By Cliff Radel
The Cincinnati Enquirer
EVANSTON - Fifteen members of Cargo 9 said their goodbyes Wednesday.
Tyler Madden, 10, says goodbye to his mom, Naval Reserve Petty Officer Tanya Madden, who left Wednesday for Kuwait.|
(Michael E. Keating photo)
Fortified by hugs and kisses, the 15 sailors of the Naval Reserve's Cargo Handling Battalion 9 prepared to leave the Naval & Marine Corps Reserve Center in Evanston for duty in Kuwait.
For the next year, the sailors will move equipment from ships to troops fighting in Iraq.
A band played "This Is My Country" and sailors posed for family photos in front of a wall-size flag. Mothers wept. Dads wrapped arms around sons and daughters.
Desert Storm veteran Richard Perkins hugged his 90-year-old mother. The Colerain Township maintenance worker reminded her that she raised him to be a man of his word.
Petty Officer LaDante Gooden left the ground in his dad's arms.
"I'm losing feeling in my legs," joked the Mount Auburn man. "Don't squeeze so hard, I'll be back."
Ten-year-old Tyler Maddin buried his head in his mother's embrace and sobbed. His mom, Tanya Maddin, is leaving her job as a commercial analyst and their Newport home to be a petty officer in Kuwait. As she tried to comfort him, they wore matching fatigues and tear-stained faces.
Fifteen brass players from Anderson High School's marching band serenaded the troops and their families They played as a favor to Lt. Rick Wilson. He's Cargo 9's commanding officer and works with a band alumnus' mom.
When he's not in uniform, Wilson lives in Chardon, Ohio, and works as a bank examiner for the Federal Reserve Bank.
To mark the occasion, he bought roses for his troops and asked them to give them to their sweethearts. He gave one each to his wife, Lisa, and daughters, Caitlyn, 5, and Sarah, 9. Sarah took it upon herself to take tins of cookies from family to family.
Sarah's dad looked at his troops and made a vow:
"They're all coming back."
West-siders still stand by Pete
Concealed carry bill awaits Taft
Concealed carry rules
More stores sold gas-tainted kerosene
Water recedes, cleanup begins
IN THE TRISTATE
Boone County schools chief likes to be prepared
AK Steel to build fence in pollution dispute
Killer to stay in tight security
Warren explores performing arts school
Blue Ash golfers can buy cold one
From the state capitals
Debate over halting killings splits council
Jolivette, Combs may swap
Harmony says sad goodbye to founder
Some want to shut door on retail
New hospital's scope still unclear
Trial gives look into drug life
Reservists off to Kuwait
Husband, 85, charged in slaying
In the schools
No jail in attack on local guide dog
Around the Tristate
Bronson: Visions of sugar plums? Not exactly
Lab buyout could result in moving it to Boone County
Senior citizens, students mingle
Thomas Rumpke ran family business
Coast Guard studying accident
Panel looks for good ideas
Kimmich bows out of county's top job
D.C. group airing ads touting Kerr