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During a humanitarian mission, June 20, 2007, Lt. Col. Guy Edmondson (left) hands out clothing to village children in Mosul, Iraq. U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Bradley J. Clark

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Guy Edmondson
U.S. Army Spc. Michael Edmondson

Duty to Country a Family Affair for Edmondsons

By Pfc. Bradley J. Clark
4th Brigade Combat Team 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs

FORWARD OPERATING BASE MAREZ, Iraq, July 2, 2007 —  Many children follow in their parents’ footsteps, but is isn’t common for parents to keep pace with their children.

That was just the case when two members of the Edmondson family found themselves stationed on the same Forward Operating Base in Mosul, Iraq.

Spc. Michael Edmondson, postal operations specialist, 747th Adjutant General Postal Company, who has been stationed at FOB Marez since November, heard in January that the Army was sending him a unique gift.

“I was pretty excited when I heard my dad was going to be here,” said Michael.

Michael’s father, Lt. Col. Guy Edmondson, military transition team commander, 2nd Brigade, 2nd Iraqi Army Division, had spent four months trying to find a way to get sent back to Iraq.

“I started working different ways to volunteer for Iraq in August, when I found out he was deploying,” said Guy. “When I found out in January that we were going to be at the same base I was surprised.”

The father and son reunited the good, old-fashioned American way, over a meal at the dining facility, March 1.

Surprisingly, this is not the first time the Edmondsons have been on the same installation together.

“The first time I was on a MiTT, back in ’05, Michael’s reserve unit was the one that handled our pre-deployment,” said Guy.

“I processed him the day he checked in,” said Michael. “And the day he deployed I was working security at the theater where they staged.”

While being in a war zone can be more stressful than being stateside, Guy was able to find a way to loosen the tension by playing a joke on his son.

“The first time he came over to visit me and my team was for a barbecue,” said Guy. “He was here for 30 minutes when my [executive officer] came out and told us there was a firefight and we had to roll. My gunner wasn’t around so I asked him if he wanted to be my gunner.”

“All I could think was my M-16 (rifle) wasn’t going to do much,” said Michael. “But they had an M-240 and it’s just like a [squad automatic weapon], so I could do it. There was a job to do so I was going to do it. They needed me.”

“My [executive officer] came back out and said, ‘16 dead, 40 injured, you got to go now,’ and then threw a vest at him and we mounted up,” said Guy.

“I wasn’t scared at all,” said Michael. “I had fire in my veins.”

“At that point we couldn’t let it go any further,” said Guy. “We had to tell him we were just kidding.”

“Of course I was mad,” said Michael. “But you have to admit, it was pretty funny.”

Even though they are able to have fun together, both soldiers have a vital mission in Iraq that they take seriously.

Photo - See caption below.
U.S. Army Spc. Michael Edmondson and Lt. Col. Guy Edmondson enjoy some father-son time, June 26, 2007, at Forward Operating Base Marez in Mosul, Iraq. The two have a combined 28 years of service to their country and hail from Colorado Springs, Colo. U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Bradley J. Clark

“I break down pallets, sort mail and distribute mail to units in northern Iraq,” said Michael. “We cover everyone above FOB Q-West.”

“My job is advising the 2nd Brigade commander,” said Guy. “I work with my team to push the [Iraqi army] from coalition forces to Iraqi control for the western part of Mosul. Our goal is to turn over control to the Iraqi security forces and government as soon as possible. When you look at Mosul, both CF and ISF are having a great deal of success.”

When it comes to his father’s job, Michael sees nothing but success and knows that his father will handle his duties professionally.

“My dad will never change,” said Michael. “If he can do it, it will be done right at whatever the cost is. I have full confidence in him and his team. They are more of a family than a team. If you look, they are shifting control to the Iraqi forces, who are learning and taking the challenge well.”

As far as Guy’s feelings toward his son and being stationed together, he is happy that their deployment was able to turn out the way it did.

“It’s an experience most families don’t get to share,” said Guy. “I am so proud of him. He enlisted after 9-11 because he felt he had a job to do and he is over here doing it.”

They plan on spending some time together stateside as well. Guy is taking rest and relaxation leave in November, when Michael is scheduled to redeploy back to the states.

Last Updated:
07/02/2007, Eastern Daylight Time
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