21st troops home in time for holidays

Story and photo by Brittany Jones 21st Theater Sustainment Command Public Affairs

Col. Thomas Seifert, 1st Human Resource Support Center director (left), congratulates Chief Warrant Officer Vance Frazier II for being awarded Warrior of the Week while deployed for nine months in Qatar Dec. 8

After a nine-month deployment to Qatar, the troops of 21st Theater Sustainment Command’s 1st Human Resource Support Center are finally home.

On Dec. 8, the returning 31 troops were greeted by family and friends at the Ramstein Passenger Terminal, where their welcome home ceremony took place.

The 1st HRSC deployed to Qatar in March 2016 in support of the Atlantic Resolve mission.

Among the many guests who attended the ceremony were Chaplain (Capt.) Pawel Zemczak, 21st TSC, with the ceremony’s invocation; Col. Gregory Bunn, 21st TSC, as the honorary guest speaker; and Col. Thomas Seifert, 1st HRSC director, sharing the deployment’s accomplishment.

The accomplishments highlighted during the ceremony included 16 promoted troops, ranging from major to specialist. The unit was also able to sustain and operate a 24-hour Casualty Assistance Center where their mission was to provide timely and accurate professional service for the next of kin of critically injured, ill or deceased Soldiers.

“I am happy to report that our unit returned home with zero casualties,” Seifert expressed.

The unit also was responsible for personnel accountability for more than 70 thousand personnel within their location.

Though unable to attend the ceremony, Maj. Gen. Duane A. Gamble, 21st TSC commanding general, and Command Sgt. Maj. Alberto Delgado provided a prerecorded welcome home video to the troops and their families.

“I know you all understand the meaning of hardship, but times like this remind me of the selfless sacrifice of your families. They were essential to the completion of your mission. They served as the backbone while you were gone,” Gamble shared.

The celebration concluded with a ceremonial cake cutting and the returning Soldiers finally being able to embrace their families.

A tearful reunion for many of the family members, Chief Warrant Officer Jamie Suttor, one of the returning Soldiers, shared how the highlight of the day was finally being able to see her husband and kids.

“It feels amazing, especially since I missed Thanksgiving and my birthday was last week. We are just going to roll it up in one and have a big celebration,” Suttor shared.