Wolf volunteered for both of his deployments,
Folks, it turns out, I met Leigh many years ago when he would come to our 9-11 events on the 680-24 bridge,
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF Capt.David Yuers
USAF Capt. David Yuers
Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, 1999, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California
Associate of Arts, Liberal Arts, 1994, Victor Valley College, Victorville, California
Associate of Science, Aircraft Armament Systems, 1991, Community College of the Air Force, Maxwell AFB, Alabama
US MILITARY SERVICE
US AIR FORCE, 08/1982-08/1992, Rank: E-5, Staff Sergeant
CALIF AIR NATIONAL GUARD, 09/1994-03/2004, Rank: E-6 Technical Sergeant
US AIR FORCE RESERVE, 04/2004-Present, Rank: O-3E, Captain
At the present time he is part of the 547th Intelligence Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada
• Decorated Iraq veteran
• Deployed to Turkey, Kuwait, Iraq, South Korea and Djibouti.
HONORS, AWARDS, RECOGNITIONS
• Company Grade Officer of the Quarter, 2010, RAF Molesworth, UK.
• Air Force Commendation Medal
• Army Commendation Medal
• Air Force Achievement Medal
• Joint Achievement Medal
• Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
• Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
• Air Force Outstanding Unit Award (with Valor)
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LCpl. Isaac Marker
Lcpl Isaac Marker USMC, MOS is Motor Transport/ CROW weapon system operator, he is with CLB 6 out of Camp LeJeune, NC. Graduate boot camp Aug 2012 and completed his first tour in Afghanistan for 7 months. Isaac's full unit is Combat Logistics Regiment 25, 2nd Marine Logistics Group. Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, N.C.
Graduate from Marine Corps Boot Camp San Diego, CA. Aug 2012. Completed Motor Transport School at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri., Reported to Camp Lejeune, NC in 2013. Operating several different tactical vehicles, became a CROW Weapon System Operator, Deployed to Afghanistan July 2013. Conducted multiple successful missions, completed 7 month tour.
Isaac will return to his home base to Camp Lejeune, NC
Isaac's Dad, (Brent), also a marine, is the Huey pilot, and California Highway Patrol Officer.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. Austin Brilz
Austin was born in Vallejo June 22, 1991... Grew up in Concord from the age of 5... Played youth football and baseball ... Went to Silver wood... and Ayers Elementary Schools ... El Dorado Middle School and Graduated from Concord High School in 2009... He played football there and also did cheerleading with the competition team ... The girls talked him into doing it because they wanted to do the bigger better stunts that only teams with boys can do... They placed 1st at the National level competitions ...he was to play football for Laney Jr College when in July 5, 2009.... He said "mom, we need to talk" where he asked my blessing to join the Army... Knowing a life filled doing what your passionate about is better than a long life unfulfilled I reluctantly gave my blessing and he signed with the Army a week later and left for OSUT (one service unit training for Infantry) in Oct 2008 for Ft BENNING GA where he graduated infantry in Feb 2010... Was stationed in FT Drum where he deployed 3 weeks after arriving, to Kandahar Afghanistan ..where he received his Combat Infantry Pin... Also, as an infantry soldier in a Cav unit he was awarded a cavalry hat and spurs ...Austin also attended Air assault School ... He had received metals and awards including good conduct... during his 4 yrs ... He leaves the Army at the rank of a Sgt. Austin plans on going to school and working towards a career as a Firefighter.
Austin's awards. Medals and ribbons
Afghanistan campaign medal with campaign star, army commendation medal, army achievement medal, army good conduct medal, national defense service medal, global war on terrorism medal, non commissioned officer professional development ribbon, army service ribbon, overseas service ribbon, NATO medal, combat infantryman badge, air assault badge, expert marksmanship badge with rifle bar
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Michael Burrow
PFC Michael Burrow
Michael attended Mt Diablo High School and graduated in 2012
Michael joined the Mount Diablo High School, JROTC program in his Freshman year.
(Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps)
Michael won Cadet of the year his Junior year
Graduated JROTC Command Sergeant Major his Senior Year
Michaels Army career to date:
Joined United States Army 7-23-2012, 11 Bravo with the Ranger option
OSUT One Station Unit Training Ft Benning Georgia graduated 11-11-12
Airborne Jump School completed 12-2-12
RASP, Ranger Assessment and Selection Program 8 weeks Graduated 3-1-2013
Stationed Fort Benning Georgia, 3rd Ranger Battalion
Afghanistan deployed August 2013 thru December 2013
Medals and awards:
Airborne Jump Wings
National Defense Medal
Army Commendation Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal
3rd Ranger Battalion Combat Scroll
Expert Marksman Badge
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Brandon Bascom
Brandon V.H. Bascom
Graduated Heritage High School in June 2011
Played Heritage Baseball and loves to golf
Worked at Deer Ridge & Shadow Lakes golf courses prior to joining the Army. His love for Country was his driving force into joining the U.S. Army. He is very excited to be deploying and putting his skills into action.
Joined the Army May 2012 went through basic training at Ft. Benning, GA
Following basic training, He was stationed at Ft. Bragg, NC where he currently resides.
Brandon has earned the German Badge for Military Proficiency in early 2013 Brandon will be leaving in Jan. for his deployment to the Syrian border for security detail.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Kiley Jones and USMC Pfc. Sterling Jones
PFC Sterling Scott Jones
Sterling attended Concord High School for his Freshman thru Junior year then decided he wanted to get an early jump on his Marine military career so he enrolled @ Horizons CIS and graduated in late November 2012 with a 4.0 GPA.. Sterling worked as a pizza maker for Mary's Pizza Shack in Walnut Creek.
Sterling entered Marine boot camp in San Diego on March 2, 2013 at the young age of 17.5. He went in as a Private and was ceremoniously promoted to Private First Class. He was a Squad Leader during Boot Camp. He also earned Expert Riflery pin.
After boot camp, Sterling went to School of Infantry in Oceanside, California for another 90 days of intense training. After graduating from SOI he joined his existing company in Hawaii where he will be stationed for the next 3.3 years.
Sterling was honored in the Marines 238th birthday ceremony because he is the youngest Marine on the Hawaii base.
Sterling will be going on his first deployment in late May early June 2014 to Japan, Korea & Mongolia,China.
Sterling has always wanted to be a Marine since the young age of 12. He is very focused and honorable. He is a true Marine through and through.
PFC Kiley Nicole Jones
Kiley attended Ygnacio Valley high School and graduated in June 2007. Kiley was very into sports especially track and field where she truly excelled. She has been running track since the young age of 5. Kiley went DVC for sports trainer & sports Med. Kiley took her EMT course to prepare her for her future in the medical field.
Kiley worked as a sprinting coach @ Carondelet for 2 years then a coach for YVHS for a year. Kiley also worked for the Alzheimer facility in Berkeley before deciding to go for the Army full speed ahead.
Kiley entered Fort Leonard Wood on August 26, 2013. Kiley was given the honor to MC her graduation and she wrote a very moving speech. Kiley graduated from Army Basic November 7th and went straight to San Antonio, Texas to attend 68W school. Kiley is training to be a combat medic. After graduation next April she hopes to go over seas.
Kiley is what we call our miracle daughter because she had contacted a heart virus when she was 15 and wasn't suppose to live so with her 2nd chance on life Kiley decided it was time to give back. Thus this is the reason for her entering the Army and going in the medical field so she can give back to her fellow battle buddies.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Pfc. Benjamin Green
PFC Green, Benjamin T.
Ben was born in San Jose, California. DOB: 11/02/91
He has two older half sisters Lacey & Niki and one younger sister Hannah.
Ben lived in San Jose for seven years prior to moving to Castro Valley in Sept of 1998.
He was a very talented athlete playing both soccer and baseball where me made many
friends. He attended Independent Elementary School, Canyon Middle School, and
graduated Castro Valley High School in 2010.
Besides Ben stating when he graduated kindergarten that he wanted to be a race car
driver he has also expressed an interest in the military by either ﬁnding objects to make
play weapons with or watching the military channel for hours on end. Ben attended
Grizzly Youth Academy for 6 months where he truly found himself enjoying the structure
and hard work that the military requires.
Like his Dad (Pvt. Green, Thomas E) a Vietnam Vet who served July 5, 1967 - Jan 25,
1969 in the 99th Infantry Brigade that we lost in 2004, Ben decided to join the Army.
Ben began his journey reporting to Fort Benning, Georgia on May 15th 2012 to become
a Cavalry Scout with 132 other young men where he could be out front of every single
force to ﬁnd the enemy. After graduating basic training Ben was assigned to the
4th Brigade Combat Team 101st Airborne Division which he was “very” familiar with
after watching the Band of Brothers movies over and over. This was nothing less of a
dream come true for Ben. Here he was trained in the heat and the cold and was sent to
Air Assault school and taught to repel from helicopters. In October 2012 Ben earned his
Air Assault Wings.
In March of 2012 Ben & his troop deployed to the Khost Province Afghanistan (Camp
Clark) to participate in Operation Enduring Freedom. While deployed he was appointed
as the Senior Scout Driver knowing every detail of each mission while scouting for IED’s
for the ﬁrst four months. Then he became dismount carrying a M249 SAW machine
where his job became a gunner to lay down surpressive ﬁre in order to keep the tail and
head down .
Ben returned to Ft. Campbell Kentucky on October 30th 2013 while he continues to
train so he can be ready for deployment at a moments notice anywhere in the world.
Ben has received an Army Commendation Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with
one star, Driver’s Badge, Gold Spurs, one overseas stripe, and NATO Medal.
- USMC Cpl. Alex Beatty
Cpl Alex Beatty graduated from Foothill High School in 2007. In May 2009, he enlisted with the United States Marine Corps and arrived at the Recruit Training Depot in San Diego (boot camp) on December 1, 2009. After graduation from boot camp, Alex completed his Marine Combat Training at Camp Pendleton and was assigned his Military Occupational Speciality of Motor Transportation Operator.
Motor transport operators operate tactical wheeled vehicles and equipment, transporting troops and cargo in support of combat and garrison operations. They also perform crew/operator level maintenance and maintain all associated tools and equipment for assigned vehicles. The training for his MOS took him to Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri where he finished first in his class. Upon completion of his training, Alex was assigned to the Marine Wing Support Squadron 372 at Camp Pendleton in Oceanside, CA where he continued to serve until completion of his active duty on November 12, 2013.
Being a Marine is extremely challenging – both physically and mentally; however Alex was always able to find the lighter side of a situation and shared many stories of his adventures. While in boot camp, Alex wrote to us regularly and one of our favorite stories took place during weapons training. While Alex had never fired a weapon of any kind prior to enlisting, he excelled in this area. One day his Range Coach approached him during training and said “Son, you’re doing extremely well with your weapon. Have you ever fired a weapon before?” And Alex respectively replied “No sir! But I’m pretty good with a Super Soaker!” The coach couldn’t help but smile.
Alex will be attending Las Positas College in January where he will study business. We are so happy to have him home and excited to see where the next phase of his life will take him.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USN Lt. Nathan Emory Scott
Nate attended Alamo School for his elementary years, then Los Cerros Middle School, followed by Monte Vista High School. During his school years, he participated in basketball, karate and swim team. He and a mercifully brief encounter with the trumpet, too. He played freshman football at Monte Vista and became the Co-Editor of the school newspaper. He was appointed to the Contra Costa County Youth Commission and was selected to attend a Youth Leadership program in Washington, DC. He participated in Scouting, including helping to lead several fifty mile hikes and attained the rank of Eagle Scout.
After completing four college courses while still in high school, he earned a full four year NROTC scholarship and was accepted to the University of Southern California. He held various leadership positions in his NROTC unit. He graduated from USC in 2007 with a degree in Business Administration and was commissioned the same day as an Ensign in the United States Navy.
Nate was accepted to Naval Flight Training and was stationed in various locations in Pensacola, Florida; Corpus Christi, Texas; and Meridian, Mississippi as he progressed thorough his ground and initial flight training, learned to fly the T-38 turboprop trainer, then the T-45 jet trainer before he was awarded his Wings of Gold as a Naval Aviator. He excelled at each stage of his training and was then competitively selected to fly the F/A-18 Super Hornet fighter. He reported to VFA-106 at Oceana Naval Air Station, in Virginia Beach, Virginia for that training over the next year. In 2010, he was then assigned to his first fleet squadron: VFA-103, the Jolly Rogers, also based at Oceana.
During the next two years, Nate trained with his squadron to prepare for deployment. His training included advanced air to air combat and also strike air to ground warfare. On June 1, 2012 Nate married Caitlin in a very small family wedding in Tucson, then they moved to Virginia Beach before he left with the USS Eisenhower battle group for an extended deployment 19 days later on June 20th. Nate and the battle group conducted many missions during that deployment, including allied operations in the Mediterranean and presence operations in the Arabian Gulf off the coast of Iran. He was selected to be one of four Navy fighter pilots to exercise with the Egyptian Air Force; that training was completed just days before the Egyptian uprising began. The majority of his time was spent in air operations over Afghanistan in support of allied military ground forces. His typical day consisted of a lengthy flight from the carrier across Pakistan to reach Afghanistan, then hours flying over Afghanistan with at least two mid-air refueling missions (usually at night), before the return flight back to the carrier and landing at sea. Nate completed more than 250 carrier landings during that deployment, and spent a total of more than one year at sea aboard Eisenhower, including the deployment and the workup training.
In addition to his duties as a fighter pilot, Nate was also selected as a Landing Signal Officer (LSO) by his squadron. The role of an LSO is to carefully watch the other pilots as they fly toward the carrier during their final approach, and to talk to the pilots by radio to adjust their approaches help them to land safely and successfully aboard the carrier. Sometimes the LSO has to abort the pilot’s landing and tell the pilot to make another attempt for safety reasons. This is a vital job of skill and trust and is usually given to the top tier of pilots who are also willing to spend many added hours on the small LSO platform on the outside rear edge of the carrier’s flight deck to perform these demanding duties, often in adverse weather conditions. Nate performed these duties superbly in addition to all of his regular duties and missions as an F/A-18 pilot and attained qualification as a “Wing LSO” during his deployment, which means he can now serve as the most senior LSO for the entire airwing embarked aboard a carrier at sea.
Nate has been awarded several military decorations, which include the Air Medal.
As the ten month deployment ended, Nate was able to take leave as the Eisenhower was returning to Norfolk so he could meet Cait in Lisbon, Portugal. They then enjoyed their long-deferred honeymoon together on a Mediterranean cruise before they returned home. On September 14th, they finally got to have their full wedding ceremony with the renewal of their vows and a wonderful celebration with family and friends, again in Tucson, before returning to their home in Virginia Beach.
Nate now has orders to report next month as a flight instructor for the F/A-18 Super Hornet with VFA-106 in Oceana.
- US Navy E-3 Corpsman Laura Marie Pearce
Laura Marie Pearce was born May 8, 1985 at John Muir Hospital, Concord, California.
Laura attended Concord High School in Concord, Calif. and graduated in 2003. Beginning at age 5, she started playing the violin and piano. Laura was very active playing music all throughout her middle and high school years. Laura participated in several bands at CHS and accompanied her band mates to Hawaii, Disneyland and several other local band competitions. One of her proudest moments was playing the piano at Carnegie Hall with Concord High School. She also traveled to Australia and New Zealand with the Young Artists Symphony Orchestra.
Laura started her college career at Diablo Valley College and after two years, transferred to Chico State University. Laura's studied nursing at Chico and graduated with a B.S degree in Nutrition.
After finding nothing but impacted Nursing schools in California, Laura decided to join the navy.
Laura joined the Navy in April of 2012. She graduated boot camp June 1st, 2012 and A-school Oct. of 2012.
Laura is presently stationed as an E3-General Corpsman at Walter Reed Military Hospital in Bethesda, MD. We are very proud of her accomplishments.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Navy HM-3 Corpman Patrick Luntey, USMC 1Lt. Geoff Marshall
USN Corpman HM-3 Patrick
Patrick Alden Luntey was born at John Muir Hospital in Walnut Creek, CA on December 2, 1992 to Clark and Emma. From a young boy he loved to laugh and play jokes, and was a standout to all who met him. You would catch him playing in the CHP squad car when his dad would come home from lunch and making his mom look for stop signs and cones so that he could "play construction" in the front yard. Every. Single. Day.
After John Knox preschool, He was in the Dublin School District. He began his elementary schooling at Nielsen - where when he was asked to draw a self portrait, he decided to draw it in white crayon on white paper and dress up as Mimi from the Drew Carey show for Halloween, a costume no one would forget. He would take up t-ball, basketball, soccer, football and the trumpet.
In Middle school Patrick attended Wells where he would get an opportunity to play the trumpet in the Disneyland Parade. He also played in the marching band throughout his middle school years.
Once he reached Dublin High School, Patrick was involved in both the Jazz band and concert. He also took up a true passion: lacrosse. His achievements got him to second team all league in 2010.
Patrick got the first job he ever applied for, with his parents consent: He decided to join the Navy in November of 2010 shortly before his 18th birthday. He attended boot camp at Great Lakes, IL. Following completion of boot camp, he entered Corpsman School the following January which was also in Great Lakes. He graduated his 19 week Corpsman School in May of 2011. Once his graduated from Corpsman School, he decided that he wanted to be assigned to a Marine unit, and at the time was transferred to Camp Pendleton, CA. Once at Pendleton, Patrick went through an intense Field Medical Training from May 2011 through July 2011. He was assigned to an artillery unit with the Marine Corps and trained with them up until they were set to deploy in july 2012. Patrick would not be sent to Afghanistan for another several months because he was reassigned to an advisory unit which would be set to deploy in April 2013. Once deployed, he arrived at Camp Leatherneck in Southwest Afghanistan in mid April. While in Afghanistan, he was involved in training Afghanistan military personnel. While stationed there, he was recognized as the youngest field medical corpsman at camp leatherneck. His tour ended in October, when he returned to camp Pendleton on October 6th.
He also learned to speak the Afghan language and is quite proficient at Dari.
USMC 1Lt. Geoff Marshall
Geoff Marshall was born and raised in Pleasant Hill and Walnut Creek. He started playing soccer when he was 5. By middle school he was skate boarding all over town. When he was 14 he was working summers in construction to save for his first car. A 68 camaro that he worked tirelessly to rebuild the engine. Geoff attended Northgate High School, by his junior year he said the heck with this and enrolled at DVC. Geoff then went on to California State University East Bay and graduated with honors. By his 3rd year in college Geoff decided he wanted to lead marines, and in 2009 went to officer candidate school graduating in the top 10 percent qualifying him for the commanding officer honor list. Geoff has received many certificates for his willingness to lead from the front and is indicative of his can do attitude and keen sense of mission accomplishment in the superior performance of his duties. 1stLieutenant Marshall’s intiative, perseverance, and total dedication are admired. Geoff has just returned home from deployment in Afghanistan. Hopefully he will now have time for his passion of surfing and rock climbing. Geoff is engaged to the love of his life for the last 8 years, Mary. They are getting married this August.
- Welcome Home celebration for US Army Capt. Nicholas Kanakis
Nicholas is a product of Pleasanton schools having attended Donlon Elementary, Pleasanton Middle School, and Foothill High School (class of 2003) where he was a member of the varsity football and wrestling teams. Nicholas received a nomination from Senator Barbara Boxer to the United States Military Academy at West Point in 2005.
Nicholas’ passion from the time he was at Donlon was to become a military aviator. During his time at West Point, he pursued his love of flying and was cadet-in-charge of the Flying Club. Nicholas received the Nye Award for Excellence in Research in Military Affairs for his work on the influence of West Point cadets on Army Aviation. He graduated from West Point in 2009 as a military history major and branched Army Aviation.
After receiving his wings at Ft. Rucker, Alabama in February, 2011, Nicholas joined Alpha Co. 4-3 Assault Helicopter Battalion at Hunter Army Airfield in Savannah, Georgia as a Blackhawk flight platoon leader. From December, 2012 through August, 2013, Nicholas was deployed with the 603rd Aviation Support Battalion at Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan. He served there as a Maintenance Platoon Leader and Blackhawk helicopter pilot-in-command. Nicholas will return to Ft. Rucker this December to attend the Captains’ Career Course.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy CS3 Petty Officer Eric Nuval
Eric attended Vallejo High School and graduated in 2007. He joined the Navy on April 6, 2008 and as a Culinary Specialist Third Class Eric Nuval served in Japan on the USS Blue Ridge, Home of the 7th Fleet. He had the responsibility for 900 plus crew member's morale through his occupation as a cook. Eric
has traveled to Russia, South Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Jakarta, Palau and New Caledonia. During his enlistment he earned 2 Navy Achievement Medals.
His other interests include a love for drawing, playing basketball, video games, and cooking. Since his completion of service with the Navy, Eric has continued his passion for the culinary arts. He now attends Le Cordon Bleu in San
Francisco and aspires to become a professional chef.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC PFC Kristopher Gallinatti
Kristopher Gallinatti was born and raised in Danville, California. He attended Green Valley Elementary School, San Ramon Valley Christian Academy, and Monte Vista High School. Kristopher earned the rank of Eagle Scout on January 19, 2012. Kris became an adult leader for Boy Scout Troop 252 in Danville. Kristopher is an avid baseball fan. His favorite team is the Oakland Athletics. Kris enjoyed attending games, as a season ticket holder, for the past 5 years. Kris umpired with San Ramon Valley Little League for 6 years.
Kris’ desire to join the military came at an early age. By age 5, Kris knew that he wanted to serve his country. Kristopher Gallinatti enlisted with the United States Marine Corps, June 2012. He was part of the delayed entry program. Upon graduating from Monte Vista High School on June 14, 2013, Kristopher entered boot camp at MCRD – San Diego. This is a 13 week training program. PFC Kristopher Gallinatti graduated from boot camp on September 13, 2013.
Kristopher will return to San Diego for 4 weeks where he will attend infantry school. He will then go to Missouri for 5 weeks where he will attend Motor Transportation training. Upon completing Motor Transportation training, Kris will receive his order, as to where he will be stationed.
PFC Kristopher Gallinatti looks forward to a career with the United States Marine Corps.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. John Martinez
United States Army: Sergeant John Martinez
Sergeant John Martinez is a US Army Infantry Soldier stationed at Fort Stewart, Georgia. He is primarily responsible for training his team and conducting operations when deployed.
John has 5 years of experience in military service, including special training in combat, marksmanship and frontline duties.
John first deployment was to Iraq, September 2009. Where he served as an operator and rifleman with the 4th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, out of Fort Lewis Washington. His second tour was to Afghanistan, October 2012, A Sergeant commanding a team from the 1st Brigade, 2nd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, out of Fort Stewart Georgia. For the numerous operations that were conducted, John was responsible to prepare his team combat ready.
Sergeant John Martinez awards include: Two Army Commendation Medals (ARCOM) for heroism in combat, Combat Infantry Badge (CIB), Army Achievement Medal (AAM) and Army Expert Shooting Badge.
In 2007, John received his High School diploma from Antioch High. He then went to Los Medanos College for a year. In 2008, John enlisted in the US Army. John and his wife Sara married on May 11, 2009 and their son Dominic was born August 13, 2011.
A native of Antioch California, John lives in Savannah, Georgia with his family. When not working, John likes to relax and catch up on sleep, enjoys spending time with his family and friends, enjoys watching the Atlanta Falcons play, coordinates a fantasy football league and likes to target shoot.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Nick Martell
Nick grew up in Pleasanton and graduated from Foothill in 2007. He loved snowboarding and target shooting,
Nick joined the Marine Corps in October 2008 as an Infantryman and was stationed at Camp Pendleton. During his service he served on two MEU deployments - one in 2010 and 2012. During these deployments Nick trained as a Rifle Expert with Marines from units in Kuwait, Jordan, South Korea, Japan, Guam, and Bahrain, among others.
Some of Nicholas' awards and ribbons are: Rifle Expert Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service and Expeditionary Medals, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Letter of Appreciation, Certificate of Appreciation, and Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal.
Nick ended his contract from the Marine Corp in September 2012 and plans to resume college in September. He will be studying Business at Sacramento State.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Nathan Hewitt
Nathan is a lifelong resident of Livermore. He graduated from Selah Christian Academy and attended Las Positas College immediately thereafter. He also achieved the Eagle Scout recognition during his high school years. After receiving clearances to enlist in the Army at age 19, Nathan endured boot camp at Fort Sill, OK and remained at that facility for his AIT training. Upon completion of those programs, Nathan moved to the Bravo Battery at Fort Stewart, GA to fulfill his three year contract. In October, 2012, he was destined to endure service in Afghanistan. During his deployment, Nathan received the Army accommodation Medal, NATO Award, Overseas Ribbon and ARCOM Award. It was also at this juncture that he committed to serve an additional three years in the military. Later this year he should move to Fort Lewis, WA.
- Our Hawaii Vacation 2013
Our vacation on the the "Big Island" summer of 2013, we went to Pahoa, on the Hilo side of Hawaii, far from white sandy beaches,
an "touristos", lots of black sand beaches, turtles, and miles of LAVA, real Hawaii
- Welcome Home for USMC LCpl. Thomas NovoGradac ll
Thomas Matthew NovoGradac II (Named after his Grandfather a Veteran in Army)
Born: 4/8/92 in Walnut Creek
Played baseball for San Ramon Little League from the time he was in 5Th grade until he graduated HS.
Tom has an uncle that was a Lieutenant Colonel in the Marine Corp. Since Tom was a little boy he had always looked up to him. Uncle Chucks influence is what I believe lead him to join this branch. For as long as his father and I can remember Tom wanted to serve his country.
Graduated California High School in 2010
Became a Marine on May 2, 2011 upon graduating boot camp. Went on to SOI (School of Infantry) and became a Machine Gunner (0331)
Stationed in Camp Lejeune, NC since October 2011.
Became part of the 3/9 (Shadow Warriors)
Deployed to Afghanistan in October 2012.
While is Afghanistan Tom was part of the "quick response team". When things when down they were there. He participated in many patrols and escorts. He received at least 4 medals:
Honestly Tom has been very tight lipped about his tour in Afghanistan. The information that I have I have received from others. I am sorry that I don't have more information to give.
His Father, sister and I are proud beyond words.
- 2013 UC Davis Commencement Graduation
Eric Welden along with his proud parents
invite you to come Celebrate Commencement Day:
Class of 2013
Bachelor of Arts in Design
College of Letters & Science
University of California Davis
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF Capt. Michael Slawski
Captain Mike “Slawdog” Slawski was born in 1985 and raised in Western Massachusetts. He attended college at Norwich University where he attained a Bachelor’s of Science in Economics. Mike also earned a varsity letter on his college’s cross-country team and served on the school’s Honor Committee. Upon graduation in 2007, Mike commissioned as a Second Lieutenant into the United States Air Force. In July 2009 Mike graduated from Joint Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training at Vance Air Force Base, OK as a Distinguished Graduate and the class’s Leadership Award. Subsequently, after receiving an assignment to fly C-5B Galaxies at Travis Air Force Base, CA, Mike graduated from the C-5 Initial Qualification Course with another Distinguished Graduate Award. Overall, Mike has flown over 1,370 hours, including 462 combat and 38 combat support, in 252 C-5 sorties, and airlifted over 11.1 million pounds of cargo. He is currently an aircraft commander and the assistant chief of the 22nd Airlift Squadron’s Pilot Training office. Likewise, in his time at Travis, Mike authored cargo pallet loading analysis, which realized potential $1.7 million in monthly savings. He also developed a cargo throughput velocity tool that has become the Air Mobility Command standard for the coming Afghan drawdown. At Travis, Mike has also earned an Air Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, and an Air Force Achievement Medal. Currently, Mike lives with his wife, Kate, and their two dogs and three cats in Martinez, CA and is completing his Master’s of Science in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. They will be moving to Las Vegas, NV later this year for his next assignment.
- 5th Annual Walk of Honor, hosted by ConocoPhillips 66
It was a beautiful sunny day for a walk over the Vallejo bridge, with the UH-1 Vietnam era helicopter over head, this marks the 5th year of " Walk of Honor" on Armed Forces Day.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF Lt. Jonathan Leetch
Lt. Jonathan Leetch graduated from Foothill High School, Pleasanton, and began ROTC while studying at San Francisco State University. Following his graduation, he was commissioned as an Air Force Officer and began his flight training and Initial Flight Screening (IFS) on the DA-20 single prop aircraft in Pueblo, CO.
After earning his wings in February, he went to Washington for Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (SERE) training. Upon the completion of his training on the MC-12 aircraft, he was deployed to Afghanistan from August 2012 to March 2013. During that time he logged over 700 combat flight hours piloting the MC-12.
Next, he’ll be in Oklahoma to train on the C-17 transport jet. He expects to be in a number of countries on various types of missions over the next several years.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Marc DePretis and US Army Spc. Nate DePretis
Corporal Marc De Pretis grew up in Pleasanton and joined the U.S. Marines shortly after graduating from high school in 2008. After his initial training at MCRD in San Diego and graduating from the School of Infantry at Camp Pendleton, Marc was assigned to the 2/7 Golf of the 1st Marine Division based in Twenty Nine Palms, CA where he continued his training. Marc has served as a team leader and a squad leader attaining his current rank of Corporal.
Marc has deployed three times. In 2010 he deployed with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit in Southeast Asia. During his first MEU Marc was a Jungle Warfare Instructor. That same year, Marc became a team leader. In 2011 he deployed a second time with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit in Southeast Asia, where he picked up Squad Leader as a Lance Corporal and picked up Corporal in June 2012. In September 2012 Marc deployed to Sangin, Afghanistan where he served as an Assistant Patrol Leader and he was one of three Vehicle Commanders. He was also one of two designated marksmen in his Platoon. During his time in Afghanistan, Marc’s Squad was successful in capturing a high value terrorist.
Marc will complete his service to his Country in August 2013 having served for five years. Marc has served his Country bravely. He has been an exemplary leader and we are tremendously proud of him.
Nate began his training for Army Infantry in Ft Benning, GA in January 2011. Upon completion of his training in April 2011, he went on to Airborne School also in Ft. Benning and graduated in May of 2011 where he was immediately assigned to the 173rd Airborne based in Vicenza, Italy.
Nate has served as a paratrooper in the Army with the 173rd Airborne for nearly two years now. Nate earned his Canadian Jump wings by jumping with the Canadian Army in Poland.
In July of 2012, Nate was deployed to Afghanistan as a Grenadier for his squad and as the Advanced Combat Life Savor for his Platoon. Within 10 days of arriving, his unit was attacked and the lives of two of his closest friends were lost. That day, Nate proved himself a hero. Nate’s squad leader, Sgt. Morrison, wrote these words when recommending him for a commendation:
“He quickly and safely maneuvered himself to support his comrades at the blast site and provided the proper lifesaving steps saving the lives of two injured Soldiers…
Under enemy fire, without regard to his own safety, he provided casualty care, shielding them while the machine gunners suppressed enemy maneuver…
He alone moved a casualty three hundred meters and loaded him in the bird, then took up a security position and defended the site for seven more hours during remains and equipment recovery, and the exploitation of the blast site. He was vital in repelling two more enemy small arms attacks during the next seven hours, exposing himself multiple times to enemy rounds to put fire on the enemy location.”
Nate has approximately 1 year remaining on his contract where he is expected to remain in Italy with the 173rd. We are exceedingly proud of our son and the man and hero that he has become.
Besides his military accomplishments, Nate has recently become the proud dad of James M. De Pretis.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC SSgt. Jason Ross
Jason Matthew Ross, was born on May 31, 1983. El Camino Hospital, Mt. View, CA
Grew up a very inquisitive an energetic young boy and developed into a young man who wanted to do something special for his country. He joined the Marines right out of high school, with an original induction date of September 11, 2001. As a result of the attack on the Towers, he was pushed out a week, and actually joined on September 17, 2001. He went through Boot Camp and was on the Color Guard for their graduation. Because he is an Eagle Scout he came out of Boot Camp with a stripe (PFC). Initially he trained and performed the duties of a disbursing clerk, and was ready to get out of the Marines until a new opportunity came along that would allow him to "play" with bombs. He volunteered for Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) in 2005 and soon after was at their training facility in Florida. He graduated as one of the top in his class and over the next five years became very good at doing his job. He was deployed to Afghanistan, to help the 3/8 Marines, since there was a great deal of trouble going on over there at the end of 2010 and into the beginning of 2011, and he quickly made a name for himself in being able to deal with the difficult aspects encountered with the job of EOD Tech. On March 7, 2011, while returning from a mission to clear a village Jason stepped on an IED, that nearly took his life. He was the fourth guy in line, but because he was the biggest and heaviest it went off when he ran across it. He lost the lower half of his body to the explosion and to the ensuing infections that came with it. The damage of that 10lbs. of explosives was so great that the doctors could hardly believe he was still alive, but then Jason is stubborn that way. The past two plus years has been dealing with his healing and recovery, and it looks like there is still another year or so that will need to be dealt with, before it is complete...
- Welcome Home US Army Pfc. James Victor Stanton
James Victor Stanton
Graduated from boot camp: Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri 12/23/11
Patches: 36 Engineer Brigade Patch (Seahorse)
MOS: 12B Combat Engineer
Awards/medals/certificates earned: NATO campaign medal, Afghan Campaign medal, Overseas ribon, Army Achievement Medal, Certificate of Achievment
James' unit: 36th En BDE, 62 EnBn PSD
Base: Fort Hood, Texas
Deployed: 8/12 - 3/13 Kandahar, Afghanistan
James Victor Stanton (born 5/4/90) is a first born twin, oldest of three brothers. He is a 2008 graduate of San Ramon Valley High School. James played baseball with Danville Little League Baseball and played CYO basketball (St. Joan). During high school, James was an assistant coach for CYO basketball. James was on the SRV Men's Varsity basketball team's coaching staff all four years as part of the management team (team manager, statitician, and videographer) under the direction of Athletic Director and head coach, John Raynor. After graduation, James attended California State University, Fullerton. During his second year of college, James decided he wanted to do more with his life and serve his country. He enlisted in the US Army.
Checkout a story in the paper from Taylor, James brother- http://www.auburnjournal.com/article/epic-mountain-climb-personal-patriotic-quest-meadow-vistan#.UQVp24whS7c.email
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LCpl. Kathryn Griswold
LCpl Kathryn “Katy” Griswold returns home to her family after serving 7-months at Camp Leatherneck, Afghanistan, with the Marine Air Control Squadron 1 (MACS-1). Katy served as Aviation Communications Systems Technician (only one of two 5939s) in all of TAOC. In a nutshell, Kathryn was responsible to analyze and isolate system malfunctions, analyze schematics, effectively utilize test measurement and diagnostic equipment, and to diagnose and repair problems with all radio systems and associated sub-assemblies that are organic to the Tactical Data Systems Maintenance Section. Kathryn was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal (NAM) Citation for her meritorious service during this deployment. She is stationed at Miramar, San Diego
Katy has been missed greatly by her family and they all look forward to their time with her during her leave. Please join us in welcoming our Kathryn home after her selfless sacrifice and service to our Country.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Kyle Eith
Kyle Lee Eith is a Specialist in the United States Army National Guard. As of February 23,2012 he was on active duty deployment and on April 15th 2012 (his 24th birthday) hit ground at Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan. He left behind his amazingly loving parents Peggy and Jeff, his sister Samantha, his finance Jessie and his perfect 2 year old son, Logan. Kyle attended Amador Valley High school right here in Pleasanton until he graduated in 2006. Ever since Kyle has been a kid he has loved the outdoors and always stays incredibly active. One could say his hobby is having hobbies. Ha. He is an experienced fisherman, has competed in dirt bikes events, loves snowboarding with a passion and his new favorite is his souped-up 2004 turbo diesel Dodge Ram. He is a man of many interests. Most of all he has a huge heart. He loves his family and his friends unconditionally and will do anything, at anytime to be there for any of them. He sacrificed a year of watching his son grow, being with his family and ultimately his freedom to fight for ours. He is and always will be an American hero. We all love him so much and are so happy to have him home safe and that we never have to say goodbye again.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Major, Luke Esposito, Capt. Matt Esposito
Luke, after a tour in Iraq four or five years ago flying his Harrier off a carrier in the Persian Gulf, was off on a MEU to Japan, then back to Yuma air station, then off to the language school down in Monterey CA for six months then off to Rota Spain as an exchange pilot with a Spanish Harrier group for three and a half years and just returned to his home base again to Yuma in May and now is coming home for Christmas with his wife, brother and sister for a great family reunion at Christmas time back to their birth place - our home.
Matt, is a Capt. now, many years ago, we welcomed home Matt, (May 18th. 2008) it was fantastic! This is the first time they will be home together in many years, and on Christmas, too!! Should be a
good one! John Esposito, (father) is also a marine, and a WWR member, so between John, Luke, and Matt, there's many, many, years of service to our country
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LCpl. Anthony Fernandes
LCPL Anthony Fernandes born 12/17/91 Granada high school graduate 2009
AJ attended Celebration Church and was a very dedicated person with the Youth group for many years as well at Cornerstone. He became a 2nd year scout and Aldo played Ultimate Frisbee with coach Carter... Very much a kind helpful person who's faith led him into the service! AJ wanted to be a firefighter and tested very high on the entry score and has a safe job with Aviation. He has schooling in
S Carolina and Camp Pendelton. AJ lived here in Livermore with both parents for all of his life. he is a very good kid, Baptized at his celebration at 18 and joined the Marines 1 yr. after high school, with the down economy, and the necessity to pay rent...He has had a very positive experience with the Marines, his job is Aviation Ordinance Vengeance 469.
Let's all come out a show our support for AJ! It's also his birthday on Dec. 17th!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army National Guard Sgt 1st. Class Frank Mitchell
We are so happy to welcome home Sgt. First Class Frank Mitchell who has recently returned home from his deployment in Afghanistan.
Frank graduated in 1988 from Arroyo High School in San Lorenzo and joined the Marine Corp shortly after graduation. While in the Corp he was a Heavy Equipment Operator with the 1st Bn 16th Reg Reserve Units in San Jose and Alameda.
He then made the career change in 2007 to join the US Army National Guard. He is with the 2668th Transportation Company based inYuba City. During his deployment in Afghanistan he was convoy commander and based at fob Shindand AB (western Afghanistan).
NOTE FROM WIFE, ANNE MARIE:
One day during deployment I was cleaning house and found some of Franks old USMC paperwork -
Principles of Leadership
1. Be technically and tactically proficient.
2. Know your self and seek self improvement.
3. Know your Marines and look out for their welfare.
4. Keep your Marines informed.
5. Set the example.
6. Ensure the taks is understood, supervised, supervised, and accomplished.
7. Develop your Marines as a team.
8. Make sound and timely decisions.
9. Developed a sense of responsibilility in your Marines.
10. Employ your Marines in accordance with its capabilities.
11. Seek responsiblity and take responsiblity for your actions.
This is Frank...this is who he is...this really is him.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Stephen Keyes
Stephen went to Vintage Hills Elementary school in Pleasanton.
His kindergarten teacher said that he was a perfect student. He was quite, polite and followed
directions well....good qualities for army life!
He went onto Harvest Park Middle school and was in the band. He was involved in scouting and
loved to go on camp outs, another plus for the military.
Stephen attended Amador High and was in the marching band, playing first clarinet then
trombone. Marching....just some more practice for the army. He then moved to Portland OR
and graduated from Wilson High.
When he told me of his plans to join the army, I was surprised. He was a cautious kid and
never even broke any bones, unlike his younger brother who has visited the ER many times.
Stephen went to boot camp at Fort Benning in GA and went onto Airborne training. The day
after his first jump Stephen made a post on Facebook and said, " I love jumping out of perfectly
good airplanes" When Stephen was to be deployed to Afghanistan, he volunteered to be on a
team that detected IED's on the roads. He once told me that they found 12 IED's in one day
and I said that he probably saved unknown amounts of fellow soldiers and civilians. During his
first year in the army, he has been promoted from PV2 to PFC and received a purple heart.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Justin Jennings
Justin enlisted into the USMC August 2008 and he just re-enlisted August 2012.
USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) 8months Feb-Oct( Helped Japans Earthquake "Tsunami Aid") then to the Gulf war last year 2011
USS Nimitz (CVN-68) 8mo Training Rim-Con Hawaii
Nimitz Leave in April 2013 Stationed; San Diego
Unit; Death Rattlers, 323
MOS; F-18 Mechanic
- 2012 Wreaths Across America, Presidio, SF
Remember. Honor. Teach.
Wreaths Across America (TM) believes it is important to teach everyone about the value of freedom, even our youngest citizens. Making time to pass along the stories and memories of heroism and sacrifice to young people will help make an important connection between the greatest generation and the next generation.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC MSgt. Gregory McLean
Master Sergeant McLean was born in Fayetteville, NC on 22 February 1969. He graduated from Hoke County High School in Raeford, NC in June 1987.
He went to Boot Camp at MCRD Parris Island, SC in December graduated from Basic Training as an Honor Graduate in February 1989
After graduation from Basic Training Parris Island SC, PFC McLean reported to Courthouse Bay in Camp Lejeune, NC for MOS training 0481 as a Basic Landing Support Specialist and graduated with honors in May 1989.
LCpl McLean then reported to 4th Longshoreman Company in Wilmington, NC where he performed his duties as 54 Embark Clerk from May 1989 to Nov 1990.
LCpl McLean then reported to Alpha Company, 1st LSB Camp Pendleton, CA where he performed his duties as a member of 1st Longshoreman Platoon and later deployed to Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm in 1991.
In November 1991, LCpl McLean reported to "A" Company, 3rd LSB Okinawa where he performed his duties as a member of 2d Longshoreman Platoon and later was assigned to MSSG-31 as a Logistics and Embarkation Marine.
In May 1994, now Sgt. McLean was transferred to Courthouse Bay as a BLSS Instructor. He was integral in the graduation of more than 1800 students
In December 1997, SSgt McLean reported to "A" Company, 3d TSB where he performed his duties as 1stPlatoon Sgt. and later as 1st Platoon Commander
In January 1999, GySgt McLean reported to l&I Staff. Concord, CA. where he performed his duties as the Ops and Training Chief.
In December 2002, GySgt McLean reported to USS CLEVELAND (LPD-7) San Diego, CA, as the CCA and deployed support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
In April 2005, GySgt McLean reported to 3d Battalion, 12th Marines Okinawa, Japan, where he performed his duties as the Logistics Chief and later as the Logistics Officer.
In January 2008, MSgt McLean, in his final tour of duty, was specifically hand selected to fill the vacant Combat Cargo Mobility Chiefs billet at newly formed LSD/LPD17 Class Squadron. He performed his duties in a selfless and admirable manner.
Master Sergeant McLean has completed 22 years of Marine Corps service and l officially transferred to the Fleet Marine Corps Reserve on 30 April 2010.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Pfc. Benji Stander
Benji he joined the Army on his 22rd Birthday 2011 as a Medic
82nd Airborne selected him in AIT training in Texas to become an Airborne Medic
Once in Fort Bragg he was selected to become a Line Medic with the SAPPERS
He was deployed to Afghanistan Ghazni province in March 2012
He was recommended for:
Valor- for running 800m under indirect fire to save a fellow soldier and drag the other
medic off the field who cracked under the pressure
He saved 6 soldiers from a truck which was blown up by an IED
ran with them through an uncleared route, treated and evacuated them
He received a CMB for saving a Seargents life on his very first mission
He was recommended for a AAM(Army Achievement Medal)because of clearing a route
under fire for 5 consecutive days.
We immigrated to US in 2008 to secure a better and safer future for him after he
graduated from High School in South Africa.
After receiving his Greencard, he joined thr Red Cross as an First Aid Instructor,
and then became a Life Guard with the City of Walnut Creek.
He loved the US so much that he decided to join the Army as appreciation of the better life.
He is going to try out Special Operations Aviation Regiment in the future,
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy LS2 David Reals
David Reals moved to Oakley in 2nd grade and graduated in 2007 from Freedom High School. He joined the Navy and left 5 months after graduation. He is an LS2 and has been in the Navy almost 5 years. When he comes home the 20th we will be leaving the 23rd for his shore duty, he has served 4 years on the USS Enterprise
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Pvt. Nicholas Schiavone
-- He is eighteen years old born Feb eight 1994 graduated from freedom high school in 2012. He has a mother and father robin and rick Schiavone. I am his only sibling. He is an uncle to his nephew Ryan Mendoza. He loves working out water polo and the marines. He has always wanted to be in the marines since he was twelve. He loves his truck. That's his baby. Lol he is an amazing loving smart talented young man. He has tons of friends and was liked by every single person that meets him. He has a girlfriend named Taylor Harrington. Who adores him. My brother was my baby ever since he was born. I called him rosie when he was little and pushed him around in my baby doll stroller. We were so close growing up we pickered and had a great brother sister relationship love hate lol. Fight then love fight then love lol. He did wrestling growing up and baseball basketball and soccer. He is very athletic. He is a very dedicated person and very motivated. He never gives up and always fights for things he wants. He used to do a lot of skateboarding. He has a brother in law named Eric. And his only grandparents Arlene and Henry Robinson.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Linsey Scherdtfeger
Linsey Schwerdtfeger b: 07/28/1986
Son of father, Jeff Schwerdtfeger, Santa Clara Fire Captain and mother Karen, CPA in Antioch
Grew up in Patterson, Discovery Bay
Graduated High School in Santa Cruz in 2004
Joined the Marine Corps in January 23, 2010 and spent the year prior working with new recruits at the
Brentwood Marine Corps Recruiting Office.
Left for basic training in MCRD in San Diego in January of 2010.
Graduated basic training and was transferred to North Carolina for Diesel Mechanic School.
Later in 2010 he successfully completed Diesel Mechanic School where he excelled in rank to E-2.
After completion of schooling he was transferred to Okinawa where he has been stationed since.
During his stay in Okinawa, he was awarded soldier of the month (3 months in a row) and, due to his
excellent performance, he and 1 other soldier were selected to be apart of a training exercise in with
Australia's military and was awarded ribbons. He was stationed with them for about 2 months.
Upon returning to Okinawa, he was again selected for a special detail involving special training with
South Korea's military were he was awarded a Korean deployment medal.
Since his return to Okinawa he has been advanced twice and now carries the rank of E-4 (Corporal ). In
addition to his regular responsibilities as a diesel mechanic, he has also taken on learning the Martial
Arts and has been graduated to the brown belt level. Due to his exceptional abilities, he was asked to
continue his training to become an instructor.
September 8, 2012, Linsey will be transferred back to California at Camp Pendelton, taking a 1 month
well desired leave with his mother and friends in Discovery Bay.
After his leave, Linsey will have additional training and is scheduled to deploy to Afghanistan as early
as January 2013.
Linsey has made great strides in life with his choice to become a Marine. His other interests include,
cooking, bicycling, surfing, skate boarding, snow boarding to just mention a few. He is interest to
further his education focusing on firefighting.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. Shelli Zachery
SHELLI LYNNE ZACHERY ATTENDED AND GRADUATED CLAYTON VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL.
TRAINER AT CVS SPORTS MED, LIFE GUARD
CONCORD RESIDENT SINCE SHE WAS BORN.
ATTENDED DVC FOR A YEAR AND DECIDED TO JOIN THE MARINES
BOOTCAMP AT PARRIS ISLAND AND SCHOOL AT CAMP LAJUNE
SHELLI IS STATIONED AT CAMP PENDLETON WHERE SHE WAS DEPLOYED TO AFGHANISTAN, WHERE SHE WAS PROMOTED TO LANCE CORPORAL, RECEIVE CERTIFICATE IN MARTIAL ARTS. SHELLI VOLUNTEER TO STAY LONGER THAN HER ORIGINAL ORDERS, HER PLATOON ASKED FOR VOLUNTEERS AND MY DAUGHTER RAISED HER HAND AND ACCEPTED. I WAS DEVASTATED BUT PROUD. SHE WORKS IN SUPPLY AND IS WISHES TO PURSUE DRILL INSTRUCTOR SCHOOL . WHEN SHE TERMINATES HER TOUR IN THE MARINES SHE WANTS TO BECOME A POLICE OFFICER LIKE HER AUNT NORMA WHO WORKS FOR THE BURLINGAME POLICE DEPT.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF Capt. David Yuers
Bachelor of Arts, Political Science, 1999, San Francisco State University, San Francisco, California
Associate of Arts, Liberal Arts, 1994, Victor Valley College, Victorville, California
Associate of Science, Aircraft Armament Systems, 1991, Community College of the Air Force, Maxwell AFB, Alabama
US MILITARY SERVICE
US AIR FORCE, 08/1982-08/1992, Rank: E-5, Staff Sergeant
CALIF AIR NATIONAL GUARD, 09/1994-03/2004, Rank: E-6 Technical Sergeant
US AIR FORCE RESERVE, 04/2004-Present, Rank: O-3E, Captain
At the present time he is part of the 547th Intelligence Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada
• Decorated Iraq veteran
• Deployed to Turkey, Kuwait, Iraq, South Korea and Djibouti.
HONORS, AWARDS, RECOGNITIONS
• Company Grade Officer of the Quarter, 2010, RAF Molesworth, UK.
• Air Force Commendation Medal
• Army Commendation Medal
• Air Force Achievement Medal
• Joint Achievement Medal
• Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
• Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
• Air Force Outstanding Unit Award (with Valor)
- 2012 Purple Heart Tour and Escort from the Warrior Watch Riders
Sgt. 1st Class Robert C. Shoup is assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 75th Ranger Regiment at Fort Benning, Ga., as a Capabilities Development NCO.
After completion of One Station Unit Training, the Basic Airborne Course and the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program all at Fort Benning, Ga., Shoup was assigned to Company B, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, Ga. He has served as a Machine Gunner, Machine Gunner Team Leader, Team Leader, Sniper, Sniper Squad Leader, and Squad Leader.
Shoup has conducted 12 combat rotations(totaling 51 months deployed) in support of the War on Terror. He has served in both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. His military education includes the Basic Airborne Course, the Ranger Assessment and Selection Course, U.S. Army Ranger Course, Combat Life Savers Course, Combatives Level 1, Jumpmaster Course, Warrior Leader Course, Sniper School, Advanced Leader Course, and Senior Leader Course.
GySgt Shawn Patrick
During his time in the Marine Corps Shawn has served in the infantry, reconnaissance community, and Marine Special Operations Command. He has completed numerous deployments, including one to Iraq and four to Afghanistan.
SSgt Erik Heffington
After boot camp he attended the Recon Indoctrination Platoon and was assigned to 2D Force Reconnaissance Company in Camp Lejeune North Carolina.
While at 2D Force Recon SSgt Heffington attended the Basic Reconnaissance Course (BRC), US Army Airborne School, Marine Corps Combatant Dive School, US Army Ranger School, Military Free Fall School and deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). In October 2006 SSgt Heffington was assigned to 2D Marine Special Operations Battalion (2D MSOB) in Camp Lejeune North Carolina where he deployed 3 times in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan).
SSgt Heffington has served over 26 months in a combat zone. His decorations include Navy and Marine Corps gold Parachutist wings, Marine Corps Combat Dive Bubble, Combat Action ribbon with gold Star, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medal and two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation medals with Combat V device for Valor. SSgt Heffington is currently serving in 2D Marine Special Operations Battalion in Camp Lejeune North Carolina; he serves as the operations chief for the Battalion training cell.
GySgt Justin Potter
During his time in the Marine Corps Justin has served in the Reconnaissance community and Marine Special Operations Command. He has completed multiple deployments, including one to Iraq and three to Afghanistan.
SFC Jonathan Kipp
He was initially assigned to Charlie Company, 1st Ranger Battalion in Savannah, GA. During his time in Charlie Company, he served as an Anti-tank Gunner, 240B Machine Gunner, Squad Automatic Rifleman, Team Leader, Squad Leader, and HQ Platoon Sergeant, deploying 9 times – five times in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and four times in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF).
SFC Kipp’s decorations include Senior parachutist Wings, Expert Infantryman’s Badge, Combat Infantryman’s Badge and the Ranger Tab. SFC Kipp has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal, Bronze Star, and the Joint Commendation Medal.
SFC Kipp is currently serving as cadre of the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program (RASP 2), Regimental Special Troops Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment in Ft. Benning, GA.
NYC Firefighter (retired) Warren Forsyth
Warren Forsyth, 52, is a retired New York City Fire Fighter. Born and raised in Staten Island New York, Warren joined the FDNY at 21. He worked at Rescue Company 1, located in Midtown Manhattan. Warren worked countless hours at the '93 and ’01 World Trade Center attacks as well as many Manhattan fires in his 20+ years of fire fighting. In his retired life, Warren enjoys fishing in the Florida Keys, hunting in the mountains and motorcycling around America.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. David Kliem
David is the older son of Patty Floyd, Past President of Contra Costa Blue Star Moms, CA Chapter 20. He has just completed 4 years of active duty in the Army, including a tour in Afghanistan, and is now a veteran. David graduated from Ygnacio Valley High School in 2002 and then attended DVC for 2 years before transferring to Simpson University in Redding, California where he received his Bachelors of Arts Degree in Youth Ministry with a Minor in Bible and Theology.
David joined the Army in 2008 and was stationed at Fort Gordon, Georgia for his AIT training in computers, networking, radio and other communications systems. David was then stationed at Fort Bliss, Texas. While in the Army, he established the networking foundations of a large division down to its individual sections. He imaged and serviced the division’s computers and tracked and ran cat-5 cable. He was the company IT representative, fielding all technical issues for computers and network components in the company, including sensitive equipment. He created a section filing system for 15 soldiers, operated advanced radio and networking equipment used by the division for essential mission training in warfare. David held a Military Secret Security Clearance and has also guided and supervised all nightly air traffic on base while in Afghanistan.
David and his wife are now living in Concord and he is looking for an IT network administration job. Please let us know if anyone has any connections for employment in the IT field!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Kevin Calhoun
Kevin Calhoun grew up in Pleasanton, CA where he lived until joining the Army in 2010. He attended Walnut Grove, Harvest Park, and Amador Valley High Schools (Class of 2005). In his childhood years Kevin enjoyed playing the piano, being a part of the Pleasanton Heat track team, and playing football for several seasons on Pleasanton league teams. He has also been a lifelong fan of the Oakland A’s, the Golden State Warriors, and the Raiders.
In high school Kevin played football on Amador Valley’s football team and worked for several years at Noah’s Bagels. After graduation, Kevin attended Los Positas College and worked as a waiter at Red Robin, On the Border, and The Hopyard restaurants. He enjoyed a special camaraderie with the staff at the Hopyard and loved working there.
Kevin joined the Army in August of 2010 and completed his basic training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. He graduated at the top of his class and won several awards, including medals for loyalty and physical training. Kevin remained at Fort Sill for his AIT artillery training and was transferred to Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas in December of 2012. At Fort Bliss Kevin continued training in operating the Howitzer and was deployed to Afghanistan in September of 2011. For the past ten months Kevin has served at various forward operating bases in Eastern Afghanistan and successfully completed patrol and security missions as part of the F-1 field artillery group. Recently Kevin was promoted to Specialist and will continue artillery training upon his return to Fort Bliss in September.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Reserves, Sgt. Joe Alatorre
Joe joined the Texas National Guard,111th ASMB in San Antonio in Aug 22,1997- Oct 13, 2007
Texas National Guard Awards
AAM- Army Achievement Medal
ARCAM- Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal x2
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terroism Expeditionary Medal
Armed Forces Reserve medal with M/device
Army service Ribbon
Texas adjutant Generals Indivual award
Texas Faithful service award
Texas State guard Cert of commendation
*Transfered over to California National Guard, 297th ASMC in Oct 15, 2007 till Aug 10, 2009
*Transfered over to Army Reserve, 352nd CSH in Aug 11, 2009
*Deployed with 391st Medical Logistics Company Sept 28,2011till July 12,2012
Medical Training Cert of achievement
AAM Army Achievement Medal
ARCOM Army Commendation Medal
Most memorable moment in the all his service was in the summer 2005 during Operation Lone Star supported a mission with Texas National Guard provided free medical and dental for anyone in the region. Joe was repairing dental equipment for that mission and watched them take care of a tooth for a small child with the dental unit he just repaired.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Nolan Kalkwarf , Spc. Andrew Welles, Pfc. Eric Tarango
US ARMY Spc. Nolan Kalkwarf
Spc Nolan Kalkwarf was born and raised in northern Washington State with his sisters and brother.
Upon graduating from high school Nolan joined the ARMY to serve his country.
Spc Kalkwarf is one of the Roughnecks in the Blackscarves. He is a 240 gunner who is also trained in mortars.
During his tour of duty in Afghanistan Nolan was bitten by the “iron bug”… he is a body builder who is determined to become a champion body builder upon completion of his service.
Because of his outstanding discipline and personal ethics, Spc. Kalkwarf has received many medals and accommodations for his service.
Someday when Nolan becomes a civilian again he will surely be a success on whatever path he chooses, he is a born leader and an extremely disciplined individual who sets and achieves high goals.
US ARMY Pfc. Eric Tarango
Eric grew up in a small town in the bay area; he is one of our own homegrown heroes.
Shortly after graduating Serria Nevada High School, Eric joined the Army in February 2010. He wanted to serve his country and set a good example for his brothers and sisters. Eric knew the Army would be a great place to “push the limits” of his mental, physical and spiritual growth.
Upon successful completion of his training in Fort Benning Georgia to become a machine gunner, Eric was stationed in Grafenwohr Germany.
In July of 2011 Eric was deployed with the TF 1-2 172nd “Blackscarfs” as a machine gunner.
During countless air and land assault missions Eric fought with honor and refused to leave his company and continued fighting even after his leg was injured.
Eric received many medals and ribbons including the CIB and the ARCOM.
Even during his short leave Eric continued to serve his country by speaking to a class of middle school students back home about Army life. His family and community are very proud of him.
Upon completion of this tour of duty, Eric will be heading off to Army ranger training and then onto Airborne training. Eric has re- enlisted.
Someday when he is finished with his service to his country, Eric hopes to fulfill his lifelong dream of opening a small mechanics shop in the Bay area and raising his family.
US ARMY Spc. Andrew (Andy) Welles
SPC Andy Welles grew up in the small town of Waymart Pennsylvania, surrounded by three generations of his family and close friends he has known since grade school.
Andy has always been an adventure seeker, he loves to cliff jump, hunt, fish, skydive and travel.
After graduating from Western Wayne High School, Andy chose to serve his country by joining the US ARMY.
Upon graduation from Fort Benning Georgia in May of 2010 where he earned his first medal for sharp shooting, Andy was then stationed in Grafenwohr Germany. In July of 2011 Andy was deployed to Afghanistan with his unit the Task Force 1-2 Infantry, 172nd known as the “Blackscarves”.
SPC Welles completed countless air assault and ground missions with honor as the TF 1-2 A company’s sharpshooter. During his ten-month tour of duty covering several provinces throughout Afghanistan, Andy earned many ribbons and medals including The Army Achievement Medal, CIB and the ARCOM.
Andy was often chosen to lead the way up the highest mountainsides because of his outstanding fitness level; as a matter of fact Andy competed and earned first place honors and an accommodation in the brigade’s fitness and readiness challenge.
After completion of his service Andy plans on attending Helicopter training school to become a civilian pilot, raise a family and continue supporting his fellow veterans.
- Welcome Home U S Army Spc. Justin Donk
SPC Justin Donk graduated from Livermore High School in 2009 and enlisted in the Army in the Fall of 2009. He is a Paratrooper with the 3rd Battalion, 509th Infantry, 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry at Ft. Richardson, Alaska. This is Justin's first deployment with Operation Enduring Freedom.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. Matthew J Walsh
Matthew was raised in Martinez and graduated from Alhambra High School in 2009 where he was the co-caption of his football team, member of the varsity basketball team and played baseball. He attended DVC for a year but had known for years he wanted to join the military to make a difference in the world. When he told me he wanted to join the Marines, I suggested visiting all branches of the Military and then making his choice on which branch to join. But there was no choice for him, he wanted to be a Marine.
On June 2nd, Matthew returned home from Kabul, Afghanistan and was reunited with his mother, brother and sister for the Welcome Home celebration in Twentynine Palms.
LCpl Matthew J. Walsh
He joined the Marine Corps on Feb. 14, 2011, where he started boot camp at Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD), San Diego. Three months later upon graduation he received a meritorious promotion to Private First Class (PFC) and also received an award for the Platoon High PFT - Physical Excellence Award denoting that he was the most physically fit Marine in his company. On May 25 PFC Walsh started his training with the School of Infantry West at Camp Pendelton CA. Two months later PFC Walsh graduated and received the Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) of an Anti-Tank Guided Missileman (0352), commonly refereed to as a TOW gunner. He received two awards upon his graduation which was the Physical Excellence Award and was again meritoriously promoted to Lance Corporal and graduated at the top of his section at the School of Infantry.
He received orders to report to 1st Tank Battalion, stationed at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center (MCAGCC) in Twentynine Palms CA. After 4 months of training in Twentynine Palms and in LA with the LA Swat Team, LCpl Walsh was assigned to an NTM-A training and advising team set to deploy to northern Afghanistan. The team deployed in November 2011 and served 7 months in Kabul, Afghanistan.
LCpl Walsh was awarded the Certificate of Commendation for his actions throughout the deployment.
- 2012 4th. of July Parade, Danville
Another beautiful 4th. of July parade in downtwn Danville, we entered our Operation Welcome Home, "Flag Float' with a lot of Veteran's from the past, Special thanks to Peter Richards and "GMAN" Micheal Tracy for their "M-35 Troop Carrier, complete with machine guns on the top, the crowd stood up, and welcomed our veterans with applause, it was beautiful!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. RJ Rahey
U.S. Marine LCpl RJ Rahey is returning home from his deployment at Guantanamo.
Lcpl RJ Rahey has wanted to be a United States Marine since he stood on the parade deck at MCRD San Diego in 2001 and watched the Moto Run the day before a graduation. He was ten years old and was introduced to “the Marine way” by his stepfather, Jim Gooch, who was a DI at MCRD many years prior. Little did his proud parents, Jim and Pidge, know that 10 years later they would be watching him graduate on that same parade deck. Inspired to action following the events of 9-11, RJ became a Sea Cadet in junior high school and spent his first 3 years in his Florida high school in a Navy JROTC, rising to the rank of Command Master Chief. For his senior year in high school the family relocated to El Paso, Texas where he graduated in 2010 from Coronado High School.
RJ entered recruit training at MCRD San Diego in March of 2011 and attended the School of Infantry at Camp Pendleton, and Security Force training in Chesapeake, VA. Upon graduation from Security Force training, he became a proud infantry Marine serving in the Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team (FAST) with Bravo Company 5th Platoon based at NWS Yorktown in Virginia. RJ’s platoon has been at Guantanamo Bay Naval base for the past several months to support operations there during recent high profile legal proceedings. While there, he qualified as a rifle expert.
Home for a week, RJ will return to NWS Yorktown following the July 4th holiday in anticipation of a deployment to Japan in the Fall.
- Danville's Fallen Soldier Memorial, USMC Lcpl. Joshua "Chachi" Corral
June 17, 2012. Danville, CA. Semper Fi Foundation has partnered with the Town of Danville to celebrate the recent passing of Marine LCpl Joshua “Chachi” Corral. His death in Afghanistan has been a rally call to our community to unite and give thanks to the young men and woman who continue to put themselves in harm’s way to protect and serve this great nation. A bronze Fallen Hero Memorial statue will be permanently placed outside the newly renovated Danville Veteran’s Memorial Building to pay tribute to Chachi and other military community service members who have given their lives for our country. A memorial dedication will be held on Saturday, June 23 at 10:00 am at the Danville Veteran’s Memorial Building and followed by a celebration at The Danville Town Green.
Len Hack, Executive Director and father of one of Chachi’s best friends, wants the community to know that Chachi was a true warrior and he lived his life with unconditional commitment, passion, and the desire to protect and serve others. “Chachi made the ultimate sacrifice, and we as a community, will never forget him”. The memorial and celebration is the first of many events to raise funds to honor and support all United States Marines, fallen heroes, and their families. Hack added, “The purpose of the foundation is to help Marine families in several areas: Health & Wellness, Education, Online Family Resources, and keeping the public aware of the tremendous sacrifice our military members make to protect our freedom and liberty.”
Two days prior to his death, Chachi was able to make a phone call to his parents. Although exhausted and in the face of danger, his main concern was not for himself, but rather for his fellow Marines. His parents, Arnie and Denise Corral want to make sure to follow through with Chachi’s wishes and take the necessary steps to support the needs of his fellow Marines.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Jordan Borer
Jordan Borer is an amazing man, father, husband & phenomenal patriot. He served our country for 4 years in the United States Marine Corps and deployed twice with Operation Iraqi Freedom. Each deployment was for 6 months where he was completing each mission to the fullest extent driving anyone and anything needed to continue the operations at hand. He lost a few of his friends during his first deployment and was even in one fire fight right before coming home. As his very lucky wife (and girlfriend during the first deployment) I understand what he went through to stay in contact with me. Staying up all hours of the night and waiting in horrendously long lines to call, or email me. Since coming home he has continued to take pride in the country he served and in the men and woman who are still serving. I'm thankful every day that he came home safe from his deployments and amazed at the wonderful home and family we have together. He is my best friend, my partner in life and I could not imagine living without him.
Jordan deployed February 2006 (two weeks after we met) – September 2006. Communication was a huge challenge during this deployment and he would go to any lengths necessary to call or email me as often as possible.
Jordan deployed March 2008 (The day before my birthday, and was gone for our first year anniversary). He returned in October and had to live with a family friend because I had already moved in with my parents and had taken a job in the bay area, where he was to meet me when he got out in January of 2009.
When he returned home from the second deployment and finished his service he memorialized his fallen friends with a back tattoo of a bald eagle, the flag and their names with the dates he lost them. His mother in law (my mother) was diagnosed with cancer in January of 2009 and he was home with her for six months to keep her spirits high and help the family in our time of need. He provides an amazing life for his family, and always puts us first. I do not know how I got so lucky to be with such an amazing man, and hero; all I know is my life would be incomplete without him. Each day is a blessing and as we continue the journey of life together I know it will only get even fuller as our beautiful family continues to grow. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for honoring my amazing husband and the service he gave to the United States of America. I could not be any more proud to be the woman standing by his side.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Reserves, Pvt. Matthew Hunteman
Matthew Hunteman graduated in 2011 from Alhambra High School. He had always spoken about joining the army althrough his High school years. He attended basic training at Fort Leonard wood Missouri.From there he went to Fort Lee in Virginia. In Virginia he studied Transportation. His plan is to attend college and study engineering. Matthew is in the US Army Reserves, and is a Pvt. He wanted to join the Army to follow in his fathers footsteps and proudly service his country.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Justin Boumann
Born in Orange county
Spent first 9 years in Pleasanton
Went to school in Brentwood and finished in Stockton
Always had a love for the outdoors and weapons!
Is an avid guitarist and listens to classic rock!
Said after finishing basic training in Georgia that he wished he hadn't waited so long after hs to join the Army!!
Spent a year in Iraq and will be joining the 101st airborne in Kentucky
- Welcome Home Marines!
Our first Marine is LCpl Joe Pauselius who returned stateside from Afghanistan on April 19. Joe is with the 3/7 (aka “The Cutting Edge”) Battalion that is based in 29 Palms, California.
Joe is a 2009 Foothill graduate and attended Las Positas College before joining the Marines in June 2010 with infantry as his MOS. He graduated boot camp with a meritorious promotion to PFC, squad leader of his unit as well as earning his expert Rifleman pin. Upon his completion of SOI training, he was selected to be a 0331 Gunner. After SOI he was then stationed in 29 Palms where he quickly learned that his new backyard was the training base for all who had to complete their Viper Training which would be everyday for Joe until he deployed to the Helmand Province on September 23, 2011. Because of his outstanding performance during deployment, he was chosen to be part of a Leadership Course at Pendleton which begins this August. To combat the high cost of gas commuting home from Pendelton, Joe’s answer has been to purchase a new Harley!
Twins PFC Justin Waller and LCpl Cody Waller did most things together – played football at Amador, enlisted in the delayed entry program for the Marine Corp, then both graduated Amador in 2010. They both left two weeks later for boot camp and both graduated in September 2010. Consistent with doing everything together, they both chose their MOS as Machine Gunner and both were assigned to 29 Palms.
But the ‘twin- thing’ ended when Justin got assigned to the 3/7 and Cody to the 3/4.
Cody was the first to deploy in April 2011 and was seriously injured on May 27, 2011. Cody was airlifted to Germany and then Bethesada, He continued his rehabilitation at the Veterans Hospital in Palo Alto until July 1, 2011. Cody is now stationed at Camp Pendleton in the Wounded Warrior Battlalion West.
PFC Justin Waller deployed to Afghanistan in September 2011 and arrived stateside in April 2012. Justin will be enjoying his 30 day leave until the end of June. Cpl Andrew Peterson USMC will be attending today's homecoming. He did two tours, completed his service in November. Never had a homecoming.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Sgt. Justin Fong
Justin is a long time resident of Antioch, CA and graduated from Deer Valley High School in June 2007. In High School Justin was very active in sports and played on the Freshman Basketball, JV Football and Varsity Volleyball teams.
He comes from a family of strong military men. His great grandfather was awarded the Bronze Star for his act of heroism during World War II and his grandfather was a member of the National Guard. Justin’s father and stepfather are both former Marines.
Justin’s passion to join the Marines was sparked by the events of 9/11. He realized on that day that he wanted to pursue an opportunity to defend our Country and fight for our freedom.
In September 2008, Justin started boot camp at MCRD, San Diego. He graduated in November 2008 and due to his outstanding accomplishments in boot camp, was promoted to squad leader and received a meritorious promotion to PFC. Justin also achieved expert marksmanship in his shooting abilities. This is the highest level that can be earned.
Following graduation, Justin attended his MOS training at Camp Pendleton. He chose to specialize in amphibious assault and become a “tracker”. During Justin's MOS training he received a meritorious promotion to LCpl. His promotion was earned due to his outstanding academic and physical accomplishments. Justin was the top graduate of his class and earned 100% on every practical and written test. An accomplishment no one had achieved in over 6 years. After graduation he was stationed at Camp Pendleton and became part of the 4th Platoon, Charlie Company, 3rd Assault Amphibian Battalion, 1st Marine Division. Otherwise known as YAT YAS (you aint track, you aint sh**) Company C.
Within the next few months Justin continued to demonstrate strong leadership skills and earned a promotion to Cpl. and became the crew chief of his track. Soon after his promotion to Cpl. Justin and his YAT YAS Company deployed on a MEU (Marine Expeditionary Unit) aboard the USS New Orleans in support of operation Partnership of the Americas/Southern Exchange. It was a combined amphibious exercise with maritime forces from Argentina, Mexico, Peru, Brazil, Uruguay and Colombia.
During that deployment Justin continued to demonstrate strong leadership skills and again received several accommodations. He also became the "face" of the mission and was featured on the cover of the Leatherneck Magazine (The magazine of the Marines) in October 2010.
Justin continued to train with his Company and in October 2011 deployed for 7 months to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. His company was attached to Fourth Platoon Motor Transport Company Combat Logistics Battalion 1, 1st Marine logistics group. They were to serve as the Security Unit for CLB -1. Justin and his Unit completed over 50 missions while deployed. He began his assignment as an Assistant Security Unit Leader and after several months was promoted to Security Unit Leader. Justin received an accommodation for his exceptional professionalism, initiative and loyal dedication to duty. He led his Unit through 50 logistic patrols providing and directing security for 618 vehicles, 1,570 personnel for 806 hours while traveling 4,132 miles in direct support of Regimental Combat Team 5. Through his own initiative he instructed 13 gunners on and continually reinforced proper weapons handling and maintenance procedures showing great flexibility.
While in Afghanistan, Justin reenlisted in his commitment to continue to serve our Country and because of his continued dedication and hard work earned the rank of Sergeant. He also earned the rank of brown belt in the Marines Corps martial art program known as MCMAP.
Justin will soon take on new adventures with his career and we can only begin to imagine the outstanding accomplishments he has yet to complete. We are very honored to have him home and very proud of the strong man he has become. Thank you Justin for defending our freedom and maintaining the passion to protect our Country. Semper Fi
- Phillips 66 hosts the 4th Annual, "2012 Walk of Honor"
- UC Davis 2012 Mens and Womens Volleyball Team
- Welcome Home celebration for USMC Lcpl. Jordon Dorrance
On March 15, 2012, LCPL Jordon T Dorrance returned from his first tour in Afghanistan as a member of the 2/4, The Magnificent Bastards.
Jordon is a 2010 graduate of San Ramon Valley High school where he excelled as a member of the varsity wrestling team. Jordon is one of the seven 2010 SRVHS graduates that went into the Marines right out of high school, Chachi Corral, Erik Smith, Brock Marcotte, Justin Romans, Kyle Parrish, Sean Mahoney and Ian Jump. Chachi Corral and Jordon went through SOI together, Jordon always said that with Chachi at his side it brought a bit of home while training at Camp Pendleton.
Jordon was born and raised in Danville and attended John Baldwin and Charlotte Wood prior to entering San Ramon Valley High School. Prior to joining the Marine Corp., Jordon’s hobbies included studying Jiu Jitsu, boxing and Muay Ti. He likes to stay active so being a Marine was an easy transition.
Jordon has dreamed of being a Marine since his days at John Baldwin Elementary and after being witness to the tragedy of 9/11, the passion grew as he felt he could really make a difference by being a Marine.
He excelled at boot camp where he earned a meritorious promotion to private first class, one of five in his company to achieve such an honor. Jordon earned high marks in all areas of training and attained his expert rifleman qualification. Jordon currently is based at Camp Pendleton where he also completed his SOI training.
While serving his country in Afghanistan, Jordon was promoted to Lance Corporal and received the Combat Action Ribbon and was assigned as his unit’s sweeper. The sweepers responsibility is to lead his patrol out in front of his fellow Marines sweeping for IED’s. Jordon led his unit as sweeper on every single patrol, a very rare and dangerous feat.
Jordon and his 2/4 battalion took part on several key and highly successful operations in Afghanistan such as, Operation Opening Gambit, Operation Alekhines Gun I & II, and Operation Double Check.
Jordon is very proud to be a U.S. Marine and is proud to call Danville his home town.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. Ryan Leathley
Ryan Leathley went to California high School and graduated in 2010. He has been active in sports his entire life. Played Football and Baseball at Calif. High School. After his Freshman year he chose to play only Football but continued to play baseball for San Ramon Little League.
Ryan wanted to join the Marine Corps since 8th grade. He joined up after High School and left for Boot Camp on Aug 23rd. He graduated from Boot Camp on Nov. 19th. He rec'd an
Expert Medal and the Ribbon for joining during time of war.
Ryan went onto SOI and then trained as a Machine Gunner. He joined the unit 2/4 Magnificent Bastards assigned to Weapons Co. in Feb 2011.
Ryan was deployed to Afghanistan Sept of 2011 and became a LCpl. in Oct. 2011.
He earned 6 medals while deployed. Ryan returned home to Camp Pendleton on March 28th 2012.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Erik Smith
Erik graduated from San Ramon Valley High School 2010, He played water polo and lacrosse in High school.
Erik joined the Marines his senior year and left for boot camp in San Diego august 2010, completed school of infantry at Camp Pendleton
Erik has been stationed in Kaneohe Hawaii since march 2011, He has been deployed once to Afghanistan
and returned to Hawaii March 28 2012
He will start training in july for squad leader
His rank is lance corporal
Thank you so much for doing this
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC 1st Sgt. Michael Hamby
Michael Hamby, is a First Sgt in the Marine Corps stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina and he is retiring this month and coming to work with me here in California.
Just a little back ground. Mike has been in every major conflict since the Gulf war. He has had two tours of Iraq, one tour of Afganistan, he has earned the Bronze Star with Combat Valor, and has been awarded
a Purple Heart for surviving, with injuries, an IED incident in Iraq.
He has spent 22 years in the Marine Corps and due to his head injuries, for which he is being medicated, it was considered timely that he be retired.
He has been stationed in Fort Sill, Ok, in Tennessee, in Quantico, Va, was in Guantanimo Bay, twice at Camp Lejeune, and a variety of overseas assignments.
His son, Michael Jr., my grandson, is presently in the marine corps and has been to Afganistan and is scheduled to go back this year.
>22 years ago, I went to San Diego and watched my son graduate Marine Corps boot camp, 2 years ago, I went to Parris Island and watched my grandson graduate marine corps boot camp.
- Welcome Home USN LCDR Rebekah Johnson
When she was two years old, Rebekah Johnson moved to Danville with her parents and two older sisters, Elisabeth and Sara. She attended Ygnacio Valley Christian School in Concord and Contra Costa Christian High School in Walnut Creek, graduating as valedictorian. She graduated from Biola University in La Mirada with a B.S. in Communications (Public Relations emphasis). She then worked for some 14 years as a PR specialist and manager in the hi-tech field, including stints with Porter-Novelli, Sun Microsystems, and Brocade Communications.
In 1998, Rebekah applied for a commission as a Navy Reserve Officer, following in the Navy tradition of her grandfather, father, and two uncles, as well as two cousins who still serve. She was selected as a Navy Reserve Public Affairs Officer (PAO) in 1999, and was sworn in by Rear Admiral Russell Gorman in December of that year during an exciting ceremony on the flight deck of the USS Hornet in Alameda. Rebekah’s mother stated at that ceremony that “I was a Navy daughter, then a Navy sister, then a Navy wife, and now I am a Navy mother.” In the twelve years that followed, Rebekah was assigned to several Navy Reserve units in California and Washington, including a two-year tour as Commanding Officer of a Public Affairs unit in Everett, Washington.
Rebekah’s active duty training periods included initial Officer training at Pensacola, Florida, and PAO assignments in Thailand, Sicily, Vietnam, aboard USS Abraham Lincoln, and with the Chief of Naval Information (CHINFO) in Washington, D.C. She also had two active duty assignments to the Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet, in support of major international fleet exercises in the Central Pacific. During her one-month assignment in Vietnam, Rebekah assisted the U.S. Consulate by providing public affairs coverage and media interface for the hospital ship USNS Mercy, which visited numerous ports in Vietnam to provide medical care and other support for the Vietnamese people.
During her initial officer training in Pensacola, Rebekah earned a Pistol Marksmanship Medal. During her numerous other assignments that followed, she was awarded the following additional medals:
Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal
Joint Service Achievement Medal
Navy/Marine Corps Achievement Medal (with two stars for second and third awards)
National Defense Service Medal
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Navy/Marine Corps Overseas Service Medal
Armed Forces Reserve Medal
In early August 2011, Rebekah began an eight-month deployment (including pre-training and debriefing time) to Afghanistan. During this period, she served as Deputy PAO for Combined Joint Interagency Task Force (CJIATF) 435, an international, inter-service task force that also included other US agencies. Stationed at Camp Phoenix in Kabul and commanded by a 3-star General, this command’s responsibilities include managing the Parwan Detention Facility (a modern Guantanamo-type facility north of Kabul) and other facilities that support it. CJIATF 435 also assists the Commander in executing strategic and operational level missions in Combined Joint Operations Area – Afghanistan.
Rebekah complained very little to her family about activities during her pre-deployment training at Fort Jackson in South Carolina. There she got to march around in hot, sticky, August weather, wearing body armor (33 pounds for the vest alone) and carrying her rifle, pistol, and full pack. Her pistol and rifle were with her at all times, even during meals. An E-mail from Fort Jackson said, “I just finished my first week of combat skills training at Fort Jackson, in hot and humid South Carolina. I honestly cannot remember a time in recent memory when I have been this hot and exhausted, every day. I don’t think there is a muscle in my body that doesn't hurt.” For diversions she got to do things like strap herself into a HUMVEE (and later, the larger MRAP), then crawl out (with all her gear) after it was turned upside down.
During long hot days at the Fort Jackson firing range, Rebekah earned the Rifle Marksman Medal, and upgraded her Pistol Marksman Medal to Sharpshooter. Other training followed, including convoying procedures and exercises. After her arrival in Kabul, Rebekah was eager to get her five turns as vehicle driver so she could be qualified as Convoy Commander for movements that she might have to make between Camp Phoenix, the Parwan detention facility, or other locations. Some of her travel there was also by helicopter. Rebekah’s boss in Kabul (the Command PAO, a Navy Captain) and the Generals placed heavy reliance on her to provide quality and effective interface with news media, Afghani counterparts, and affiliated commands, and to keep them informed regarding daily news coverage.
There were anxious days during Rebekah’s deployment, such as the September 2011 attack on the U.S. Embassy and NATO Headquarters in Kabul. The most distressing time for her family was in late October, when a suicide truck bomb destroyed a U.S. armored bus in Kabul, killing all on board. She didn’t make her usual Sunday morning call, and there was no word by e-mail. Four U.S. servicemen from her base, one Canadian soldier, and several contract personnel were killed, along with Camp Phoenix’s morale dog, Lucy. The Commander had shut down all outside communications (phone and internet) until next-of-kin could be notified, but Rebekah got word to her anxious family a couple of days later that she was safe. She said the memorial service for those who were killed was extremely difficult. Several other killings of U.S. servicemen in early 2012 prompted her family to pray earnestly for her safety, as Camp Phoenix went on lockdown, with all movements on base (even walking to lunch) requiring a “buddy system” escort.
Near the end of her deployment to Afghanistan, the Secretary of Defense awarded Rebekah the Defense Meritorious Service Medal (DMSM) “… for exceptionally meritorious service for the Armed Forces of the United States.” The citation stated, in part:
“… during Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, Lieutenant Commander Rebekah Johnson displayed extraordinary leadership and exemplary professionalism, assisting the Public Affairs Officer with all functions. She served as Acting Public Affairs Officer during a highly charged media environment, providing strategic counsel to the command staff, liasing with senior military and state leadership …. The distinctive accomplishments of Lieutenant Commander Johnson reflect great credit upon herself, Combined Interagency Task Force 435, the United States Navy, and the Department of Defense.”
The DMSM is the third-highest DOD medal and the highest in precedence of all the medals and awards she has received. For her service during her deployment to Afghanistan, she was also awarded the Afghanistan Campaign Medal and a ribbon reflecting receipt by CJIATF 435 of the Joint Meritorious Unit Award.
Rebekah missed the arrival of her sister Sara’s newborn, Rosemary, in mid-December. Getting to know her new niece remained an eager objective for the remainder of Rebekah’s deployment. Above all else, and there is nothing greater, her family is grateful to God for her protection and safe return. They join her family and friends, the Town of Danville, her Nation, and many others to welcome Rebekah home, celebrate her homecoming, and express their gratitude for her valuable service to the United States of America.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Aaron Andrew Hart
Aaron is a Cannon Crew Member in the Army. His rank is Specialist. His full name is Aaron Andrew Hart. Aaron joined the Army in January of 2009. After graduating from Livermore High that same year he attended Basic training and AIT at Ft. Sill Oklahoma. After graduating AIT Aaron was stationed at Ft. Drum New York. Aaron deployed to Afghanistan with the 4/25 FA, 3BCT, 10th Mountain Division on March 20th 2011. Aaron and six of his fellow soldiers were wounded in combat in Kandahar Province on the 6th of August 2011. He returned to his Wife and Daughter at Ft. Drum on the 8th of March 2012. Aaron has received the Purple Heart and Combat Action Badge.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Alana Chapin
Alana Paige Chapin grew up in Rocklin CA where she was active in soccer, swimming and baseball. She was a standout on the Whitney HS Women’s Fast Pitch Softball team. Alana particularly enjoyed working with kids at the City of Rocklin Kids Junction Program where she gained familiarity with the Local Police Outreach programs such as DARE that influenced her decision to pursue a career in Law Enforcement.
Alana pre-enlisted as a Military Police candidate and upon Graduation from Whitney HS in June 2010 departed for Basic Training and the initial phase of MP training at Ft. Leonard Wood MO. Immediately after MP School Graduation in December of 2010 she was assigned to Ft. Polk LA for additional training. Alana deployed to Afghanistan August 2011. She has served on FOBs and COPs in Kandahar Province.
She was promoted to Specialist February 2012.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy Petty Officer HM-3 Mark Little
Petty Officer Third Class Mark Little
Mark attended High school in Livermore before enlisting with the Navy. He went to boot camp March 3rd, 2009 at the Naval Training Center Great Lakes where he earned the Marksmanship Sharpshooter Ribbon. He started his A-School the first week of May 2009 at the Naval Hospital Corpsman School at Great Lakes.
On September 8, 2009 he was assigned to work at the US Naval Hospital in Guam. During his service on Guam he was part of the Joint Region Marianas Funeral Detail, where he participated in burials and honored those who served before. He also earned Blue Jacket of the YEAR for the Command for 2011 which as a result received the Navy Achievement Medal.
In June of 2011 he went to Fort Dix for his pre-deployment training before leaving for Afghanistan August 2011. He has been stationed with the NATO Role 3 Multinational Medical Unit (MMU) at Kandahar Air Field
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. James Prior
Lance Corporal James Michael Prior, United States Marine Corps
Graduated from Liberty High School, Brentwood, CA – Class of 2008
Resident of Discovery Bay from June 2003 – June 2009
Worked at CVS/Long’s Pharmacy in Discovery Bay 2007-2009
Hometown – Livermore, CA
Birth – January 20, 1991 in Amarillo, TX
Stationed at Camp Lejuene, North Carolina
2/2 Warlords Battalion Land Team, H&S Company, S-6 Communications Shop
22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit
Enlisted USMC July 2009
Boot Camp - USMC Camp Pendleton March 2010
MOS - 0612 Field Wireman
April 2011 – February 2012 on the USS Bataan, Bataan Amphibious Ready Group
Deployed to the Mediterranean as part of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit; the most decorated of the Marine Corps’ seven MEUs.
James is among 2,300 Marines and sailors deployed aboard the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group; more than 10 months afloat. This deployment is one of the longest on record for a deployed Marine Corps unit, as Marine Corps units typically deploy for six to seven months. This was the longest U.S. Navy ship deployment in nearly 40 years. Serving in combat cargo and preparing the ship for departure, James had to board the ship two weeks earlier than most service-members and was amongst that last 40 to disembark.
The USS Bataan returned to Norfolk, Va., on Feb. 7. The ship left in March 2011, three months earlier than planned due to hostilities in Libya. The USS Bataan is one of three ships that comprised the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group. USS Mesa Verde and USS Whidbey Island were the other two ships that deployed in support of NATO-led operations in Libya.
While deployed, the Marines and sailors of the 22nd MEU supported operations in U.S. European, African and Central commands' areas of responsibility, including operations in Libya, training in Djibouti and bilateral training with Spanish and Romanian marines.
The 22nd MEU is a Marine Air Ground Task Force comprised of Ground Combat Element, Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment; Aviation Combat Element, Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 263 (Reinforced); Logistics Combat Element, Combat Logistics Battalion 22; and the Command Element.
James celebrated his 21st birthday, Thanksgiving, and Christmas while on deployment.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army 1st Lt. Andrew Ng
2010 Graduate of United States Military Academy, West Point,
Graduate of Ranger, Airborne and Air Assault School
Currently assigned to Ft. Campbell KY as a Pathfinder Platoon Leader with the 159th Combat Aviation Brigade
Returned from Afghanistan 18 February 2012
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Linn
- Welcome Home US Army SSgt. Jon Adams
History- Jon was born in Antioch and grew up in Knightsen.
Jon joined the Army in October 2003. He decided to join the Army after the 9-11 attaches. He felt that he needed to do his part to help serve and protect the country that he held dear to his heart.. He has been very dedicated to his service. He has been on several deployments which include Iraq and Afghanistan. Jon has been a very honorable soldier. He has given the military and his missions the highest devotion and has never backed down from what is asked of him. The military has become his life and he strives for excellence in his job, his soldiers, his missions, and his training. He has devoted the last eight years and 4 months to the Army, willingly served overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan to help fight the War on Terror. He helped build the Army in his Recruiting mission by going out and finding well qualified soldier to help protect this country. He has put the Army first and has always tried to live the army values.
Jon has been married for almost 13 years to Mari (said Mary) Adams. They have three kids Tyler Zac and Aurora.
Basic Training at Fort Benning Georgia
Assigned to the 187 Rakkasan 101st airborne division in Tennessee
Joined Sniper unit for 187th Rakkasans
Deployed to Iraq in 2005-2006 as sniper
Joined Recruiting Unit 2007
Antioch recruiting unit
Joined reserve unit at Moffett Field –change MOS to Psyops (Psychological Operations)
Deployed to Afghanistan
Air Assault course
WLC (Warrior Leadership Course)
Senior Leadership Course
JFK Special Warfare School NCO Academy
Received his Associates of arts in Criminal Justice
Air Assault Badge
Certificate of Achievement for Operation Eagle Pride (2005)
2 Army Commendation Medal
Combat Infantry Badge
3 Army Achievement Medals
Global War on Terrorism service medal
National Defense Service medal
Army good conduct medal
Iraq Campaign medal
Non-commissioned Officer Professional Deployment Ribbon
Army Service Ribbon
Awarded Combat Orders of the Spurs for actions in Iraq
Award Achievement Medal for Service in Recruiting
Gold Recruiting Badge
Army Reserve Component Achievement Award
Combat Action Badge
Non-article 5 NATO Medal
Afghanistan Campaign Medal
- Welcome Home U S Army Sgt. Cassandra Moody
Cassie was part of the 352nd CSH (Combat support hospital)
She is a Surgical Technician. Worked in the operating room along side the surgeons.
I've attached excerpts from her letters so you can have an ideas of what she did and what went on in her unit as well as recognition she has received.
Excerpts from Sgt. Cassandra G. Moody’s Letters from Afghanistan
We call for liberties on the loudspeaker when we have patients come in, for instance, Liberty red means 1
patient, liberty white means 2, blue means 3 and black means 4 or more. Soon we'll transition to Dragon
red, white, blue, and black because that's our mascot. The past couple of days have been tiresome
because yesterday morning we got a liberty black at 5am and this morning we got another liberty black at
4am. Once the medics check out the patients and the Dr's assess them and xrays, they determine if they
need surgery or not and if they don't then we go back to getting ready for the day or we wait until after the
surgery is done. So far we have not had anyone pass away in our hospital, but we have a local
national on life support who got hit with an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) now and he's not looking
Yesterday morning I got awarded a Commanders Coin! One side has our unit crest and the other is a
pic of Afghanistan. Another soldier and I got the Commanders first coins here in country for always being
the first to volunteer for anything. Even for staying afterward and cleaning a room after a meeting or class.
I have been tasked with being the NCOIC (non-commissioned officer in command) of NBC (Nuclear,
biological, chemical) gear. So once a month I have to make sure everyone has their chemical suits and
injections then send a report to the officers in Bagram.
We had our internet turned off because 2 nights ago we got hit with a mortar in the compound not to far
from where we sleep and a Lt who was just doing his daily walking with a friend got hit and the smallest
piece of shrapnal went into his chest and cut his aorta. We cracked open his whole chest and couldnt find
what was bleeding in time. I had to hold his chest then his organs back then after a while I had to
manually pump his heart with my hands for a while but he was gone.
Yesterday a hum-v was hit with an IED and we had 4 men come in to the ER. A SPC was pronounced
KIA he was 32. The others are ok just a broken leg and all have stitches in, on, or around their mouth. I
spoke with one of the men in ICU after we were done pinning, casting, and cleaning up big gashes in the
OR. I asked him if he was comfortable for the time being and he asked me to move his leg. He had 2
black eyes and could barely speak. I moved it for him and he grabbed my hand and told me thank you for
helping him and for all we were doing. I told him he was welcome and the biggest thanks went to him and
his men for being the ones on the front line that so many would never do. I told him the only thing he had
to do for us was to get better soon. A tear rolled down his face as he tried to smile. I sat and talked with
him for a while (I did most of the talking) then left to work out with my friends. I was going to see him off in
the helicopter this morning but he was gone before I got to work. One of his other friends we worked on
wasn't doing to well last night when I left so they had to medi-vac him out and get him to a better
treatment facility. We still have one soldier here and he looks a lot better today than he did yesterday. So
please keep all those families and soldiers in mind when praying. I would try to get an email out sooner
but they turn off the internet when a US Soldier dies. They do this until they have notified the family first
so the family isn't hearing it from other soldiers.
One of the patients that came in was a little 9-10 yr old girl. Some soldiers brought her in from the range
(where we go for target practice or practice throwing hand grenades) with a wrap around her hand. The
local kids love to go to the range and pick up brass or anything they can find and make jewelery. Anywho
apparently this little girl had picked up a grenade that never detonated and it went off in her hand. The
only thing we could save on her right hand was her thumb. She is recovering just fine and we (all the
females) spoil her. Her hair was a complete mess and FULL of dirt so a friend and I decided to wash her
hair. We had her sit and lay her head in the sink while we scrubbed. The water was as brown as if you
were washing a muddy pair of sneakers; it was bad. This little girl had probably never had her hair
washed like we do with lots of water and shampoo and conditioner. Her family comes from a tribe that are
like gypsies and travel around. Once we put the entire hotel size bottle of conditioner in her hair we just
started combing through her mats and realized she had fallen asleep. She was relaxed. We rinsed her shoulder blade length, layered hair out and I held her sitting up as my friend brushed one side of her
head; then we switched. I carried her back to her bed and she passed right out. Her vitals were the lowest
they'd been all day. The next morning my friend and I got to work early so we could do her hair. I made a
zig zag down the middle then let her pick her hair ties out and we gave her pig tails. She was cute as a
button and smiling all day.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Sgt. Teresa Somoza
Sgt. Somoza just came back from Afghanistan , 01-07-2012 after a year (she was deployed on 01-02-2011)
for her first deployment she was deployed to Iraq, came home for a few months and was then deployed to Afghanistan for her first deployment to Afghanistan,
now she has returned from her third deployment, she has a a older sister that is serving too, we welcomed home Teresa back in the summer of 2010, and a year before that, 2009, we welcomed home, her sisters husband, Sgt. Mason in Walnut Creek, so let's all come out and show our support for Sgt. Somoza, and her military family!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. Ryan Bowman
yan spent many of his summers as a youngster visiting his aunt and uncle living on Camp Pendleton. He looked forward to his summers there and knew that he wanted to be a Marine at a very young age.
When he was 15 he participated in Devil Pups, a ten-day long leadership/boot camp held at Camp Pendleton.
Ryan attended Granada High his freshman and sophomore year then graduated from Del Valle in 2010.
He signed up in the Delayed Entry Program while still in high school and left for boot camp on Father’s Day 2010. He graduated boot in September, completed his MCT training at Pendleton shortly after, and then off to Camp Lejeune for his MOS training as a combat engineer. Ryan was assigned to 7th ESB and deployed to Afghanistan Mother’s Day 2011. His unit was assigned the task of building fortifications and guard towers, searching and neutralizing explosives, and building bridges and roads throughout Afghanistan. While deployed he was promoted to Lance Corporal and celebrated his 20th birthday.
On October 24 while on a mission Ryan suffered a severe hand injury while in a MRAP. He underwent surgery in Afghanistan then was moved to Germany for another surgery. Within the week he was flown to Balboa Hospital in San Diego and underwent his last surgery. He is on the mend now, glad the rest of his unit is back home and ready for his leave.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USAF Airman, John Seuss
John is active in the Air Force and is currently an Airman Basic. He is a June 2009 graduate of Acalanes High School in Lafayette, CA.
He entered the Air Force in June 2011 and graduated from Basic Training at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, TX in July 2011. He is in Technical Training currently at the Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulfport, Mississippi in the 366th Training Squadron Detachment 6. He is in training to be a Structural Specialist.
He is expecting to graduate from Technical Training mid January. He has not been permanently assigned to a base yet.
We have seen the articles in the Danville Express about the Operation Welcome Home program and wanted to let you know about our son. Thank you for recognizing our service-members and encouraging our neighbors to do the same.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcp. Michael Arbour
*Michael Arbour is a Lance Corporal for the United States Marines. He was
a Clayton Valley High School graduate- recruited in 2007. Deployed to
Iraq in January 2009 and was stationed on the Syrian Border. He was with
the 2/1 where they patrolled the border for 7 months. He returned to Camp
Pendleton in August 2009 where he was then assigned to Regiment and has
been stationed at Camp Pendleton ever since as a guard, Humvee driver and
armed escort. In March of last year, he hurt his knee training and has
been on light duty since then. Having served his 4 years, he is now
honorably discharged from active duties with a Certificate of Completion
for Water Survival Advanced, War on Terror, Iraqi Campaign, National
Defense, Global War on Terrorism and Good Conduct Medal. *
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl. Tyler Heathorn
LCPL Tyler Heathorn (Born August 30, 1990)
When Tyler was between the ages of 10-12 he longed to join some sort of military organization. It wasn’t until his senior year in high school that he began researching the various branches and specialized programs that each offered. He graduated from Del Amigo in June of 2009. He left for USMC boot camp April 26, 2010.
He graduated from boot camp in July of 2010 and was assigned his MOS Combat Engineering. He then received more training in mine sweeping and demolition while assigned to Camp Lejeune, NC. Then he was assigned to the 7th ESB on November 29th, 2010
He deployed to Afghanistan May 5th, 2011.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SSgt. Roger Estrada, CA National Guard
His full name is Roger Blesnin Estrada. He is 31 yrs old. Roger is the oldest of 5 brother and sisters. he was borne and raise in San Francisco and Graduated from Galileo H.S.
He join the marines right after high school and serve for 8 yrs on which he did 3 deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. (Operation Iraqi Freedom)
He took one year off from the military, then he joined the Army National Guard reserve. he have being with them for 4 years. He is currently a SSG with the 870th MP. this is his first deployment with the Army.
During the time he took a year off from the military he joined the Police Academy to become a sheriff. He work for the Contra Costa Sheriff department for a year then he apply for Pittsburg Police Department on which he have worked for around 3 years. So when Roger is not in training with the guard he is working as a police officer.
Rogers dream as a child was always to be a police man he told me at one time. right at this point of his life he always say that he loves to help and protect people. The military is his life, is who made the man he is right now. He tried to get out of it ones but he miss that life and so he join in again.
Roger is the type of guy that have a lot of dreams and goals in life. What i love about that is that he make them possible. So far he have achieve many of his dreams.
He also Graduated from USF last year just a day before his deployment. His family and I are very proud of him for all of his success.
Roger and I married 11 years ago. We met in high school. We have being together during his deployments and time serve in the military.
we have two wonderful kids my son Blesnin 5 yrs, and Alyssa 3 yrs.
This deployment have being the toughest one for the two of us because it is the first one with kids. Our kids understand a little where daddy is and at their young age they remember all the good times we have had together and can't wait to have their daddy back home.
My husband have miss out my daughter's 1st and 3rd birthday due to his job with the Army. My son was so exited to know that his dad was able to make it for his 5th birthday this year when dad came for two weeks.
Roger is a great dad, he wants nothing but the best for his kids. all his sacrifices and tough jobs are for them. I couldn't find a better man to have kids with. Roger will do anything to give our kids a decent lifestyle. My kids will always know they can count on him for anything.
Roger have always being like a father figure to his brother and sisters. He always try to help on what he can with every body, and always worry for his family well being.
Roger is a humble guy who likes to help those in need. I am very proud to be married with a man you have done so much on his 31 years of life, and that have a lot more to give.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Josh Hansen
Josh did Boot Camp July 11 and he
graduated from Boot Camp (Fort Leonard Wood) on September 22nd. He is in
training at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas. He has completed his
certification for Nationwide Certification as an EMT and is now involved
in "combat medicine" training.
He will be stationed in Fort Bliss in El Paso Texas when he completes his
training in February. I will have to track down his unit and who his unit
will be when he gets to Fort Bliss.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Martin Sullivan and Tony DiDio
As this will be a wonderful unique Homecoming as DJ & one of his Best pals Tony DiDio, who has come home for R&R from Afghanistan, we would be Honored to invite you all to a party to be held in their Honor.
December 17th 5:00pm at the Brentwood Veterans Hall. Great Food, Family entertainment, and a night of Brotherhood like no other.
We would love to be able to serve you as well, this night for ALL you do for our community. Thanks again,
- Welcome Home Celebration for; US Army Sgt. Jeremie Wickman
Joined Oct 1997, Basic at Ft. Benning, Airborne school
RIP (ranger indoctronation program, I think is what it stands for)
3rd BAT, Ranger Regiment from April 98 - Dec 03
Recruiting from Feb 04 - March 07
1st Infantry Division from April 07 - Sept 09
Been to Afghanistan in 2001/2002/2009
Iraq in 2003
RTB from 2010 - Present
E-5 from 1998 - 2003
E-6 from 2003 - 2008
E-7 from 2008 - 2011
E-8 on the list Dec 8, 2011 (he found out last week!)
2 bronze medals
1 recruiting ring
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. Jeff Pharris
Jeff was born in Germany into a military family. His parents Kathy and Jim
were career Air Force, so Jeff grew up all over the world. His parents
retired and moved to Sutter Creek Jackson area in California where Jeff
went to Amador High School and graduated in 1994.
Jeff joined the Army in 1995. He completed his basic training in Fort
Benning, Georgia. After initially serving in the Army for seven years Jeff
joined the civilian ranks for five years. Jeff was a shining star and
successful in the private sector, however, he found that to be unfulfilling
compared to his military life. He re-enlisted in 2009, again to Fort Benning
for training. Jeff has found his life’s calling in the Army. He is stationed at
Fort Wainwright, Alaska with the 5-1 Cav Infantry division. Jeff’s passion
is to be in Special Forces. He went to selection and passed in January 2011,
however he chose to deploy with his unit to Afghanistan in April 2011.
While out on patrol one of the Strykers in their convoy hit an IED, Jeff was
awarded a distinguished metal for his actions. He has since been attached to
a Special Forces unit as he had already been selected. When he returns from
this tour he will be going to North Carolina to complete training and serve
in the Special Forces.
Jeff has been married to Jennifer since 1999. They have three children, two
girls Madison and Isabelle and one son Tristan. They are his life and loves.
Because of his family, Jeff is able to fulfill his passion serving proudly in
Jeff has many talents along with playing the sax which he learned in high
school. Jeff is an outstanding human being. We all are so proud of who he is
and what he stands for.
- UC Davis Mens Volleyball Invitational
- Danville's Fallen Marine, Lcp. "Chachi" Corral
- Welcome Home For, US Army, Sgt. Timothy Chris Leigh
Chris is stationed in Texas at Ft. Hood, he joined the Army in 2004, he is returning from Afghanistan,
this is his third tour, he is coming tomorrow, and his wife and daughters are flying in from Texas on Sunday
Chris was born in the UK, and grew-up in the UK, Italy, Texas, (Houston, Dallas area) His interests are
Video Gaming, sky diving, sharp shooter, and medieval history
- Welcome Home for US Army Sgt, 1st-class Kurtis Riley
Kurtis entered service at the age of 25 years old. His original M.O.S. was that of 11 Bravo Infantryman with an Airborne and Ranger contract. This meant that after his basic training he would go to Airborne School then through the Ranger Indoctrination Program (RIP). This all took place at Ft. Benning GA. From there in September of 2000, he reported to Korea on the DMZ in the joint security area. That is the first and second places he saw combat while he was attached to the 2nd Ranger battalion out of Ft. Lewis, WA. While in Korea he had the opportunity to attend Air Assault and Sniper Schools. Kurtis graduated top of his class for those. He also had the opportunity to complete SERE Survival School where he was the only one in his class to successfully escape and make it to the completion of the course. He then went to Korea as a PFC and through the course of eight months of training and a few combat experiences where his actions have found him promoted to the rank of E5 Sergeant. Kurtis was deployed in Korea when Sept 11, 2001 happened. They were immediately given live ammo and sent out to the border of North Korea to pull security and keep the piece. His stay in Korea was extended until November 2001.
His next duty assignment was 2nd Ranger battalion at Ft. Lewis. It was there he attended PLDC and Ranger School then transferred out of that “Battalion where he moved to 3/21 INF Gimlets the newly developed Stryker Brigade. Kurtis operated as a team leader and vehicle commander at this time. It was here that they were responsible for training the ROTC cadets for their field operations lead by Special Forces. He was met by the commanding officer who told him that he had read after action reports about Kurtis, and set up a special qualification course with the approval of the SODC commander and the Joint Chiefs of Staff to usher him into the School of my choice, for my chosen specialty. He was one of 2 out of 380 who earned both the Green Beret and Special Forces Tab.
Kurtis has seen action during three tours of Operation Iraqi Freedom and two tours of duty in Operation Enduring Freedom. Kurtis was an integral part of the Jessica Lynch rescue as well as his team helped capture Saddam's third in command. His other unclassified missions usually consisted of escorts for dignitaries, convoys, and training their own militarizes to defend their country. Kurtis has trained numerous militarizes all over the world, and has been to different countries conducting classified black ops. Kurtis left the military only to be called back to duty six months later but was medically retired after a diagnosis of PTSD. Amongst various metals, and accommodations, Kurtis has received a purple heart.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army, National Guard Sgt. Richard Osborn
Sgt. Richard Osborn's love for the military began as a child. Both his Mother and Father served their country with the Army, and his Step-Father was a career deep-sea diver in the Navy. It was no surprise when after graduating from Prague High School in '98 he left for the Navy. Richard served 4 years aboard the Bon Homme including a tour to the Middle East just after 9-11. When his contract expired, he left the military for the civilian world, but never completely. Richard got his A&P license and Worked at Tinker AFB, but decided he missed the military life, so in June of 2007 He joined the Army National Guard, where he turned his love of aircraft and prior Navel experience in to a fueling MOS. Sgt. Osborn is fresh off a 12 month deployment to Iraq with the 640th ASB out of Torrance, California. While in Iraq he and his team were responsible for safely fueling all the aircraft in and out of the base at Camp Taji. During his tour, Sgt. Osborn earned multiple medals and ribbons, including his Combat Action Badge, earned after the worst attack in the history of Camp Taji. His Family is thrilled to have him home safe and sound, and we thank you for helping us welcome our brave soldier home.
- Welcome Home Celebration for; USMC Lcpl. Brock Marcotte
He decided he wanted to join the Marines his second year of high school. His mom and I had to sign papers because he was only 17 went he joined. He was the first of 10 guys in the class of 2010 that joined the Marines. He joined because he is a Patriot and he wanted to join the toughest branch of the military. He graduated from San Ramon Valley High, June 2010. A week after graduation he went into boot camp. In the School of Infantry they made him a tow gunner. With the 3/4 "The Dark Side" is with Weapons Co. He became a LCpl while in Afghanistan. He turned 20 Sept. 16th while in Afghanistan. This was his first deployment. He is based at Twenty Nine Palms.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF A1-C Nathaniel Burrow
Nathaniel decided to join the Air Force after Graduating from Concord High School in June 2009. Growing up, Nathaniel played all kinds of sports and his ultimate dream was to play football in college.
Yet after graduating, he told his parents that he was going to join the Air Force, just like his older brother had.
This was a huge surprise to his family since football was his lifetime goal and he was only 17.
After convincing his parents to sign for him to join the AF, Nathaniel had a new goal in mind.
Nathaniel wanted to be a "PJ" and join the Pararescue Team, so he could do great things for his country.
In August 2009, Nathaniel went to Lackland AFB for Basic Training. After graduating from Basic Training, he started his Pararescue training. Unfortunately during that training, Nathaniel was injured and had to put this goal on hold.
Nathaniel continued on to train for Security Forces and graduated from Technical School in January of 2010.
In February 2010, Nathaniel was transferred to Ellsworth AFB in Rapid City, South Dakota.
Then in March of 2011, Nathaniel was deployed to Kuwait for six months.
Nathaniel has just returned to the U.S. and will be home with his family for a month before he heads to his next assignment in Spangdahlem, Germany.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. William Wright and Lclp. Joshua Rhoades
USMC Cpl. William Wright
Graduated Granada High 6/2006
Joined Marine Corps 10/2007, graduated MCRD Feb. 1, 2008
Stationed at 29 Palms after SOI in 4/2008
MOS= Infantry 1/7 Animal Company
Deployed to Iraq 2/2009-8/2009
Deployed on MEU 7/2010-1/2011
Volunteered to change units and go to Afghanistan 2/2011. Changed
Battalions 3/2011. Due to logistics, his company didn't go with the rest
of the battalion to Afghan, instead they went to Jordan 4/2011-6/2011 to
train the Jordanian military. Returned to 29 Palms and is separating
USMC Lcpl. Joshua Rhoades
Lcpl. Joshua Rhoades, He left for boot camp in July 2010, was assigned with to 3/4 deployed to Jordan to train the Jordanian Army, returned home, then volunteered to redeploy to Afganistan as one of the replacement troops. He is an 0331 Machine gunner.
- Welcome Home for, US Army Spc. Dennis Christensen
Dennis is currently deployed in Afghanistan, he deployed on July 18, 2011 from FT. Sill Oklahoma with the 214 BDE 2-4th Battalion, Bravo Company. This is not my son’s Company, he volunteered to go to school for a second MOS of Romeo-13 (Firefinder Radar Operator) to support Bravo Company and deploy with them. Bravo Company had soldiers that were not able to deploy and requested volunteers, my son stepped up! Dennis went to BCT at Fort Jackson, SC on February 23, 2011, his current duty station is Fort Sill, OK and his MOS was (M-13), this is his first deployment. His current rank is SPC!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LCpl Scott McEtchin and LCpl Brandon Alt
Scott graduated from Amador in 2009 and enlisted in the Marines in February 2010. He went to boot camp from June - Sept 2010. He was deployed to Afghanistan March of 2011 as a weapons expert (he blows up buildings and shoots the Shoulder Mounted Assault Weapon (SMAW)). He was in 1st Platoon, Bravo Company, 1/5 Marines. He arrived back in the U.S. on Monday, 10/17.
LCPL Brandon Alt is best friends with Scott and has been helping Cindy plan Scott's surprise. He is joining the McEtchin's at the restaurant where Spike is expected and has no idea he will be a honoree also.
We never got a chance to do a welcome home for Brandon before and this double surprise was so much fun!
Brandon attended Amador Valley High School and graduated in 2008. He enlisted in the Marines shortly after graduation. He has been deployed twice: once on a MEU and the second time to Afghanistan. During his service, he learned the Afghan language of Pashto and served as the squad's linguist. He also received recognition for preventing security breaches.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Chris Bogart
LCpl Christopher Bogart was born in Livingston, NJ on April 25, 1987. He moved with his family to Danville 8 months later when his father took a job in San Francisco.
Chris is a proud product of the SRVUSD attending Golden View Elementary School, Los Ceros Middle School and San Ramon Valley High School from which he graduated in 2005. While in high school, Chris tried out for the Lacrosse Team but 5 minutes into the tryout he miss judged a pass and the ball hit him in the head. He was knocked out for a short time and when he woke up, he decided Lacrosse was not for him. He then tried Volleyball where the ball was much softer. He excelled as a middle blocker and played on the school’s 2004 and 2005 NCS championship teams. The 2005 team posted an undefeated season, going 36 and 0.
Chris’s next venture was at Santa Barbara City College where he also played on the college volleyball team and a co-ed beach volleyball team. Only in CA can you play co-ed beach volleyball for college credit. As expected, he met a young lady on the court and when she transferred to the University of Texas in Austin, he went with her.
While in Austin, Chris attended Austin Community College and at 6’ 4” and 230 pounds, worked as a bouncer, now called Security Personnel, for a number of night clubs in downtown Austin. But Chris’s dream since he was 14 was to be a Marine. His father was a Marine in the early 60’s and after many heated discussions about college vs. the Marines, his parents finally gave him their blessing and in March, 2009, he was shipped out to Parris Island, SC for basic recruit training. After graduation from boot camp, he went to the Advance Infantry School at Camp Lejeune, NC and was then assigned to the reserve unit at Camp Mabry, TX.
In July of 2010, his unit, a weapons company, received orders for deployment to Afghanistan. The unit went to Camp Pendleton for 5 months of specialized training and in February of this year, shipped out to Camp Leatherneck in Afghanistan. While in country he received a commendation as a driver of a MATV and a MRAP while outside the wire and was also noted for his proficiency with demolitions and special weapons. His outgoing personality resulted in his building friendships with a number of NATO personnel and he was a favorite of the Afghan children.
On October 1st, Chris and his 123 person unit returned to Camp Mabry in Austin complete with a Patriot Guard escort and 400 anxious family and friends lining the street with welcome home signs. We would like to add our most heartfelt welcome home to Chris and to wish all of our service men and women currently in harms way, a safe & speedy return. God Bless America and God Bless our Troops.
Chris returned to Austin, TX from a 7 month tour of duty in Afghanistan on October 1st. The 123 men and women in his unit were escorted from the airport to Camp Mabry, a Reserve Training Center, by a police motorcycle unit and a 20 plus motorcycle contingent of the Patriot Guards. Over 400 families, friends and patriots greeted the unit’s arrival with welcome home signs, hugs, kisses and lots of tears.
Chris is going to be captured off-site by the Warriors Watch Riders and he should arrive in thunderous fashion by 1:15 PM. Don’t miss his arrival. The event is being co-sponsored by the Diablo Valley Flag Brigade.
So, we are asking all of you to come by, welcome our hero home, and join us in wishing all of our service men and women in harm’s way, a safe and speedy return.
- Welcome Home US Navy Seabee Petty Officer 1-C Chris Marquart
As he stood outside a construction trailer in Afghanistan, Petty Officer 1st Class Chris Marquart knew exactly what he was hearing.
“It was that unforgettable ‘whooossssh’ a rocket makes,” he said. “It was right at eye level, coming straight at me. I saw the smoke, heard the bang, and stuff started flying all over.”
A member of Navy Construction Battalion 18, a Reserve unit out of Ft. Lewis, Wash., the Oakley resident was starting his second tour in the war zone in August of 2010 when the rocket attack occurred. His unit, commonly referred to as “Seabees,” was part of a joint task force assigned to oversee $250 million in construction projects.
Marquart made it unscathed through his first tour in 2008-09, but not his second. As the 107mm rocket approached, he had enough time only to turn around and put his back to the incoming missile. It hit the ground 10 feet from him, showering him with shrapnel and hurling a chunk of hot steel into his back, just two inches from his spine.
- Welcome Home USAF, SSgt. Justin Horak
Justin is a Staff Sargent in theAirforce. He is stationed at Kadena AFB , and works as a Avionics Tech and is also in charge of Flight Plans. He has been at Kadena for 5.5 years , and total of 8 years in the service. And just got married , to a young lady from Okinawa , Yoko. Which she is here with him. Well, you know whats gotta be done , we are going to set Justin up at Black Bear Diner here in Oakley.We will roll in , park , go in , and do our Mug & Hug,Then we will grab them all up and escort back to the house, where Bryan and all the Members of Operation Welcome Home will be waiting. And you then know whats next.Gonna be fun ,for sure. This SSgt. has never gotten a Welcome Home , lets show him what his service means to us , and in turn this will also blow Yoko’s mind.
- Welcome Home US Army Pvt 2c Joseph Chatigny
Joseph grew up in Concord. He attended Clayton Valley High School and played on the JV and Varsity soccer teams. He earned his GED at Loma Vista Adult School. Joseph then went to Heald College and earned an AA in Business.
Joseph joined the Army in May of 2008. He completed his Basic Training at Fort Benning, Georgia in August and was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas with the 1st Cav Infantry Division. He was deployed to Mosul, Iraq by Christmas 2008 and returned home in November 2009.
Joseph and his wife, Erica welcomed their son, Mason on August 15, 2010. He then redeployed in January 2011 to Southern Iraq and returned in July. He just completed his 3+ years active duty with the Army and is moving to Colorado to pursue other interests.
Joseph earned the following badges and awards during his military service: Iraq Campaign Medal W/3 Campaign Stars, Army Commendation Medal, Meritorious Unit Commendation, National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Combat Infantryman Badge.
We are very proud of all that he has done to protect us and our wonderful country. We wish him all of God's blessings with whatever path he chooses for his future.
- DVFB Appreciation Dinner for Dawn Thornton
After all the work that Dawn did to help organize the 9-11 event, from organizing the vso's, to working with the fairgrounds, to getting together the beautiful shirts, and challenge coins for our speakers, and on and on and on, we all wanted to say "thanks" she is is a big asset to our org.
- Welcome Home, USMC Lcpl Jon Chase Nicotre
Folks, this was the marine that was due home about 2 months ago, and was in a Humvee accident,
he's finally getting his leave, so let's all come out and support his homecoming!!
Graduate College Park High School where he played Football and was an "All League" Lacross Goalie
Enlisted with Marine Corp, Delayed Entry Program at 17.
Graduated MCRD San Diego Boot Camp >October 2009
Graduated Combat Training, Camp Pendleton > December 2009
Completed MOS Training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo as Motor Transport Operator - March 2010
Left for Duty Station Camp Hansen, Okinawa. Japan, > March 2010
While stationed in Okinawa - Training and Missions in
Yaesubetsu, Japan > 2010
Up near DMZ. South Korea > 2011 (cant remember exact loaction)
- Welcome Home US Army Sgt. Kevin Wilson
Kevin was born in Pittsburg but raised most of his life here in Concord. Attended Concord High, playing freshman football and was also on the wrestling team. He graduated with his GED in 2009 and that summer he joined the Army. By May 2010 he completed boot camp in Ft. Benning Ga and was than stationed in Ft. Wainwright Alaska. He was deployed May 2011 to Afghanistan. Since his training he has earned AAM award and a Arcom award, excelling in everything he does. He is doing so much and feel such a comradery with his Corp members he is thinking of making a career in the army.
- Tenth Anniversary of 9-11 Tribute and Rememberance
The Tenth Anniversary 9-11 was a beautiful tribute! All the VSO's were there, KSFO made a "BIG" contribution with their 100x60 ft. flag, we paid tribute to our fallen, our veteran's, both past and present, and our first responders, as well as all those who lost their lives on that terrible day.
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl. Joe Kidd
Joe Joined in 2008 , he was 1st assigned to 2/6. Then assigned to 2nd Battalion 8th Marines,Then shortly after he was deployed to Helmand Province,Afghanistan.Spending 7 Months On Patrol, His Battalion came under fire several times as well as a IED attack, no injuries.He has the GWOT Medal,Afghan Campaign Medal,NDS Medal, NATO Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and several more
- Third Annual Purple Heart Outdoor Tour
The Purple Heart Outdoor Tour organizers have 4 Rangers from the 3rd Ranger Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment , and we
have the honor of seeing our FDNY Hero Paul Johnsen. There are just too many
Medals ,Ribbons , Citations to mention. Between the 4 of them they have deployed
Over 30 times. To hear their stories is unbelievable and to meet these heroes is
Priceless. Our FireFighter as well survived 9/11.
Who: Spc.Matt Tennill,Ssg. Matthew Jackson,Ssg. Fletcher,Sfc.Crosby,
FDNY FireFighter Paul Johnsen
- 2nd Annual Anniversary of the Warrior Watch Riders
It was a beautiful day at Sandee's spectacular ranch home for a celebration for the Warrior Watch Riders and all the "Operation Welcome Home" family, good food and social fun was had by all at Sandee Wiedemann's ranch and beautiful home, what fun!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. CA National Guard Rudolph Juarez
SGT Rudolph Juarez grew up in Antioch. He graduated from Antioch
High School in 2002. He joined the CA Army National Guard at 17 yrs old in
2001. After 9/11, SGT Juarez wanted to do something to serve his country
and to help protect his loved ones. SGT Juarez is married to Joleene, and
they have a daughter, Ariana, who will be one year old on 8-18-11. SGT
Juarez also has a wonderful Mom, Lupe, and two sisters. SGT Juarez is
currently serving a one year tour in Iraq with the 749th CSSB. He wears many
hats in Iraq but his main job is the Shop Foreman who keeps their Military
- Welcome Home US Army Spc. Ryan Johnson
Our son, Spc. Ryan Johnson, joined the Army his senior year of high school. He graduated high school in June of 2009 with a 4.0. On June 11 Ryan turned 18 and left for basic training July 7th. Ryan was an amazing son. He never got into any trouble, always had great grades and was very athletic. Ryan was a boy scout, played soccer, baseball, basketball and roller hockey. Ryan was an exceptional wake-boarder. He could do tricks on his board that we could only dream of doing. He also loved to snowboard, ride bmx bikes and skateboard. Ryan was promoted to Private First Class after basic training and is now Spc. Johnson. Ryan has been stationed in Colorado Springs on Ft. Carson but has spent the past 12 months in Farah Afghanistan. While deployed he has been recommend by two of his superiors to apply to West Point and is in the process of doing so. We are very proud of our son.
- Welcome Home US Army Spc. Damon Ryan Cole
Damon Ryan Cole was born April 16, 1982. He first became interested in the military in junior high, at
which time he began extensive research through his high school and college years. He followed the
military workout regimen and communicated via email with many servicemen. After graduating from
Advantage Preparatory High School in Santa Clarita, CA (class of 2000), he was accepted at California
Polytechnic State University San Louis Obispo in the Aeronautical Engineering School.
However, in September 2004 after a few years of college he enlisted in the Army. He headed to Ft.
Benning for Boot Camp followed immediately thereafter by Airborne school. He earned his Expert
Marksmanship Badge and graduated March 23, 2005.
Ryan was stationed at Ft. Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska. He was a part of the 4-25, 3-509th. While
there he was the SDM (Squad Designated Marksman). In May 2006 he took part in Operation Cobra
Gold where he earned his first International Jump Wings while training with the Thai Special Forces and
The unit was deployed to Iraq from September 2006 - November 2007. He spent time at FOB Kalsu,
FOB Liberty and Copper Patrol Base. His jobs included: Rifleman, SDM, Team Leader, Saw Gunner,
and Grenadier. He experienced combat regularly during his deployment, and lost several friends. While
there, he received the ARCOM (Army Commendation) medal for meritorious service and achievement
during action in Iraq.
He returned to Alaska in November 2007 where he earned his Expert Infantry Badge and received a
second Army Achievement Medal.
In November, 2008, Ryan was transferred to Vincenze, Italy where he joined the 173rd, 1-503rd. Before
his unit deployed to Afghanistan, he earned his NCO Professional Development Award for WLC (Warrior
He was deployed to Afghanistan and was based in Wardak Provence, COP Carwile from October 2009 –
November 2010. There he was Squad Designated Marksman and Squad Leader. While there, he
received a third ARCOM medal and several other deployment awards.
Once back in Italy he remained Squad Leader and Section SGT.
On July 1, 2011, Ryan left the army to go back to school full time. He was honorably discharged as an E4
Specialist and arrived home on July 2, 2011.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army National Guard, Niles Graham, USMC Lcpl. Thomas Saitz, Lcpl.Wilfredo Rios
Ever since Niles was a child he has always wanted to be a hero of some sort. He watched CHiPs religiously and refused to be the robber when playing "Cops and Robbers" with his older sister. His journey started after he graduated from Deer Valley High School in June of 2002. He immediately pursued his education at Santa Rosa Junior College majoring in Fire Technology and was a volunteer Fire Fighter with the Rio Vista Fire Department and the Oakland Fire Department. He then furthered his education at NCTI and LMC studying Para-medicine and became a licensed Paramedic with American Medical Response in June 2006. Still longing for something more he decided to go a step further and become a Law Enforcement Officer. He completed the P.O.S.T basic academy in June 2008 and was then sworn into the Antioch Police Department. His passion to protect and serve became so great he would stop at nothing to save lives. During the first six months of being on the force and working along side others that shared his passion, he and two other officers were involved in both a life saving and life threatening event that earned them the Medal of Valor in May 2009. His desire to protect and serve was so great he felt the need to take it a step further and enlist in the U.S Army National Guard to fight and protect his country in June 2010.
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Christopher Meredith
Christopher Hans Meredith
• Age: 21 (December 28, 1989)
• High school: Concord High School and Livermore High School
• Went to the recruiters office in Livermore and left for boot camp in April 2009
• Bootcamp: Fort Sill in Oklahoma (Graduated in July 2009)
• Medic Training: Forth Sam Houston (Graduated in October 2009)
• Stationed in Honolulu Hawaii
• Deployed to Iraq in July 2010, returned to Hawaii June 2011
• Current Rank: SPC (Specialist)
• Position: Combat Medic
• Medals: AAM, ARCOM
• Badges: CAB, CMB
• Hobbies: Cars, Gaming, Computers
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Derek Gaffett
Derek graduated from Liberty High School here in Brentwood Class of 2009. He ran cross country for Liberty High School coached by Peter Foster.
He graduated High School with Honors from the business/technology class. His junior year in High School he also was in the Marines DEP program. So 10days after graduating high school still 17 years old went off to Boot Camp. He turned 18 One month into Boot Camp. He graduated Boot Camp 09/11/2009 with HONORS as a PFC (private first class) He is a mechanic for the USMC. One year into the marines he now has moved up in rank to LCPL. He left for Afghanistan Nov.2010 and returned May 27th 2011 where he came home with a coin, due to his outstanding performance on a hard truck they had to get out of the water and other conditions to return the truck to fix. He is now coming home for the first time in 8mos. and his MOM & POPS want to give him a special WELCOME HOME LOVE! RECAP:
Derek entered Marines 06/2009 completed Boot Camp 09/11/2009 Left for Afghanistan Nov.2010 returned May 27th 2011. He did have an experience where an IED went off but no one was hurt that day because Derek was a hero!!!! MY HERO!!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for two US Army brothers, US Army Pfc. Kyle White, US Army Sgt. Derick White
It was a beautiful surprise to our two brothers, US Army Pfc. Kyle White, and his brother US Army Sgt. Derick White, a special day for both of them to be home at the same time, God Bless!
To see other welcome home albums, go to; www.diablovalleyflagbrigade.com
- Welcome Home US Navy HM3 David Polse
Dave graduated from Acalanes High School and has had a desire to be a fireman for many years. He graduated from Colombia Jr. College with a fire science certificate and knowledge that this alone would not get him the job he wanted. He joined the Navy and began his medic training. After graduation he went to Camp Pendelton for Corpsman training. He was assigned to China Lake Weapons Center and stayed there for two years. He was awarded Jr. Sailor of the Year, 2010. He was able to choose his next assignment and elected Marines 3d Division, Kanahoe Bay, Oahu, Hawaii. In Nov. 2010 His 2nd Bat. was deployed to Afghanistan, his H&S Co. was assigned Embedded Troop Training and he served at an FOB with 8 Marines and 30 or more Afghan Nationals. While in country he earned his FMF. He returned to Hawaii , thank God, On June 11, 2011.
- Independence Day Parade in Danville
It was a beautiful July 4th. parade in Danville today, I want to thank all the welcome home recipients, active service-members and Veterans, Marine Corp league, all the families of those service-members, Peter Richards, and his driver, G-man for providing the beautiful M-35 troop carrier, equipped with 50cal.
Ed McClellan for the use of the nice big trailer. because of you all, it was a great day at the parade! Happy Birthday Chris Miller!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Joshua Ballesteros
Joshua graduated from Liberty High School 2008. The following year he decided to join the military unsure of what branch he looked in to them all. (His great grandfather is an Army Vet and all of his great grandfather’s brothers were also in the Army and two gave their lives.) So he decided to follow his great grandpa.
Joshua decided to go in to the Army Infantry.
Joshua left for Basic and AIT Training on August 8, 2009 in Fort Benning, GA.
Joshua graduated on the 20th of November 2009 with the Delta Company, 2/ 54 Infantry Regiment, and 1st Platoon. *192 Infantry Brigade.
After he graduated Basic and AIT training he was stationed at Fort Stewart, GA to prepare for deployment.
Joshua was deployed to Northern Iraq on July 10, 2010 with Unit 3rd battalion – 15th Infantry Regiment. (3-15 Infantry Battalion ) Joshua’s jobs consisted of (what he called Missions) encountering IED’s, training Iraq’s soldiers’. Joshua is also a Scout and going forward to becoming a Sniper. Joshua will be returning from deployment at any time now he should have been back in the US yesterday (June 14, 2011) but still waiting to hear from him.
Joshua received an Army Accommodation award/medal and Combat Infantry Badge.
(I hope this is the correct spelling and names) before he left Iraq. Joshua became sick right before he was to come home from deployment so he had to stay in Iraq and then fly to Germany for medical treatment. (From what I understand he missed the home coming with his unit.)
Joshua will be stationed at Fort Steward, GA and I think sniper school may be in is future.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Navy Corpsmans, Kevin Bradley and Jon Ratkus s
Kevin Bradley is coming in from Camp Pendleton on Wed, the 22nd, with another Corpsman, Jonathan “Jon” Ratkus. The 2/5, part of the 31st MEU, just got back from Japan where they did Earthquake/Tsunami Relief (HA/DR).
Kevin is going to “extend” his contract with the Navy and start MARSOC training soon. On this last deployment , Kevin was awarded a Certificate of Commendable Performance. He also won “High Range Shooter” on the Known Distance Course (341 out of a possible 350 points). He was only tied by a Marine Sergeant.
Kevin came home about a year ago, where we held a welcome home for him at the Town of Danville, he also got his picture, and story about "Operation Welcome Home"
in Penthouse Magazine!
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Cpl. Paul Nawrath
Paul Nawrath is a 2007 Monte Vista graduate. He joined the United States Marine Corps shortly after finishing high school. From August 2008 to March 2009, he was deployed to Iraq where he served in the infantry squad helping to train the Iraqi Police force and fighting at the front line. In 2009 the town of Danville gave him an honorable welcome home. Shortly after his welcome Paul was deployed again, this time to Afghanistan, from November 2009 to July 2010.
In June 2010 Paul received the Certificate of Commendation by James Baker, Lieutenant Colonel and Commandant of United States Marine Corps, for demonstrating decisiveness, leadership, and courage when under fire taking out the enemy firing position and allowing to save the lives of 2 injured squad team members.
In July 2010 he was also given the Good Conduct Medal for his selfless service, faithful adherence, courage and commitment by James Baker, Lieutenant Colonel, Commandant of USMC.
Paul Nawrath received his honorable discharge from the Marine Corps on June 7th 2011 after serving his 4 years. He will receive financial support to go to college. His current carrier goal is to become a fire fighter. He will start training at the Las Positas College in July.
- Welcome Home USMC Cpl. "Will" Wilson
Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, September 13, 1923;
Enlisted in the USMC on December 9, 1942;
Basic Training at Parris Island, South Carolina; 1942/1943;
Quartermaster School at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina, 1943
Joined Hq Co, 3rd Batallion, 28th Regiment, 5th Division in February 1944
Set sail for the "Pacific Campaign" September, 1944
Member of initial "D" Day Assault Wave on Green Beach 1 on IWO JIMA on February 19, 1945 and was personally engaged in active combat for all 37 days of the battle to secure
the island for the Allies....He lost many of his closest fellow Marines in this courageous, pivotal battle.
Details of the battle for Iwo Jima:
-Marines suffered 26,000 casualties (6,000 killed taking Iwo Jima)
-Twenty-two (22) Marines were awarded Congressional Medals of Honor
---the most ever awarded for a single engagement.
-On an island only 7 square miles in size
-Almost 100,000 men were locked in mortal combat. 21,000 Japanese died in place.
-Iwo Jima is the benchmark Marines use to judge all other battles.
Summing up Iwo Jima: "Uncommon Valor was a Common Virtue"
-His unit (28th Regiment) raised the flag on Mount Suribachi, immortalized by Joe Rosenthal in his iconic photograph.
Served with Occupation forces in Japan (Kyushu) until December 1945;
Honorable Discharge at Camp Pendleton, CA January 17, 1946.
Reenlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve 1946, and was called to active duty on October 2, 1950 and actively served until Aprl 13, 1951.
USMC Medals/Commendations for IWO JIMA combat service:
Presidential Unit Citation with Star awarded to 28th Regiment, 5th Marine Division;
US Navy Unit Citation with Star awarded to 28th Regiment, 5th Marine Division;
Pacific Theater with Star;
US Navy WW II Occupation Medal
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl. Nicholas Klein
Another beautiful Welcome Home in Pleasanton for USMC Lcpl. Nicholas Klein, hometown marine, we wish you all the best, God Bless!
- Welcome Home USMC Cpl. Alison Buedel
Another beautiful Welcome Home Celebration in Concord, for USMC Cpl. Alison Buedel, she is leaving the marines and going to Culinary School, she was a chef before joining the marines, best of luck, Ali, God Bless!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SSgt. Rick Seymour
It was a beautilful welcome home for US Army SSgt. Rick Seymour and his wife, Danielle.
Daughters. Zamera, Serenity and son Ricky W Seymour the second.
His deployments Jan. 2001 to June 2001 Kosovo
Irag Sept 2003 to March 2004
Irag Dec 2005 to Nov 2006
Irag Dec 2007 to March 2009
Irag March 2010 to March 2011
Ricky is based out of Colorado Springs Fort Carson Colorado.
Enlisted in November 2nd 1999 Airborne North Carolina
Certificate / Commendations
3 Army achievement medals
4 Army commendation medals
3 Good conduct medals
1 Meritorious unit commendation medal
- ConocoPhillips and the Vietnam Vets. of Diablo Valley presents, 2011 Walk of Honor
The VietNam Veterans of Diablo Valley, one of the most active community service veteran groups in the east bay is requesting support for this special “walk” to honor those who serve or have served. Community members are encouraged to attend and “walk in the name of a veteran or service member” this Saturday - Armed Forces Day. Small American Flags will be given to each participant for the walk.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Daniel Hazzard
USMC Lcpl. Daniel Hazzard, lived in Livermore his whole life, graduated from Livermore High in 07. Joined the Marines in 09 as a member of the 3/5 India Co. He is a Saw Gunner in the 0311 rifle squad, he has returned from the dangerous town of Sangin, Afghanistan. We wish you all the best, good luck, and God Bless!
- Welcome Home US Army Mstr Sgt Erwin Ricafrente
Pleasanton really came out to welcome home their local hometown soldier, MSgt. Erwin Ricafrente, born in the Philippines in 1970, Erwin joined the Army in 1988, so with this much time in the Army, Erwin was no stranger to the microphone, what a great guy, and a beautiful family! Good luck, and God Bless,
- Welcome Home, US Army Spc/4 Clinton Rarey
Another great welcome home in Brentwood, for US Army Spc/4 Clinton Rarey, just married and is off to Las Vegas for their honeymoon! God Bless you Clinton, we love you!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. John (Mitch) Lappin lV
Danville welcome's home one of their local town marines, USMC Cpl. John (Mitch) Lappin lV. A beautiful early morning celebration,
for a great American, Mitch, have a nice time on your leave, God Bless you, we wish you all the best! You can also checkout all the other welcome homes, www.diablovalleyflagbrigade.com
- Welcome/Sendoff Celebration for US Army Pvt. Anthony Di Dio of Oakley.
It was a beautiful Morning for a Welcome/Sendoff for Oakley's US Army Pvt. Anthony (Tony) Di Dio, and his soon to be bride, Korie
They have plans to be married next weekend on the 7th. the day before Mother's Day. Then off to Colorado to meet up with his unit, and probably off to Afghanistan. We wish you two, a beautiful life, Good Luck, and God Bless!
- Welcome-Sendoff for US Army Pvt. Kyle Armstrong
Discovery Bay was a beautiful setting for a welcome/send off
of US Army Pvt. Kyle Armstrong, God Bless, wish you well!
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Sgt. AJ Castinado
It was a early Sat. morning welcome home celebration for Brentwood's own local soldier, US Army Sgt. AJ Castinado,
home of Afghanistan. What a beautiful way to start your weekend,
enjoy our time off AJ, God Bless You!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Eric Enriguez
It was a beautiful Friday evening in Antioch to welcome home, local hometown soldier, US Army Spc. Eric Enriguez, him and his brother are airborne, just home from Afghanistan, stationed in Anchorage, his flight was canceled two weeks ago due to bad weather, his family and friends were very glad to see him, God Bless You, Spc. Enriguez!
- Welcome Home Celebration For US Army 1st Lt. Jeff Salem
Another beautiful Welcome Home Celebration for US Army 1st. Lt. Jeff Salem, Helicopter pilot with the "Fighting Sixth 1-6 Cav"
Seem like the whole City of Dublin came out on this chilly nite to
welcome home this local soldier, Congressman McNerney,
Dublin Vice-mayor, Kevin Heart, Councilman Don Diddle, BSM's
and a host of about 18 VFW-AL Veterans from al around the Bay Area. Dublin PD, Sherriff, Fire, and Bagpiper, Army mom, Donna Willy. Thanks to all of you that made this event so special for
Lt. Salem and his family. God Bless you Jeff!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc. Eric Fuller
It was a damp day, but great to welcome home our Concord soldier! US Army Pfc. Eric Fuller, home from Afghanistan for two weeks, then back to Afghanistan, to serve another tour.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Navy Corpsman, Joe Burns
Another wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for USN Corpsman, Joe Burns of San Bruno, Joe was injured by a ied in Afghanistan, and comes home for some r&r, he was quiet surprised by all the well-wishers from all the folks from the San Bruno area, This alub is left open, to do with as you wish, send to friends, view the library, go to www.diablovalleyflagbrigade.com Happy Birthday Joe! God Bless you!
- Welcome Home US Navy MM-3 Mark Laxner
- Welcome Home Celebration for USN Lt. John Benjamin Fields
It was a beautiful, early morning welcome home in Livermore for USN Lt. John Benjamin Fields, home from his 7th tour, for just one day, then off to start his 8th tour, wow! From the folks lined up on both sides of the street, there was 200+ supporters to greet him home, his sister, Debra and her sister had the entire front of the home decorated, down to the red carpet out to the street, and yellow ribbons on all the trees, what a beautiful site! Well-wishers from Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan's Office, to Granada High Cheerleaders, everyone from Livermore and Pleasanton were there! God Bless you, John, we wish you all the best!
If you would like to see other welcome homes, go to www.diablovalleyflagbrigade.com
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC 1st.Lt. Garrett Johnson
A beautiful welcome home was had by all that came out to thank USMC 1st Lt. Garrett Johnson
Training at Quantico:
Attended officer candidate school (OCS)
Commissioned as 2nd Lt.
Graduated the basic school (TBS)
Graduated infantry officer course (IOC)
3rd Battalion, 3rd Marines stationed at Kaneohe Bay (K-Bay), Hawaii
India Company, platoon commander
Deployed May-Dec. 2010 to Afghanistan, Helmand Province, Nawa District
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USN ABH-3 Petty Officer, Nicholas Beyer
Nicholas King Beyer is in the Navy and has been on the carrier the USS Harry S. Truman in the Persian Gulf since early last May. His son's name is Blake and he will be 3 years old in Jan. This was his second long deployment. While on his first, he missed his son being born and did not get to meet his son until he was 5 months old. Nick is 25 and grew up in Discovery Bay, we moved here when he was 6. He now lives in Norfolk VA where he is stationed. Nick's original enlistment was up in November and he has re-enlisted in the Navy, so he will be in for at least another 3 years. He graduated from boot camp at the Great Lakes Facility near Chicago in Jan. 5 years ago. He was in school/training in Pensacola, Florida and has been stationed in Norfolk on the Truman for the last several years. Nick is an ABH 3, Petty Officer 3rd Class.
- Welcome Home/Send Off for USMC LClp. Nathan Hall
We had a beautiful welcome home at the Marines Memorial Building in SF. for USMC LCpl. Nathan Hall. Nathan is being deployed to Afghanistan for another tour.
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC MSSgt Ford Jacobs
It was a beautiful sunny day, "for a change", in Livermore for the welcome home of our USMC MSSgt. Ford Jacobs, home of his "FIFTH" tour. He's been in Iraq, (3) tours, and (2) in Afghanistan, where he now is deservedly stationed in Hawaii. Thank God we have such brave marines as MSSgt. Ford, they are the reason we have this free country! God Bless you, Ford!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Cordell Powell
A beautiful welcome home for US Army Spc. Cordell Powell was had by all that came out to show their support for this local town soldier, what a wonderful gift for Tracy and family to have Cordell home for Christmas!
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Pfc. David Apoian
It was a rainless evening for a change, for welcoming home US Army Pfc. David Apoian from Livermore. David has completed his ranger school and would like to be a medic and advance to Physicians Assistance program as soon as possible.
We wish you all the best!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy HM3 Travis Livingston
Another wet nite for a welcome home in Blackhawk for our local home town hero, US Navy HM3 Travis Livingston. Thanks to all the groups, BSM's VFW Post 237, PMF, Mike Conklin, representing the City of Danville, Counsel-man Mike Doyle, all the riders from WWR, for making this evening special for Travis and the Livingston family.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Cameron Crow
It was a wet nite, but a beautiful nite to welcome home USMC Lcpl. Cameron Crow to his home town of Brentwood.
- Welcome Home/Send off for USMC Brandon Cawley
It was a great welcome home for USMC Brandon Cawley
of Oakley, Jim Frazier, Mayor of Oakley came out with two
of his fire engines co. Lots of folks came to wish him well,
what a wonderful Christmas surprise!
- Welcome home celebration for, US Army Spc. Liberato Villaviencio
It was a great afternoon, evening, in Pleasanton to thank our home town soldier, Spc. Liberato Villaviencio, also known as "V"
a great guy, that has served our country honorably! We all Thank-you! and God Bless you!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Kevin Swain
It was a beautiful sunny day for a wonderful welcome home.
Spc. Kevin Swain is home for Christmas, and Joe and Paula could not be happier!
- Retirement gathering for Mayor Sue Rainey
We all gathered to thank our Mayor Sue Rainey for her service to our City, and for her service to our Country.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, The Broussard Brothers, US Army 2 Lt. Micheal Broussard, Cpl. Christopher Broussard
What a packed house at the Veterans Memorial Building in Brentwood Friday nite to welcome home our two Broussard brothers, along with their grandfather, Korean war vet. Victor Pastor. Oakley's finest, and Oakley and Brentwood's fire departments were in on the escorts as well.
These Rangers combined, have over 15 years in the US Army!!
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl Zachary Martinson
It was another great welcome home for USMC Zach Martinson, after two tours in Afghanistan, he is leaving the Marines. What better way to spend Thanksgiving week then thanking this marine! God Bless you Zach, we all wish your new life, all the BEST!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Kevin Kliem
It was a rainy day at setup on Sunday for US Army Spc. Kevin Kliem, but just before he arrived, the rain stopped, the clouds parted, and it was a beautiful ceremony, even the Boy Scouts came out to thank our soldier, a lot of VFW, and Bob Hooker,
KWVA came out. Kevin is home for two weeks, then back to Afghanistan for six months.
- Concord Vet. Center Grand Opening Celebration
A grand celebration was had by all for the new location and grand opening of the Concord Vet Center. Lots of Bay Area military dignitaries were present, along with a lot of history. The new building shows off one of the Bay Area's finest collections of historical military artifacts, a must see, all surrounded in a sureen
water fall setting, beautiful!
- 2010 Veteran's Day Celebration for Fremont Postal Workers
It was an early morning Veteran's Day celebration for all the 42 Vets. at the Fremont Post Office. we had US Army Sgt. Johnson, from Travis, BSM's from Fremont, Dick Seavey from AL, Danville,
along with 42 Veteran postal workers, most which are Viet Nam era Vets. It was a great time!
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl. Johnny Silva
What a great welcome home turnout for USMC Lcpl. Johnny Silva, The community of Martinez really came out, VFW, and AL members, BSM's, and four firetrucks!!! I have never seen four trucks at one event, ever! Johnny is a great guy, and a great MARINE!! God Bless you Johnny!
- Welcome Home USMC Cpl. Douglas Huggard
It was a beautiful even for a welcome home celebration, a great crowd came out, Concord counsel-woman Laura Hoffmeiser, Phil Munley from Veteran's resource VA, BSM's from both Chapter 20 and 101, Pleasanton Military Families, BART, JROTC from MTHS,
and lots of riders from WWR, and family, friends, it was nice to see are marine and the whole Huggard family. God Bless you,
Douglas, we wish you well!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USN Lt. Sean Gannon
Another wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for, USN Lt. Sean Gannon, home for a month, at his home in Danville, A proud American Sailor, in his beautiful uniform, God Bless you, Lt. and your whole family! Good luck with your future, as a fireman.
- Welcome Home US Army SSgt. James Ryan
A beautiful day in the park in Pleasanton for a welcome home celebration for US Army SSgt. James Ryan, an American soldier,
and a joy to talk to about his time in the Army, God Bless you,
SSgt. Ryan. We wish you the best of luck!
- Welcome Home US Army SSgt. Agustin Torres
It was a beautiful welcome home celebration at the VFW Hall in Antioch Saturday nite to welcome home US Army SSgt. Agustin Torres, he has not been home for almost three years, and will return back in a week, it was a pleasure to meet this fine American soldier! God Bless you, SSgt.Torres, and best of luck!
- Welcome Home USN Boswain 1st-C Raymond Hoke
It was another wonderful evening for a welcome home for a great American Sailor, USN Raymond Hoke, his wife, Mai, and their daughter, Kylee. Mother, Ginny was very surprised! God bless, Raymond, and good luck!!
- 9th Annual 9-11 Remembrance
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Elliott Loewenstein
Another beautiful welcome home, for our second Tenth Mountain soldier, in two days! It's soldiers like Elliott, that make this country the BEST!
- Welcome Home Celebration n for Us Army Pvt. Austin Brilz, 10th. Mountain
It was another beautiful evening for welcoming home our local soldier, US Army Pvt. Austin Brilz, home on R&R from Afghanistan, City Counsel-woman, Laura Hoffmeiser, the CPD, the CC Firefighters, a lot of BSM's, along with a host of WWR and escort vehicles, "Black Widow ll" and the Blue Angels, 9-11 corvettes, made for a beautiful showing of support, the cake was made and donated by Gold Star parents, Ed and Cecelia Hardley, who lost their son in law, Ben Tollifson a couple years ago from WC, This is by far, the most beautiful cake, I have ever seen at these events, Cecelia put 16 stars around the base to honor the fallen in the 10th Mountain.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Ben Wigley
It was a beautiful afternoon in Pleasanton for a welcome home,
US Army Spc. Ben Wigley is leaving the military to seek an education in Solar energy. Lots of luck in your new life!
- Welcome Home US Army Lt. Col. Derrick Boler
Discovery Bay is a wonder supportive town to have a beautiful Welcome Home! The streets were lined with signs and ribbons, the police, sheriff, and the fire department came out in force, as well as all the neighbors, it was really a sight!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SSgt. Anthony Rodregous
Another great welcome home, for SSgt Rodregous, 82th Airborne, folks he has 5 tours deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, and now will be leaving the Army, going to college, what a turn-out of supporters to thank him for his service to our country! It seemed that everyone on his street came to say thanks, PD from Concord and Walnut Creek,
and lots of VFW posts, BSM's, and a host of other support groups! I was very impressed!
- Welcome Home US Army Spc. Edward Freyling
It was a beautiful afternoon in San Jose, to finally give this soldier what he so rightly deserves, a honorable welcome home! His mother, four sisters, and one younger bother, were
amazed at the honor and recognition that the community showed Spc. Edward Freyling, a proud Viet Nam Vet. God Bless you Ed!
- July 4th. parade in downtown Danville
We could see people crying when we rolled up with this huge "Flag Float" 14 ft. high, 15 ft. long with, "Where Freedom Flies"
from singer, songwriter, Diana Nagy of Danville, playing in the background, it was beautiful!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SSgt. Richard Baydo
This was an extra special welcome home for our home town buddy, US Army SSgt. Richard Baydo. In the beautiful setting of the Awakenings Church, with our friend, Pastor Dan Helix.
It was a long time coming, emotional event. One that Richard and Jenn will remember for some time.
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl Jennifer Harper
Another beautiful Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Jennifer Harper. Even with the 100 degree heat, a large crowd turned out to support and thank this fine marine and welcome her home. She was overwhelmed with emotion when we was escorted up by the WWR and the "Black Widow 2" to see all these folks waiting at her home in Pleasanton.
- 2010 Phillies Baseball
What a wonderful season of juniors baseball under the direction of manager, Dan Siri, and coaches Andre Hill, and Brad Shannon. It's a blast watching the boys have fun, and win!!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Nick Smith
This was a awesome Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Nick Smith. His mother Pamela, took him and his wife, Beth and family to the Black Bear diner, where the WWR and the Oakley PD, East County Fire engine 93, all escorted him in the "Black Widow II" to his mothers home, what a sight!
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Navy Corpsman HMSN Kevin Bradley
It was another beautiful welcome home at the Town Hall Monday eve in Danville. Mayor Doyle hosted the ceremony,
as the crowd watched the corpsman arrive, Diana Nagy sang
her beautiful songs, it was very special!
- Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Ben Phillips
After returning home from his tour in Afghanistan, Ben will be leaving the Army, and moving on with his life, he was picked up by WWR at the Amtrak station, escorted home in the "Black Widow 2" roadster, and a crowd of bikes. He was truly surprised!
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. Chris Broussard
It was a windy afternoon in Oakley for the Welcome Home of US Army Sgt. Chris Broussard, coming home from (3) tours
of duty as a Ranger, has more metals and achievement ribbons than I have space to write, He will take two weeks off, head to Yosemite and go on a Mexican cruise, than off to Afghanistan
for a forth tour! WOW, Did I mention that his brother is a Ranger too!
- Welcome Home Celebration for USAF TSgt. Ben Fandinola
Welcome Home Celebration for USAF TSgt. Ben Fandinola
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. Maj. Ben Inderbitzen
The setting could not be more perfect for this Nt. Livermore
Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Sgt. Maj. Ben Inderbitzen, 27 years in the military! Special Forces, has been in alot of conficts, and is soon leaving for Afghanistan. We honored this soldier in a beautiful old (100+) year old barn on a beautiful ranch.
- Welcome Home US Army Sgt. Teresa Samoza
It was a beautiful day to welcome home US Army Sgt. Teresa Somoza, she has a big military family, turns out we welcome homed her husband a year ago in Walnut Creek, Sgt. Mason
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Lcpl Joshua Simpson
Welcome Home Celebration for USAF TSgt. Ben Fandinola
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy Seaman Kris Smith
- Welcome Home USN PO2C Andrew Comisky
Welcome Home Celebration for US Navy Petty Officer 2C Andrew Comisky
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Pfc Matthew Grubb
- Welcome Home for USAF 1CA Johnny Woodman
A very cold nite in Livermore for Johnny's welcome home
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Sgt. Anthony Dutton
Another beautiful day for a welcome home, Sgt Dutton is home from his tour in Afghanistan
for a week, then to be retrained for Embassy Security
- Welcome Home Viet Nam Vets
It was a beautiful day to welcome home and thank all the Viet Nam Vets!
- Welcome Home Celebration US Army Spc. Taylor Gavello
Another wonderful welcome home event for this Army medic from Livermore
- Welcome Home USMC Pvt. James Sharp
It was a beautiful day for a welcome home celebration for James, just graduated from training
at Camp Pendleton. He was totally surprised! His mother insisted that he wear his dress blues, all his friends agreed that he looked good!
- Welcome Home USN PO2C David Wainscott
A beautiful Day for welcoming home David after being out at sea on the USS Georgia, nuclear submarine
- Welcome Home Capt. Elizabeth Hultgren
It was Walnut Creeks first and one of the biggest celebrations in a while for this great American US Army nurse. Everyone came out for her arrival.
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USAF A1stC Brittany Rumsey
Once again we all gathered at her home with the Mayor, Laura Hoffmeister, the CC Sherriff,
Fire Department, and of course our very own JROTC honor guard from Mt. Diablo High School, along with Boy Scout 364 Troop from Concord, it was beautiful!
- Welcome Home US Army Spc. Jason Gardner
Another beautiful Welcome Home Celebration for, US Army Spc. Jason Gardner
- Welcome Home US Army Spc. John Foster
A wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for US Army SPC John Foster
- Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Sgt. Karie and SSgt. Peter Stevens
A great Welcome Home for two marines, Sgt. Karie, and SSgt. Peter Stevens
Husband and wife and their two beautiful children!
- Welcome Home Warriors!
Sentinels of Freedom and the City of Danville honor (8) servicemembers, Sunday
at the Vet. Hall's last event.
- Welcome Home two Lafayette's hometown soldiers
A very beautiful Welcome Home for (two) soldiers!
US Army Spc. Ranger, Patrick Keating, US Army 1st. Lt. Marco Oriti
- Welcome Home USMC Cpl. Tyler Johnson
Welcome Home Celebration for
USMC Cpl. Tyler Johnson
- Another Welcome Home for US Army Spc. Rikki Revilla
Another Welcome Home for US Army Spc. Rikki Revilla
- Welcome Home USMC Lcpl Tony Noble
Another Beautifull Welcome Home Celebration for, USMC Lcpl. Tony Noble
- Welcome Home Celebration for two sons, 1st. Lt. Todd White, Lt. Justin White, and their father, US Army Spec.5, Larry Wh
Another beautiful welcome home celebration for two sons, 1st. Lt. Todd White, Lt. Justin White, and their father, US Army Spec.5, Larry White. We could not have a more beautiful setting, way up on a hill, overlooking Diablo Country Club.
- Tribute to all the Veterans of the Walnut Creek Post Office
A Beautiful Tribute to all the Veterans of the Walnut Creek Post Office,
Our very own young patriot, Austin Schoenthaler was asked to speak
to all the veterans at the post office
- Welcome Home for USMC LCpl. Paul Nawrath
Another wonderful Welcome Home for USMC LCpl. Paul Nawrath at the Town Hall in Danville
Mayor Newell Arnerich performed a honorable ceremony of this fine marine!
- LAFAYETTE FLAG BRIGADE Presents, 8th Annual 9-11 Rememberance and Tribute
LAFAYETTE FLAG BRIGADE Presents, 8th Annual 9-11 Rememberance and Tribute
- US Army Spc. Kester Willy
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army PFC Nick Orman
A wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for US Army PFC Nick Orman
The Mayor, Jim Davis, PD, Fire, Boy Scouts, Antioch Military Families, Blue Star Moms, and the WHOLE neighborhood came out for Nick! It was GREAT!!!
- USAF Airman 1st Class Kristie Miller
Another wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for Kristie, just home from Afganistan
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC SSgt. Robert Murphy
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Kevin Fonseca
- Welcome Home Celebration for (four) USMC Servicemembers
- Welcome Home Celebration for USN Boatsman E3, Trevor Carter
- Welcome Home for USMC Lcpl. Douglas Huggard
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Robert Maggio
- US Army SSGT Jay Wilkerson honored by Sentinels of Freedom and City of Pleasanton
- Wecome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Ryan Schultz
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army, SSGT. Jay Wilkerson
- Reinlistment Celebration for Spike aboard the USS HORNET
- Welcome Home for Chesley Sully Sullenberger III
- Funeral Services for US Army PFC Benjamin Tollefson
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Victor Ramirez
- Special PGR Photos
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Capt. Tom Daggett
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Joel Catalano
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army PFC Chris DePredis
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Cory Loob
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LcCpl Tyler Schmidt
- A wonderful Welcome Home Celebration for 110 Marines from 4th Force Recon, Camp Pendlton
A beautiful evening in Alameda at 4th Recon USMC combat training center base in Alameda for 110 marines coming home in 3 buses from Camp Pendelton. There were 800 parents and friends to greet them!
- Wecome Home for USMC LcCpl Sean Baltierra
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC LcCpl Matthew Valenzuela
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC, 7 Marines from Longshoreman's Platoon in Concord at the Concord Vet Center
- Spike's reenlistment party
- Welcome Home Celebration, USAF Airmen 1st class Joshua Jorgensen
- 9-11-08 Rememberance Event
- Sept 11th, 2008
- 7th Annual 9-11 Remembrance and Tribute
7th Annual 9-11 Event
- Welcome Home Celebration, USMC Cpl. Matthew Yarbrough
- Welcome Home Celebration for U.S.Army Spec. Robert Baker
- Welcome Home Celebration, US Army Spc. Robert Baker
- Drop Box
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC Cpl. Alan Wiggins
- Welcome Home Celebration for US Army Spc. Daniel Cuadra
- U.S. Marines Recruiting Office Rally vs Code Pink and World Can't Wait
- Welcome Home Celebration for Lcpl. Jesse Pearson
- USMC Lt. Matt Esposito's Welcome Home Celebration
- Hat Off America Moms
- Welcome home Cpl. Kenneth Yonker
- Sentinels of Freedom Celebration
- Welcome Home Celebration for USMC, Michael, Joshua Woodruff
- March 22nd Berkeley No Spend Zone
- Welcome Home Celebration and Birthday for US Army SGT Mariela Meylan (Mason)
- Bryans Stuff
- Move America Forward vs Code Pink
- CPL Michael Ekland