Published: March 17, 2009
Keystone Soldiers Get Out on Patrol
By Sgt. Doug Roles
56th SBCT PAO
Sgt. Oshea Washington (kneeling, right) of Easton, Pa., a Soldier with Company C, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, takes up a position at the corner of a building to pull security. The Soldiers conducted a patrol in Al-Faris, southwest of Tarmiyah. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Doug Roles, 56th SBCT, 28th Inf. Div., MND-B)
BAGHDAD - Soldiers from Company C, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, conducted a presence patrol in the Al-Faris area, southwest of Tarmiyah.
"We were basically patrolling the area, showing our presence, letting the people in that neighborhood know we're there to protect them," said Sgt. 1st Class James Mergott, a platoon sergeant from Ridley, Pa.
Sgt. 1st Class James Mergott, of Ridley, Pa., a platoon sergeant with Company C, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, gestures to other Soldiers after dismounting his Stryker vehicle near an Iraqi Army traffic checkpoint, south of Tarmiyah. Mergott and Soldiers from Company C were on their way to patrol in the village of Al-Faris when they dismounted to talk to Iraqi Army Soldiers. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Doug Roles, 56th SBCT, 28th Inf. Div., MND-B)
"From my perspective, I thought the patrol went well. I'm a vehicle commander, so I was in the vehicle providing over watch and could see what was taking place."
Prior to the patrol, Soldiers stopped by traffic control points manned by their Iraqi Army counterparts. Company C Soldiers and Iraqi Army soldiers routinely patrol through the village, providing security for residents and giving Soldiers the opportunity to learn about resident's concerns. Staff Sgt. Michael Brown, of Exeter, Pa., said the Al-Faris residents have spoken to patrolling Soldiers about how conditions have improved.
Sgt. 1st Class James Mergott, of Ridley, Pa., a platoon sergeant with Company C, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, reviews a manning roster in the rear of a Stryker vehicle at Joint Security Station Tarmiyah prior to a patrol. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jacob Smith)
"We did a presence patrol in the neighborhood to talk to some of the local nationals, to see what they need overall in the neighborhood," Brown said. "Each time we're there, it's just getting better."
Brown said many of the Al-Faris residents had relocated to the area from Baghdad, because of previous insurgent activity there. Brown said the Al-Faris residents who had relocated want only to start over and live quietly.
Spc. John Kohr (left) of Port Clinton, Pa., pulls security while 1st Lt. Steven Zahuranec of Plymouth Meeting, Pa., talks to other elements participating in a patrol in Al-Faris, southwest of Tarmiyah. The Soldiers are from Company C, 1st Battalion, 111th Infantry Regiment, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Doug Roles, 56th SBCT, 28th Inf. Div., MND-B)
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