ASHWAUBENON - Forty-seven Marine Corps reservists left Austin Straubel Airportfor duty Tuesday morning , to serve as military police and provideconvoy security in Afghanistan. It's not clear how longthey'll be serving overseas.
“There's a million emotions in one, too many topinpoint,” said Sgt. Pete Vargo of Marinette.
“There’s a lot of emotions,” said LCpl. CoreyGardner of Oshkosh. “My wife is eight months pregnant, soI’m going to be missing the birth maybe. So I feel sad but atthe same time I signed the contract. I’m going to do whatI’m supposed to do.”
“ Obviously it's sad,” said Gardner’s wife,Hannah. “I'm going to miss him a lot, but we'll get throughit.”
“Just kind of sad that I’m leaving everybody for thefirst time,” said LCpl. Ashley Willes of Green Bay.“It’s going to be a while.”
“This is now his 2nd time going through this,” saidSgt. Vargo of his son, Cole. “The first time, he didn't knowwhat was going on, and this time, he understands I have to go awayand do my job. He doesn't know what that really entails, but hejust knows I'll be home before he knows it.”
The Marines tell FOX 11 it's not clear when they'll arrive backat Austin Straubel, but while they're gone, they say they know thesupport of people back home with get them through.
“It means everything,” said Sgt. Vargo.“They're the ones that support you through everything on thedeployment. The ones that send you mail, packages. They're the onesthat forward your phone calls. They're the ones you look forward togoing home to so they're the ones you do it for."
It's a full range of emotions, especially for Dick Willes ofLittle Chute, who spent 21 years in the Corps and is saying goodbyeto his daughter, the Marine.
Willes said he’s “unbelievably proud” of hisdaughter.
“It’s hard to see her go,” he said. “Nowthe shoe’s on the other foot, and I’m staying home andshe’s departing.”
FOX 11's Alison Struve was live at the airport as the Marinesprepared to leave Wisconsin.
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