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Creating home away from home

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Since November soldiers deployed to Forward Operating Base Mirwais in Uruzgan province have been improving their austere living conditions one day at a time.

Those deployed to Mirwais are from two units: the military advisory team from the Texas National Guard’s 56th Infantry Brigade Combat Team and the security force and protection team from 2-3 Brigade Troops Battalion, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team.

FOB Mirwais commander Capt. Jeffery Kennedy from 2-3 BSTB, 2ABCT, said the two teams on the FOB have built walls for the gym, fixed broken water pipes, and ordered supplies for the dining facility.

“These tasks are in addition to their primary roles of advising the Afghan government and providing security for themselves, the FOB, and patrols in the local area,” Capt. Kennedy said.

Improving the conditions at FOB Mirwais is part of the soldiers’ daily routine.

“Daily there is something new we have to address that we did not plan for or expect to happen, such as, building steps, fixing doors, and even helping cook at the dining facility,” said SECFOR platoon leader, 1st Lt. Jonathan Seaton.

“My guys deployed as a security element but they’ve improvised with the tools and capabilities they brought with them to make Mirwais our home,” Seaton said.

Soldiers like SECFOR platoon Sgt. Paul Burk who lives on the FOB enjoys normal duties like patrolling but always look forward to coming back to their home away from home.

“The FOB doesn’t have luxuries of the big bases like Kandahar or Tarin Kot such as shops or big gyms, but we always look forward to going back there after a long days patrol,” Burk said.

Article by Capt. Gina Goris, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division