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Monday, 2-Jan-2006 00:00
Commander's Update!
1 January 2006

Warlord Families and Friends,

Happy New Year! The Marines of 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marines rang in the New Year by continuing combat operations. With the world celebrating the turn of a new year, the Marines, Sailors, and families remained vigilant to the continuing operations in Iraq in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM. I include all of you because families bear a great burden themselves in support of the Marine Corps’ mission. While we have been deployed during five months of 2005, you have been at home supporting us and for that we are grateful. The success of the Global War on Terrorism resides, in part, on the support and hard work of the families back home. You too play a part in this fight to rid the world of terrorism and you bear a great burden yourselves. This burden and the importance of solid support from home are largely unrecognized by those outside the military. I want you all to understand that we know and appreciate that you are every bit the patriot as the Marines and Sailors of this magnificent Task Force.

The most anticipated information of any Newsletter during this deployment will invariably be scoop on return dates. I’m going to qualify all information upfront: 1st- Due to Operational Security I can not be very specific. 2nd - All dates are subject to change due to mission requirements.
Please be tolerant and patient with the conditions we must operate under. Obviously we are making the run towards redeployment and excitement will build quickly. I will continue to remain firm that the Marines and Sailors stay focused on the mission at hand. They will not be allowed to waiver or relax until they are on the plane and flying home to ensure their safety and the success of our mission. With that said, I will give you all the information I can. We expect the advance party to arrive the last week in January and the mainbody Mid-February. We will update the 1-800 number as we get closer to the end of the deployment with specific dates of our return. This is always a frustrating time and I can understand the angst this vague information causes. Nevertheless, for reasons of security we cannot provide complete fidelity on arrival dates.

Of critical importance will be the reunion and subsequent leave and liberty period following our return. I want you all to enjoy the reunion and spend time getting to know one another again. There will be a lot of emotion and it will take some time to adjust to each other and family routines. Patience and understanding by Marines, Sailors and family alike, will be critical so that we all can get back to our regular routines. It is nothing to fear but something to be aware of.

Just as critical will be safety during the leave period. I do not consider our mission complete until all Marines, Sailors and families have returned safely from post-deployment leave. A normal reaction will be to make up for lost time of celebration and attempt to cram more activities into a short time span than reasonable or responsible. Please encourage your Warlord not to overdue his travel plans and TAKE THEIR TIME. Vehicles and alcohol will be of major concern to me and I ask all involved, Marines, Sailors, families and friends, to think twice and to look out for one another. It would be tragic to lose a member of the Task Force after he successfully finished seven months of combat operations in Iraq. Other units returning have suffered such tragedy with Marines killed or seriously injured from preventable accidents due to vehicles and alcohol. Take time to adjust, enjoy the reunion period and remember to celebrate wisely and safely.

Our plan is to conduct a block leave after required transition training is complete at CLNC. The leave period is four weeks long. I expect to publish a ten day period in the next Newsletter that is in the center of the leave period. This will allow families to plan vacation trips and look for good travel deals. From experience I know that schedules can change due to unforeseen events. Please wait until dates and events firm up.

Mail should not be sent to Task Force 2/2. We have reached a point when you risk him not receiving the package or mail before our departure. He will still receive mail but it will be processed here in Iraq and forwarded back to Camp Lejeune, greatly extending the total mailing time by probably four to six weeks. The Camp Lejeune mailing addresses for each company are listed on this website.

I’m pleased to announce the arrival of more “Baby Warlords”. All “Baby Warlords” are special and each one is a terrific Blessing. However, yesterday I learned of one birth that has special significance to many of us. Katherine Cathey, the wonderful wife of the late, 2nd Lieutenant James Joseph Cathey, gave birth to James Cathey Jr. on December 22nd 2005. Although, “Cat” never had the opportunity to hold his son we all know James Jr. has an Angel watching over him. The legacy of this brave “Lieutenant of Marines” lives on in James Jr. Katherine, please know you are special to the Warlord family and you are never forgotten. Congratulations also to 2nd Lt Joseph and Tara Seykora with the arrival of their son Thaden Ty Seykora.

In closing, I want to remind all family and friends we will not allow your Warlord to get distracted from his mission. We must remain vigilant and focused on the threat and mission. Although, nothing sounds more enjoyable than our upcoming reunion, we must stay focused and fight complacency until we are safely out of theater. Please reinforce this message when you communicate with him via phone or email. As always, thank you for your tremendous support during our deployment.

I remain Semper Fidelis,

James J Minick

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