We have much to be grateful for this Thanksgiving week. But little more so than having most of our Fort Stewart-Hunter soldiers safely back home. The most recent returnees in large number, the Third I.D.'s Combat Aviation Brigade, stationed at Hunter, led by Colonel Don Galli and Command Sergeant Major Rick Stidley, now home from the fight in Afghanistan. While that is terrific news for our area, do remember that Stewart's 4th Brigade Combat Team is still deployed, and will be so, on into 2011, while members of the Georgia Guard's 165th Airlift Wing will begin deploying again shortly. Do also remember that our special operations soldiers at Hunter, while they deploy for shorter durations, repeatedly do so at heightened-tempo. Sadly, our courageous special operators have suffered losses during their continuous overseas efforts on behalf of our nation. We must not let their heroics and sacrifice be forgotten. Remember, always, that our liberty is not a given. The cost of preserving it remains extremely high.
The brave men and women who serve, in all five branches, are truly America's finest. As you enjoy being together with family this week, please pause to think of those who cannot be, as they continue the global fight against vicious evil, giving their all to keep us secure and free.