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'Excited, and a little bit nervous,' 11th Signal Brigade heads to Iraq
Arizona Daily Star ^ | Aaron Mackey

Posted on 10/05/2007 6:46:25 PM PDT by SandRat

SIERRA VISTA — Army Chief Warrant Officer Lisa Stansbury's family has plenty of work to do while she's in Iraq for the next 15 months.

There's the horse to take care of and ride, plenty of homework to finish and weekly letters to write — not to mention building a house.

"We've got to have it done before she gets done," said her husband, Doug, who along with 11-year-old daughter Sarah saw Stansbury off Thursday morning during a departure ceremony for the 11th Signal Brigade.

Stansbury, along with more than 100 other soldiers from the unit, departed from Fort Huachuca's Libby Army Airfield to take over advanced Internet and satellite communications in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

As the post's jazz combo played in a hangar just off the tarmac, Stansbury sat with her daughter and tried to get her to smile, rubbing her back and mixing in plenty of hugs and kisses along with the occasional tickle.

The family is building its home in nearby Whetstone and will use several options to stay in touch.

Stansbury, who helps manage military computer networks, will have a cell phone in Iraq and there will be plenty of e-mail and handwritten letters, too.

"Sarah's going to write me once a week," Stansbury said. The unit will replace soldiers from the 3rd Signal Brigade who are serving in various locations in the region.

Members will operate and maintain a joint coalition computer, communications, command and control network in addition to other tasks such as providing Internet communications services, computer help-desk assistance, satellite transmissions, phone lines and fiber-optic-cable installation.

Spc. Randy Sims, who got married two weeks ago, said he didn't want to leave his new wife behind.

Sims said he'll call Victorea as much as he can. But that can't replace his being there, he said, especially because they just found out she's pregnant.

"In a way I'm excited and a little bit nervous," he said of the deployment.

There was no tearful goodbye between Sgts. Teresa Shattuck and Arturo Miranda, who are engaged and have a 3-year-old daughter.

The couple deployed together, leaving their daughter, Adyanna, with Shattuck's mother.

The two plan to marry when they return "if she hasn't gotten tired of me by then," Miranda said.

Shattuck and Miranda have been deployed before, like many other members of the unit. For a few soldiers, Thursday marked the fourth time they've been deployed.

During the ceremony, Brig. Gen. Jeff Smith thanked the soldiers for their commitment and said he was humbled to stand before them.

"You represent follow-through," said Smith, deputy commander of the 9th Signal Command. "I am awed by your presence."

For Stansbury, the deployment was long overdue. Soldiers in the unit had heard rumors of leaving for a year, so she's happy to finally be going.

But while she's gone, she knows her family will miss her — especially when it comes to helping build the house, she said jokingly.

Her husband "had to hire four guys to replace me," she said.

View a photo gallery and a video of the deploying Ft. Huachuca soldiers at

● Contact reporter Aaron Mackey at 573-4138 or at

TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; US: Arizona; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: 11thsigbde; excited; godspeed; iraq; nervous
"When you miss me, just sing 'Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star,' " Sgt. Teresa Shattuck told her 3-year-old daughter Adyanna. Adyanna's father also was deploying for 15 months to Iraq.
Photos by Jill Torrance / arizona daily star

Pfc. Bryan Schriner says goodbye to his wife, Pfc. Jara Schriner. She left for Iraq on Thursday; he expects to be deployed in three months.

Iyanna Dillard, 2, waits for her father's plane to take off. More than 100 soldiers from Ft. Huachuca's 11th Signal Brigade deployed Thursday. Jill Torrance / arizona daily star

1 posted on 10/05/2007 6:46:27 PM PDT by SandRat
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