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May 6, 2014 at 2:41pm

2014 U.S. Army "Soldier Show" arrives at Joint Base Lewis-McChord Sept. 8

A scene from the finale of the U.S. Army “Soldier Show” 2014 Stand Strong opening performance April 18 at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston. Photo credit: Tim Hipps

The 2014 U.S. Army Soldier Show tour schedule has been released. From a poem scratched by a prisoner on the back of an envelope during the War of 1812 to troops smart-phoning home from Baghdad, the 2014 U.S. Army Soldier Show brings the enduring story of how soldiers and their families "Stand Strong" to Joint Base Lewis-McChord at 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 8.

"The show tells the Army story - via music, song and dance - by showcasing those things that instill strength and character in our soldiers and their families, inspiring them to exemplify Army values and take care of themselves and each other," said Lt. Gen. David Halverson, commander of the U.S. Army Installation Management Command, the headquarters element for Army Entertainment and the Soldier Show, in a news release.

According to a released statement, the show weaves physical readiness training, the Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention program, sponsorship, ceremonial drill and even the loss of a soldier and suicide prevention into the production.

Included in the cast of singers and dancers is Pfc. Kiari Mhoon of Joint Base Lewis-McChord. As you may remember, Mhoon represented JBLM during last year's Operation Rising Star competition.

May 6, 2014 at 8:03am

Tuesday Morning Joe: JBLM SecArmy Awards, House defense budget, Iranian threat, Super Army soldier, cruising with Wes Anderson ...

Bridge Company, 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group fires an M-32 Multiple Launcher during a coffee training exercise aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C. Original photo by Lance Cpl. Sullivan Laramie


Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier, civilian earn 2014 Secretary of the Army Awards.

House lawmakers released a $521 billion blueprint for the 2015 defense budget that rejects most of the Pentagon's cost-saving proposals.

The U.S. House Armed Services Committee wants to shift billions of dollars from things such as service contracts and museums to Pentagon weapon programs.

House Bill calls for $100 million slash to the annual commissary operating budget, which is two-thirds, over three years.

Iran will target American aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf should a war between the two countries ever break out.

The chairman of the U.S. House Armed Services Committee has drafted legislation that would require the Defense Department to re-write a major military strategy review that was sent to Congress in March.

U.S. signs new lease to keep strategic military installation in the Horn of Africa.

Pentagon pressured to show progress on assaults.

Report: LAX control center's computers crashed while tracking U-2 - the plane, not the band.

The American Legion is demanding the immediate resignation of Veteran Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki and two other top VA leaders.

King Stallion: Newest Marine helicopter gets a royal rollout.

In July, the U.S. Army will make its first big decision on how to proceed with the ambitious, decades-long developmental project to replace up to 4,000 Apache and Black Hawk helicopters by the mid-2030s.

DARPA's Warrior Web project may provide super-human enhancements.

A small study that has shown results using the drug MDMA and conventional therapy to treat PTSD could be of significant value.

Cool: A video that clearly explains the dimensions of the Moon in relation to other things.

It's hard to believe these paintings are not 3D images.

Preview Arcade Fire's new video which stars Andrew Garfield.

Weird:Vampire Weekend's Ezra Koenig sings the theme for a new Seinfeld-themed video game.

Take a cruise with Wes Anderson, Jason Schwartzman and Tilda Swinton.

Finally: Weird sketches they cut from SNL.

LINK: Original photo by Lance Cpl. Sullivan Laramie

May 5, 2014 at 1:05pm

JBLM: UFC fighters reveal best way to get in shape

Rich Franklin, left and Mike Dolce discuss fitness at Joint Base Lewis McChord, May 2. Photo credit: Gail Wood

So, you've gained weight and you want to get in better shape.

Well, Mike Dolce and Rich Franklin, two famous names in the Ultimate Fighting Championship world, will tell you the remedy for getting in shape, for cutting weight and gaining muscle, isn't found in just going to the gym and working out. It's also about eating right.

Dolce, a MMA coach for over a decade with the UFC, and Franklin, a former three-time UFC world champ, talked Saturday at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, sharing insights to becoming a better you.

"It's not just about what you do in the gym," Franklin said. "But it's also about the food you put into your body."


May 2, 2014 at 10:03am

2-2 SBCT headed to National Training Center this summer

Soldiers with Company C, 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 2-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division secure an avenue of approach during platoon urban-operations training. Courtesy photo

1st Lt. Zachary Simons from the 2-2 SBCT files this report:

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - The 2-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division is slated to deploy to the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif., later this summer, where it will certify as a globally-available and regionally-aligned combat brigade.

The NTC is one of the nation's premier training facilities, and to prepare, the Lancers sent senior leadership from the brigade down to the subordinate companies to a Leader Training Program in Fort Irwin, April 14 - 23.

However, training doesn't stop when leaders are away.

"First Lt. [Henry] Hart has performed very well multiple times with minimal guidance and oversight. He is a very strong leader that shows great potential and understanding of combined arms maneuver," said Capt. Justin Shine, commander of Company C, 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 2-2 SBCT, 7th ID.

Hart, a Philadelphia native, is a mobile gun system platoon leader with C Company, 1-17 Infantry, and during LTP, he assumed command.

During Hart's time in command, the company conducted urban operations training April 14-18.

"The Platoon Leaders showed great initiative and discipline during my absence. They have taken ownership and have worked with their NCOs to develop great teams," said Shine.

Hart is slated to be promoted to captain Friday, May 2.

April 30, 2014 at 11:37am

JBLM's 787th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Company headed to Afghanistan

This just in from the 7th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office:

Approximately 50 Soldiers from the 787th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Company, 3rd EOD Battalion, 555th Engineer Brigade, 7th Infantry Division, will case the unit colors Thurs., May 1, at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., in preparation for their deployment to Afghanistan.

The ceremony is a military tradition officially marking a unit deployment or relocation. Once the 787th EOD Co. arrives at its final destination in Afghanistan, the colors will be uncased, marking the completion of the unit relocation.

April 28, 2014 at 1:09pm

Words & Photos: Seattle Mariners 13th annual Salute to Armed Forces

Lt. Gen. Stephen Lanza received a commemorative plaque by the Seattle Mariners in appreciation for the service of the U.S. Army. Members from all six branches received a plaque. Photo credit: Gary Lott

The Seattle Mariners professional baseball team hosted its 13th annual Salute to Armed Forces event April 26 during a game against the Texas Rangers at Safeco Field.

The festivities kicked off an hour prior to the game, with a special pre-game program that honored U.S. Armed Forces, veterans and military service supporting organizations.

"We feel strongly that it is appropriate and important to pay tribute to the men and women who serve our country in the military," said Seattle Mariners Director of Public Information Rebecca Hale.  "The biggest change over the years is how inclusive it has become to all the branches of the military, as well as veterans and disabled veterans groups now being represented. Our goal is to be as inclusive as we can be and to pay tribute to as many individuals and organizations as we can."

A member from each branch of the military - Army Staff Sgt. Rodney Greenway; Marine Corps Sgt. Ariel Hargave; Navy Master at Arms 1st Class Joseph Reyes; Air Force Reserve Maj. Marc Miller; Coast Guard Boatswain's Mate 1st Class Jason Gale; and Washington National Guard Staff Sgt. Jason Fox - lined up along the baseline prior to the game to throw out the ceremonial first pitch.

"It feels pretty good right now, knowing that I will be throwing out a first pitch," said Fox, who works with Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 161st Infantry Regiment.  "It will be a little interesting, trying to throw a pitch in my service uniform, but I think I can get it accomplished."

>>> Col. William Krueger receives a commemorative plaque on behalf of the U.S. Air Force from the Seattle Mariners during the Salute to Armed Forces Night at Safeco on April 26. Photo credit: Gary Lott

>>> Col. Jeremy Horn, Washington National Guard, receives a plaque from the Seattle Mariners. Photo credit: Gary Lott

This was just the beginning of a night dedicated to America's men and women in uniform.

The Mariners also presented officers from each of the U.S. military branches with a  commemorative plaque. Those receiving plaques were: Lt. Gen. Stephen Lanza, U.S. Army; Maj. Gen. David Berger, U.S. Marine Corps; Rear Adm. Bette Bolivar, U.S. Navy; Col. William Krueger, U.S. Air Force; Capt. Matthew Miller, U.S. Coast Guard; and Col. Jeremy Horn, Washington National Guard, on behalf of Brig. Gen. John Tuohy.

The Joint Base Lewis-McChord I Corps Army Band performed the National Anthem, and the colors were presented by the U.S. Joint Service Honor Guard. "Taps" was performed by Army Spc. Raymond Deleon, and during the 7th Inning Stretch, Tech. Sgt. Alfredo "Freddie" Garza of the U.S. Air Force Reserve performed "God Bless America."  

Along with the many military representatives on the field, organizations including the Disabled American Veterans, Paralyzed Veterans of America, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Washington State Guard and Reserve and the USO were introduced during the pregame ceremony.

Organization representatives handled the honorary duties of delivering the lineup cards and game balls.

Fans had the opportunity to support the USO by bidding on silent auction items such as autographed baseballs, game-used items and other memorabilia.

>>> Joint Base Lewis-McChord's Army I Corps Band performs the National Anthem before the Seattle Mariners played the Texas Rangers April 26. Photo credit: Gary Lott

>>> Washington National Guardsmen Staff Sgt. Jason Fox, Bravo Company, 1-161, throws out one of the six ceremonial first pitches at the 13th Annual Mariners Salute to Armed Forces. Photo credit: Gary Lott

"Because we are located in a community that is close to so many military installations, we recognize that there are a lot of fans who are associated with the military," Hale said. Discounted tickets for the game - as low as $11 - were available to members of the military.

 "This year, we have made the discount a blanket 10 percent for all remaining games. So if you're coming from Whidbey, or Bremerton or JBLM, it might be a little easier to come on a Friday night or a weekend than a week night," Hale continued.  "Offering a discount is one small way we can show our appreciation to the men and women, and their families, who have served our nation."

Military personnel receive 10 percent off select main, terrace and view-level seats for all home game tickets on the Mariners 2014 home schedule. Tickets are available at mariners.com/tickets.

"I'm honored and blessed that I'm actually able to come out and do something like this to support my unit," Fox said. "A lot of us have been out on deployments overseas and seen some bad things. It's nice to see that [the Mariners] recognize what we have done, as well as what the service members in the past have done." 

SEE ALSO McChord security forces reservist sings during Mariners' Salture to Services game

April 27, 2014 at 9:22am

Tacoma run honors former JBLM soldier Pat Tillman

Yellow shirts bearing the number 42 ??" Tillman’s football jersey number at Arizona State University ??" bore tribute to Tillman’s influence. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson


It is a Middle English word that sums up yesterday's run honoring Pat Tillman.

A noun, homage means a special honor or respect shown publically.

The signature fundraising event of the Pat Tillman Foundation, the run - Pat's Run - is traditionally held in April at Arizona State University's Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.

A standout scholar and football player at Arizona State University, Tillman played professionally for the Phoenix Cardinals.

After the attacks of 9/11, Tillman remarked to a reporter, "At times like this you stop and think about just how good we have it, what kind of system we live in, and the freedoms we are allowed.  A lot of my family has gone and fought in wars, and I really haven't done a damn thing."

Placing his NFL career on hold, Tillman enlisted in the Army.  He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

On April 22, 2004 Tillman died in Afghanistan due to fratricide.

>>> A participant in Pat's Run, named in honor of Pat Tillman, crosses the finish line at Thea Park.

His friends and family started the Pat Tillman Foundation to carry forward Tillman's legacy of serving to the fullest by providing military veterans and spouses who embody the principle of service the educational tools and means to reach their potential.

"There was nothing negative about him," commented Tyler Renner, an Air Force reservist. "He was living for others, not for himself, and that is what we honor."

Through a partnership with the ASU Alumni Association, a number of "shadow runs" are held in cities across the country.

This year marked the run's 10th anniversary, and more than 30,000 runners participated nationwide.

The runs are casual, fun runs held in parks.

>>> The Tacoma version of Pat's Run began in Thea's Park at 9 a.m. April 26. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

Approximately 80 runners and walkers showed up at Tacoma's Thea's Park early Saturday morning to raise money for the foundation which funds the Tillman Military Scholars program.

"It's great to be here, to give back," said 1st Lt. Jason Wagner, 2nd Battalion, 12th Field Artillery Regiment, before the start of the 4.2-mile run. "I am one of the scholars who received money from the program to help pay for law school."

According to a statement issued by race promoters, more than 230 Tillman Military Scholars from 34 states have received $3.2 million.

"It is a privilege to publically pay homage to him," said Renner before beginning the run. "His is a cause worth preserving."

>>> Spc. Brandon Judd, 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, picks up a flower honoring the Boston Marathon after finishing Pat's Run in Thea Park.Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

>>> TRVLSQD members pack up their gear before shouldering rucksacks and a 150-pound log in memory of a friend's father and in support of the Tillman Military Scholars program.Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

April 19, 2014 at 12:47pm

513th Transportation Company at JBLM to honor Clover Park High School art students

Nearly a dozen Clover Park High School art students volunteered their time over the past several months to design and paint a mural in the U.S. Army’s 513th Transportation Company’s boardroom to highlight the company’s history. Photo credit: Frank Casey

Clover Park School District has plans for you Thursday night. Let's take a look ...

Nearly a dozen Clover Park High School (CPHS) art students will be honored Thursday, April 24 by members of the U.S. Army's 513th Transportation Company for designing and painting a mural in the company's boardroom. The mural shows scenes of the company's history. Company representatives will present students with special coins and certificates. 


April 16, 2014 at 7:33am

Wednesday Morning Joe: McChord airman wins, defense cuts freakout, Game of Drones, stealth dirt bike, 10 scientific mysteries ...

Cafe Elite across from Tacoma Community College is a drive-thru only joint.


JBLM soldier found dead in the woods near Olympia Tuesday was the nephew of two presumed victims of last month's devastating landslide in Washington state.

446th Airlift Wing reservist named Howard O. Scott Citizen-Airman of the Year.

Former Sgt. Kyle White will receive the Medal of Honor for heroism in 2007 while serving as a specialist in Afghanistan.

Defense Department officials released a report that documents the cuts to military forces, modernization and readiness that will be required if defense budgets are held at sequester-levels in the years beyond fiscal year 2015.

The Pentagon's planned five-year spending plan for procurement and research-and-development projects, set forth in its 2015 budget proposal, would be cut by $66 billion if US federal spending caps remain in place.

More than $1 trillion in sequestration-related defense cuts, slated for now through 2021, "would significantly increase risks both in the short- and long-term," according to a report released Monday by the Pentagon.

Confidential U.S. assessments, which the State Department tried to hide from the public, show nearly all Afghan Cabinet ministries are woefully ill-prepared to govern after the U.S. withdraws its troops.

Is North Korea about to collapse?

A group of 11 lawmakers on Tuesday called for members of NATO to end all defense contracts with Russia over the conflict in Ukraine.

Planning for withdrawal in Afghanistan may be smart, but it's not wise.

China has good reasons to remain secretive about its military.

The National Guard Association of the United States accused Army leaders of refusing to create a commission that could show reserve force are cheaper to maintain than the active duty.

Game of Drones: It will be tough to go into the big battle against drones without the irrepressible Goose.

U.S. military leaders have approved funding to develop a hybrid, stealth motorcycle to be driven by special operations teams in the not too distant future.

Russian missile system masquerading as innocent cargo container.

Patients at Veterans Affairs medical centers remain satisfied with the care they receive and complaints are down, a new survey released Wednesday by the American Customer Satisfaction Index found.

Tricare announced its plans for reinstating thousands of beneficiaries who lost eligibility for Tricare Prime last October, but by law, not all who were booted off Prime will be able to re-enroll.

General Dynamics says the Army's Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle competition is stacked against its 8×8 Stryker.

Hollywood is going to war again, and this time, Brad Pitt is in charge.

The soldiers of the 1st Battalion 69th Infantry aren't Navy SEALs, but now they've played them on TV.

The high-tech soldiers of the future are here.

List: 10 amazing discoveries that remain unexplained by science.

The Legacy of The Colbert Report: the joke's on you!

The X-Men: Days of Future Past trailer debuted on Conan last night.

Taylor Swift and Karlie Kloss continue to morph into exact replicas of each other.

Yep, Nicolas Cage makes a good movie every five years. There's even a chart to prove it.

What beer are people really drinking?

Nice: Check out one dad's pop-culture lunches.

Kicked in the head by a train ...

April 15, 2014 at 5:04pm

Remains of missing JBLM soldier identified

This just in from 7th Infantry Division Public Affairs Office at Joint Base Lewis-McChord:

The Thurston County Sheriff Department recovered the body of Spc. Christopher S. Dombroski, 20, of Wasilla, Alaska, a Joint Base Lewis-McChord Soldier missing since April 13.
Dombroski was a Stryker systems maintainer. He entered military service in August 2011 and attended Advance Individual Training in Military Occupational Specialty 91S (Stryker Systems Maintainer) at Fort Lee, Va. Dombroski served on one overseas deployment to Afghanistan from November 2012 to July 2013 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
He was assigned to the 4-2 Styker Brigade Combat Team at JBLM in May 2012. His awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terror Medal, NATO Medal, and Army Service Ribbon.
Thurston County search and rescue crews found Dombroski's remains Tuesday. Thurston County authorities informed the chain of command that they suspect there was no foul play involved. The incident is still under investigation.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Spc. Dombroski's family and friends during this time of loss," said Lt. Col. Joseph Sowers, 7th Inf. Div. Public Affairs Officer.  "We'd like to thank Thurston County search and rescue crews and Gray's Harbor authorities for their efforts. Our focus now is on supporting the survivors who have lost their beloved son, friend and teammate."

About this blog

News and entertainment from Joint Base Lewis-McChord’s most awesome weekly newspapers - The Ranger, Northwest Airlifter and Weekly Volcano.

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