Chambersburg VFW Post Adopts National Guard Unit

CHAMBERSBURGAfter raising more than $10,500 for the local Pennsylvania National Guard unit, the Charles Nitterhouse Post 1599 Veterans of Foreign Wars, Chambersburg, has officially adopted the unit.  VFW Commander Chuck Lucas said Wednesday that he has received a certificate for the adoption that makes the relationship official. 

"This is virgin territory for us," he said. "We've never done anything like this. It will be an interesting year. We're going to frame it and hang it up in the post." 

Chambersburg's Troop C 2nd Squadron 104th Cavalry, the unit adopted, is currently in Fort Dix, N.J. They will leave for Kuwait next week, where they will spend two weeks before going to Iraq, according to the Public Affairs Office in Fort Indiantown Gap. 

They are scheduled to serve in Iraq until September this year. 

"We want to thank the public for their continued support," Lucas said. "The response has been great. There have been a lot of thank yous and a lot of tears." 

Back in December, the VFW began raising money to help bring the soldiers home for Christmas. They had traveled to Fort Dix after three months of training in Camp Shelby, Miss., and Fort Polk, La. 

Wolf Bus Lines contributed two buses to transport them from Fort Dix to Waynesboro. The VFW, with the support of the community, covered the fuel cost. 

At the end of a 10-day holiday vacation, the soldiers were treated to a special deployment dinner hosted by the VFW in Waynesboro with the support of Chambersburg's VFW, Kline's Grocery, Domino's Pizza, and other service organizations. 
Lucas said Wednesday that financial support has come from church groups, veterans groups, individuals, the Eagles Club Inc. and from all over. 

"It's hard to predict what will happen," he said. "As time passes, we will see what they ask for. We're ready for them. We will set money aside for their return." 

Lucas said he is in touch with the Family Readiness Group, through which he will arrange to send care packages and phone cards and other items to the soldiers. The VFW will stand ready to assist the soldiers and their families with whatever they need, he said. 

Hear the interview with Chuck Lucas on VFW's The National Defense!


Local soldiers leave next week for Kuwait, Iraq 

Chambersburg's Troop C 2nd Squadron 104th Cavalry will leave next week, possibly on Monday, for Kuwait. A total of 88 soldiers from the unit have been deployed. 

The soldiers will spend about two weeks in Kuwait before moving to Iraq, according to the Public Affairs Office in Fort Indiantown Gap. They are scheduled to return home in September this year. 

The local unit is part of the 56th Stryker Brigade. It is participating in the statewide deployment that includes 4,000 members of the Pennsylvania National Guard. 

Waynesboro's B Battery, 1st Battalion, 108th Field Artillery, is part of the same deployment. 

What you can do 

Charles Nitterhouse Post 1599 Veterans of Foreign Wars has created an account through Orrstown Bank. Donations will be accepted at any branch. Funds will be used to purchase phone cards and to send packages, and help meet other needs of the soldiers and their families. Additional information on the VFW's support of the troops is available by calling Chuck Lucas at 264-2088; or the VFW at 264-9845.