Red Bulls patrol area around COP Najil

LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army Capt. Jason Merchant, the company commander of Company A, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry Regiment, Task Force Ironman from Dysart, Iowa, hands out cards Dec. (click for more)

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LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan - U.S. Army 2nd Lt. Taylor Gingrich, an infantry officer from Cedar Falls, Iowa, with Task Force Ironman, draws a smile from an Afghan boy as Gingrich (click for more)

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French forces support Afghan troops in Kapisa

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KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Army Sgt. Harley Herron of West View, Ky., food service specialist for Headquarters Support Company, 101st Airborne Division, pours sauce over sweet potatoes Nov. 24 while preparing a Thanksgiving celebration for U.S. personnel. Personnel kept their spirits up even though many of them are more than 6,000 miles away from home. Members of Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team make up a large portion of the U.S. personnel at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team / released)KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – The spirit of Thanksgiving was strong at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier Nov. 24 as members of Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team celebrated more than 6,000 miles away from home, friends and family.

In celebration of the holiday, all U.S. service members and civilians here at FOB Morales-Frazier gathered for a Thanksgiving feast complete with most traditional fixings, seasonal piano music and candlelit tables.

“It was nice just being able to have everyone together... to relax, talk and enjoy the good food,” said U.S. Army Spc. Charllee Sanchez, Kapisa PRT security force member and a native of Springfield, Mass.

With more than 100 U.S. service members and civilians in attendance, coordinating this holiday meal proved to be a little tricky since supplies can be hard to come by in this type of deployed environment.  

“I wanted this holiday to be as similar to home as possible, so we held the dinner in a room large enough for the whole group to sit and eat together, as one family,” said U.S. Army 1st Lt. Lorena Vega, Kapisa PRT logistics officer and Florida, Puerto Rico, native.

“I come from a large family, so I’m used to helping prepare large get-togethers like this for the holidays; but I must admit this was a new record for me,” Vega said. “This event took weeks of pre-planning.”

Coordinating a location large enough for the entire group, gathering enough tables and chairs to seat everyone simultaneously, and finding small things like candles and tablecloths proved to be much more difficult here in Afghanistan, she explained.

“In the end, everything came together beautifully, though,” she continued. “It was truly a group effort. There were many logistical hurdles along the way, but everyone here made an effort to lend a helping hand and I really appreciate them all.”
During the gathering, many service members expressed gratitude for the opportunity to share such a wonderful Thanksgiving meal with their comrades.

“It’s never the same when you’re away from your family, but having a lot of friends here makes it better,” said U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Gilberto Rodriguez, Kapisa PRT communications specialist and LaBelle, Fla., native.

When asked what he liked best about the holiday celebration, U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Chad Harrison, Kapisa PRT security force member from Waltham, Mass., mentioned the laughter and camaraderie shared amongst the crowd.  

“Being here with my comrades was great,” Harrison said. “We have made a lot of memories together and this will definitely be another that we share.”

KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Gilberto Rodriguez of LaBelle, Fla., communications specialist for Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team from eats his Thanksgiving dinner during a celebration for U.S. personnel here Nov. 24. Personnel keep their spirits up even though many of them are more than 6,000 miles away from home. Members of Kapisa PRT make up a large portion of the U.S. personnel at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team / released)KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – French Army Brig. Gen. Jean-Francois Hogard, Task Force Lafayette commanding general, gets turkey during a Thanksgiving celebration for U.S. personnel at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier Nov. 24. Personnel keep their spirits up even though many of them are more than 6,000 miles away from home. Members of Kapisa PRT make up a large portion of the U.S. personnel at FOB Morales-Frazier. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team / released)KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – U.S. Air Force 2nd Lt. Ashley Skillman, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team public affairs officer from Wichita, Kan., records U.S. citizen Eric Jacob, U.S. Agency for International Development representative from Roseburg, Org., as he wishes a Happy Thanksgiving to his friends and family back home before going to a Thanksgiving celebration for U.S. personnel Nov. 24 at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier. Personnel keep their spirits up even though many of them are more than 6,000 miles away from home. Members of Kapisa PRT make up a large portion of the U.S. personnel at FOB Morales-Frazier. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team / released)KAPISA PROVINCE, Afghanistan – Whipped cream is spooned onto apple pie in preparation for a Thanksgiving celebration for U.S. personnel Nov. 24. Members of Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team make up a large portion of the U.S. personnel at Forward Operating Base Morales-Frazier. The mission of Kapisa PRT is to help facilitate the local and national governments of Afghanistan working together to help provide for the development and security needs of the Afghan people. (Photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Brasier, Kapisa Provincial Reconstruction Team / released)

 

    

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