Volume 1, Issue 3

T he h

Published in the interest of the Soldiers and families of the 1st Cavalry Division Rear Detachment


America’s First Team

F ronT

August 2007

Making wishes come true ...

August 2007

Coming Soon
Happenings and goings on...
Thursday, Aug. 23 Teen FRG Event Seaworld Tuesday, Aug. 28 Purple Heart Ceremony 10 a.m., Catering and Conference Center Sunday, Sept. 2 Tween FRG Event Round Rock Monday, Sept. 3 Labor Day Wednesday, Sept. 5 Prayer Breakfast 7 a.m. Iron Horse II DFAC Tuesday, Sept. 25 Purple Heart Ceremony 10 a.m., Catering and Conference Center Wednesday, Sept. 26 Town Hall Meeting 6:30 p.m., Catering and Conference Center


A look inside this issue ...
Coming Home
1st Cavalry Division Redeployment Windows Page 3 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Home Front News

First Team family keeps busy with household projects Page 4 First Team teen takes on ‘hair raising’ charity event Page 5 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Family First

Baghdad Brief

‘Cold Steel’ has a day in the park Page 6 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Coalition Soldiers rescue Iraqi boy from well Page 7 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Town Hall

On the cover ...

Helpful Info

Page 9 ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Phone numbers and resources Page 10

July Town Hall minutes

Pfc. Tracy Trevino, with the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, and his 3year-old daughter, Malory, ride a horse from the 1st Cavalry Division Horse Detachment at Fort Hood, Texas, Aug. 2 as a part of a wish granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The ride around the detachment’s training area followed a private mounted cavalry demonstration put on for her and her family. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Robert Strain, 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs)

1st Cavalry Division Rear Detachment Commanding Officer Rear Detachment Command Sgt. Maj.

Col. Larry Phelps
Public Affairs Officer

Contact The Home Front at (254) 287-9400, DSN 737-9400 or email robert.j.strain@us.army.mil. Editor, The Home Front The Home Front is an authorized publication for members of the U.S. Army. Contents of The Home Front are not necessarily official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government, Department of Defense, Department of the Army or the 1st Cavalry Division. All editorial content of The Home Front is prepared, edited, provided and approved by the 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs Office.

Sgt. Maj. William Wallace Lt. Col. Scott Bleichwehl

Sgt. Robert J. Strain Maj. Randall Baucom
Contributing Writers

Rear Detachment Public Affairs NCOIC

Sgt. Robert J. Strain

August 2007

Coming home
3 OCT – 14 NOV


1st Cavalry Division Estimated Redeployment Timeline
Created: Monday, 13 August 07

1ST Cavalry Division Windows
15 DEC – 26 JAN


Silver Eagles Broncos

14 SEP – 26 JAN

12 NOV – 24 DEC


Grey Wolf
16 DEC – 27 JAN


Black Jack

Warriors Long Knife Maverick

29 NOV – 20 JAN

21 NOV – 2 JAN

28 NOV – 9 JAN

Iron Horse

25 DEC – 5 FEB


America’s First Team America’

The 1st Cavalry Division wishes a safe and fun school year to all the First Team kids! Watch your First Team events Live!
You can now watch the 1st Cavalry Division Town Hall and Purple Heart / Volunteer of the Month Ceremonies live from wherever you have internet access.

on the day of the event!

Just visit

August 2007

home FronT newS


First Team family keeps busy with household projects
Story and Photos by Sgt. Robert J. Strain 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs
Normally, home improvement projects are taking care of by Dad. For one 1st Cavalry Division Family, these projects are being taking care of for Dad – who is currently deployed to Iraq with the First Team. Oklahoma City native Kathy Vela and her two kids have tackled home improvement projects for two deployments, and plan to continue if there are more deployments in store for Command Sgt. Maj. Glen Vela, the senior noncommissioned officer for the 1st Air Cavalry Brigade’s 615th Aviation Support Battalion. The first deployment, and project, came in 2003, when he was deployed with the 4th Infantry Division. According to Kathy, their home in Copperas Cove, Texas, had essentially no backyard, just a steep slope to the back of the lot, which became very slippery and muddy when it rained. “It was such a slant and there was no grass or anything, you couldn’t do anything with it. “I knew Glen didn’t like it from the beginning, that’s the reason he didn’t want to buy this house,” she said. Over the course of the deployment, the backyard was built up with dirt and held in by railroad ties, until it was more like large steps. Kathy said the hardest part of the project was keeping it all a secret from her husband. “We tried really hard,” she said. “It was a little hard, because [the kids] wanted to tell him.” The kids, Mindy, 15, and Andy, 11, wanted to tell their Dad about the work because they were so excited about the project. “We were excited to see him, and what he would think,” Andy said. Kathy explained that although keeping a secret worked out the first time, they weren’t even going to try the second time around, which came in Oct. of 2006, when Vela deployed with

Mindy Vela, 15, and Andy Vela, 11, tear up the linoleum flooring in the kitchen of their Copperas Cove home Aug. 8. The Velas take on a different home improvement project every time dad, Command Sgt. Maj. Glen Vela, the senior noncommissioned officer for the 615th Aviation Support Battalion, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, deploys.

Mindy Vela, 15, and Andy Vela, 11, tear up the linoleum flooring in the kitchen of their Copperas Cove home Aug. 8.

the 1st Cavalry Division. This time, they decided before he left that they needed to do something around the house to occupy their time and keep them busy until he returned, Kathy said. After completing many smaller projects, including renovating an upstairs bathroom and several closets, the Velas moved onto a bigger project – the floor. Their plan is to remove the linoleum floor in the kitchen and carpeting in the dining room, replacing it with vinyl tiles, she explained. “We were tired of it,” Mindy said. “We were like, ‘Man, this looks really ugly!’” They have been ripping up the

current floor since the beginning of July, but have been pacing themselves in order to make the project last longer. “I want to finish before Halloween, for sure,” Kathy said, but she hopes to have it finished by the end of September. What started as a backyard project several years ago has evolved into almost a tradition for this First Team family. Kathy said they are unsure what the next project might be if there is another deployment in store, but they plan to continue doing something to fill their time until Dad comes home. “We’ll have to wait and see,” Kathy said. “We have to finish this one first.”

August 2007

home FronT newS


First Team teen takes on ‘hair raising’ charity event
Story and Photos by Sgt. Robert J. Strain 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs
The efforts of one 1st Cavalry Division family member paid off Aug. 11 in the form of hair – locks and locks of it. Rebeka Wiggins, a First Team teen from Greenville, Texas, whose father Sgt. 1st Class Erik Wiggins, with Company A, 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, is deployed with the First Team, organized an event at the Killeen College of Cosmetology in which people from the local area would be able to come get their hair cut and donate it to charity. But it didn’t start out like this, Wiggins and her mom, Lori Wiggins, had just wanted to cut their hair. It was Rebeka’s grandmother who suggested that they donate their hair to a charity, and after a little research they chose Wigs for Kids. The charity, Wigs for Kids, is a non-profit organization that has been helping children who suffer from hair loss for more than 25 years, including those children who are going through chemotherapy. Wiggins, who has family members who are undergoing chemotherapy, said she wanted to make sure her hair went to those that are going through the same thing as her family. What started out as a small event exploded by mentioning it one person, Lori said. Wiggins shared her plan with her Girl Scout troop leader, who told her that she could get a patch from Wigs for Kids for her donation and organizing an event for others to donate. “I feel great about helping others,” Wiggins said. “I wanted others to be able to donate also.” Several of the volunteers there to donate hair were members of Wiggins’ Girl Scout troop, including 13-yearold Jerrica Nolt. Nolt said she her hair was getting too long and she wanted to get it cut. “I just wanted my hair cut and to help out kids who can’t grow their own hair,” Nolt said. Nolt donated 15 inches of hair, which gets pulled into a ponytail and cut off. After the ponytail is cut off, the volunteer gets their remaining hair styled however they like by the students at the college. “I think it’s really cool – what they’re doing,” said Carmen Sepulveda, a student who cut Nolt’s hair. The event brought out a total of 7 people from the community with more than 12 inches of hair to donate and gathered more than 100 total inches of hair. Wiggins is planning on organizing another similar event next year, once her hair grows long enough again.

Carmen Sepulveda, a student at the Killeen College of Cosmetology, cuts off Jerrica Nolt’s 15-inch ponytail Aug. 11 during a drive by a 1st Cavalry Division teen to raise hair for a charity that gives wigs to chemotherapy patients. By the drive’s end, more than 100 inches of hair had been donated.

Family FirST ‘Cold Steel’ has day in the park
August 2007 Story and Photos by Sgt. Robert J. Strain 1st Cav. Div. Public Affairs
Soldiers and family members from the 615th Aviation Support Battalion, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division gathered together Aug. 12 at Killeen’s Long Branch park for a backto-school bash. The gathering was meant to be a way for the battalion’s families to get together and get out of the house before school started back up and units started returning from Iraq, said Oklahoma City native Kathy Vela, who coordinated the event. She explained that there had been a long time since the last battalion family event, and she wanted to do something to bring everyone back together before they got busy. “Once school starts, people get busy - between sports, band and other after school activities,” Vela said. Besides the playground equipment 

at the park, the battalion provided a inflatable house for the kids to bounce around in and hot dogs cooked by the Hewitt, Texas, local Veterans of Foreign Wars. The VFW also provided school supplies, including notebooks, pencils, glue, and markers, to put in 100 backpacks, which were then given to the kids at the party, Vela said. Also donated by the VFW were six bicycles, which were given away to kids at the bash. Brandon Garcia, 8, enjoyed the day, especially the hot dogs, but the highlight of the day for Garcia was winning a 15-speed mountain bike, he said. He said it was something he didn’t expect when he came out to the bash, and that he also liked the backpack full of supplies. Harry Munn, the commander of VFW Post 6008 and native of Hewitt, Texas, said he enjoys doing things like this with not only the Soldiers, but their families too. “It’s what the VFW does,” Munn said. “When the Soldier goes to war, the family goes with them.” Munn said that the VFW plans on doing more events for the Soldiers when they return from Iraq later this year and early next year. “Being here when the Soldiers come home – it’s very gratifying to be able to serve our country in this way, to serve our Soldiers and their families,” Munn said.

LEFT: Capt. Brent Bosson, the rear detachment commander for the 615th Aviation Support Battalion, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, hands a backpack filled with school supplies to 4-year-old Julianna Garcia at the battalion’s back to school bash Aug. 12 in Killeen’s Long Branch park. More than 60 kids turned out for an afternoon of food and fun in the park.

August 2007

Baghdad BrieF


Coalition Soldiers rescue Iraqi boy from well
Story by Maj. Randall Baucom 1st BCT Public Affairs
CAMP TAJI, Iraq – Multi-National Division – Baghdad Soldiers rescued a 2-year-old Iraqi boy from a dry well in which he fell Aug. 9. Soldiers with Company B, 2nd Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division responded to the pleas for assistance from the father of a 2-year-old boy who had fallen into a dry well near the family’s residence. The company commander, Capt. David Powell of Newport Beach, Calif., was about to begin a scheduled security patrol when the boy’s father approached the gate of his Coalition outpost on foot. Using an interpreter, Capt. Powell quickly assessed the situation and sent the patrol to assist with the recovery of the child. The father directed the Soldiers to the location of the well and Capt. Powell used his flashlight to find the child at the bottom. “I could see that the baby had fallen some 25 feet and was lying at the bottom of the well,” Powell said. “He appeared to be breathing, but would not answer to our calls.”

Capt. David Powell from Newport Beach, Calif., holds the 2-year-old Iraqi boy the day after he rescued him. The boy fell into a dry well Aug. 9.

Staff Sgt. Raul Torres (left), from San Ventio, Texas, and Capt. David Powell from Newport Beach, Calif., smile while standing at the bottom of the rescue shaft after recovering a 2-year-old Iraqi boy who had fallen into an adjacent dry well shaft. After five hours of digging, the boy was returned to his parents unharmed Aug. 9.

Using a back hoe from the outpost, the patrol began a slow and meticulous process of digging a parallel shaft to the dry well, then tunneling to the well horizontally, being careful not to cause the well to cave in. “The back hoe made quick work of the rescue shaft just to the south of the well. Then the real digging began,” said Powell. Because of the instability of soil, a fear of a cave-in and desire to not risk any of his Soldiers, Captain Powell selected himself and Staff Sgt. Roul Torres, a native of San Venito, Texas, to dig the horizontal shaft to the well. Using an entrenching tool, a flat-head screwdriver, rebar and other primitive farming tools, Capt. Powell and Staff Sgt. Torres went to work. After several hours of digging, a faint crying was heard from the boy. “He sounded scared, but OK,” said Powell. “I don’t think I have ever heard a more beautiful sound.” After five hours of digging the horizontal shaft reached the well. The well was basin shaped at the bottom, making the boy very difficult to locate. After several attempts to reach for the boy, Capt. Powell was able to pull the boy to safety. Coalition medics on the scene quickly assessed the boy, finding no serious injuries. The child was then returned to his mother and father, who were thankful for the assistance. The patrol then filled in the hole they dug, and returned to their outpost. The following day, Capt. Powell visited the family’s residence with a medic to ensure the child was not having any medical issues from the fall. The medic determined the child was in perfect health. “In my 18-years in the Army,” Powell said, “this is, by far, the greatest thing I have ever done.”

August 2007

Coming Up QUiCk


“Take Me Out to the Ballgame”
When: Sunday, 2 September 07 Time: 1:00 PM – 10:00 PM Where: Meet in the 1CD HQ Main (North) Foyer Who: Any 1st CAV tween (ages 9-12) RSVP to Carol: 1st 100 tweens…first come, first serve…call 291-9602 or email carol.r.livengood@hood.army.mil before 1:00 PM on 8/29/07 to reserve your spot

Parents: There will be 15 trustworthy chaperones for this event, lead by COL Phelps and Mrs. Livengood

August 2007

Town hall


July’s Town Hall Meeting minutes
From Open Forum with Col. Larry Phelps First Team Rear Detachment Commander
Can we plan trip for the young kids? Possibly a trip to the Waco Zoo? Yes, details to follow Is there A/C at FOB Prosperity? For those that live in the trailers, the answer is YES For those living in buildings, we owe you an answer When will official orders be passed out? There will be no new orders Current orders are open ended and cover the entire deployment, including the extension period If you are having a specific problem with a specific creditor, let us know and we will draft a specific memorandum to address the issue What is being done for Soldiers who did not get 18 days R&R? There is a date the policy went in to effect Those who have not taken leave will get the 18 days No one is coming home for the extra 3 days, they will not be grandfathered With the new Troop surge and the extension, how will the effect the extension affect the troops? Are we guaranteed the 15 months without another extension? Mission will drive everything, as you already know There are no guarantees The answer provided by BG Campbell to a similar question earlier is right on target There are no webcams for Soldiers at LSA Anaconda unless they choose to use their own and pay an outrageous amount for internet service. Why is this? We owe a better answer, but LSA Anaconda is a huge base of operation w/a lot of technology Where can my spouse apply for a passport on Taji? This is a tough one, but we will get an answer Will there be a family day upon return during RIT? Yes Can Rear D have 18 days leave now that the policy has changed down range? I’ll think about it

Three-year-old Malory Trevino and her father, Pfc. Tracy Trevino, a Soldier with the Howitzer Battery, 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, ride Derail around the 1st Cavalry Division’s Horse Detachment training area at Fort Hood, Texas Aug. 2 as a part of her wish. Malory was diagnosed with leukemia last year and will be headed to Walt Disney World in the near future as the second part of her wish granted by the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

August 2007

helpFUl inFo
287-8657 288-5003 287-AFAP 286-6600 287-VOLS 287-CARE 287-CITY 288-2089 287-6070 286-6774 288-7570 288-2862 288-5155 287-4ACS 287-4471 630-6218 630-6240 383-2571 383-3684 383-1631 288-2794 287-2286 618-7443 288-2863 287-4471 618-7584 286-6774 702-4953


Army Community ServiCe ContACtS
ACS Volunteer Program Army Emergency Relief (AER) Army Family Action Plan (AFAP) Army Family Team Building (AFTB) Army Volunteer Corps Child & Spouse Abuse 24/7 Hotline Consumer Affairs Office Employment Readiness Branch (ERB) Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) Family Advocacy Program (FAP) Family Assistance Center (FAC) Financial Management Classes FRG/RDO Classes Information, Referral & Outreach (IRO) If you do not know who to call Lending Closet Military Family Life Consultants (MFLC)

FAmily reAdineSS ContACtS
1st Cav FRG Assistants
Division Team Leader
254-291-902 Carol Livengood

Wendy Edwards

1st “Ironhorse” Brigade

Laurie Siegel

2nd “Black Jack” Brigade

Lori Carpeneter

3rd “Grey Wolf” Brigade

Mobilization & Deployment New Parent Support Program (NPSP) Parenting Classes Relationship Enrichment Program (REP) Relocation Readiness Program Stress/Anger/Conflict Management Classes Victim Advocate Crisis Line

Jenny O’Rourke

1st Air Cavalry Brigade

Charles Lyons

15th Sustainment Brigade