Third Infantry Division Homecoming Delayed - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

05/29/03

Third Infantry Division Homecoming Delayed

We have some disappointing news for Third Infantry Division families. Word had it that some of the soldiers would start coming home in June, but not any more. Word came today from Maj. Gen. Buford Blount that Third ID soldiers won't begin returning until some time in August.

In a letter, the division commander wrote that the soldiers have been doing a tremendous job but the mission is not done yet. He explains that because of continued resistance, the Department of Defense now plans on keeping a larger force in Iraq longer than expected.

"We're very disappointed in this," District 1 Congressman Jack Kingston said. "These are the orders from hell. They're up the Euphrates River. They've fought sandstorms, they've trained, they've stormed Saddam's palace. This is the order from hell. These folks want to come home."

Congressman Kingston says he's put in calls to both Gen. Tommy Franks and to Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, urging them to replace the Third ID with fresh troops.

Reported by: Holly Bristow, hbristow@wtoc.com

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