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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Families say goodbye as Bataan group heads for Libya mission

Families say goodbye as Bataan group heads for Libya mission

Posted to: Military Norfolk

Video:

Captain Steve Koehler, the commanding officer of the Bataan, talks about the ship deploying to Libya on short notice.
(Steve Earley | The Virginian-Pilot)
Petty Officer 3rd Class David Weir says goodbye to his wife, Jessica, and son, Cody, as he prepares to deploy on the amphibious assault ship Bataan on Wednesday, March 23, 2011 from Norfolk Naval Station.  The amphibious assault ship was leaving for duty in the Mediterranean as part of the allied effort in Libya.  <span class='credit'>(Steve Earley | The Virginian-Pilot)</span>

1 of 3 photos:

Petty Officer 3rd Class David Weir says goodbye to his wife, Jessica, and son, Cody, as he prepares to deploy on the amphibious assault ship Bataan on Wednesday, March 23, 2011 from Norfolk Naval Station. The amphibious assault ship was leaving for duty in the Mediterranean as part of the allied effort in Libya. (Steve Earley | The Virginian-Pilot)

Families said goodbye to sailors and Marines deploying this morning with the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group.
Three local ships - the Bataan, Mesa Verde and Whidbey Island - were slated to go to sea in July. Two weeks ago, they got word that they'd head out early for duty in the Mediterranean as part of the allied effort in Libya.
Stacie Casey was still in the hospital with her newborn son when her husband learned he'd be shipping out.
"It's obviously really difficult," Casey said, cradling her son in her arms. But she knew what she was getting into when she married her husband last year. "This is what you sign up for," she said.
Capt. Steven Yoder, commodore of Amphibious Squadron Six, said the sailors are ready, despite the early departure.
"Anytime something is breaking in the world, we anticipate getting the call," Yoder said.
He isn't worried about not knowing what situation awaits them once they arrive in the Mediterranean.
"We're able to handle a host of military options," he said. "We're a flexible force."
For more details, return to PilotOnline.com later and read tomorrow's Virginian-Pilot.

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