Macomb, IL – Illinois National Guard troops based in Macomb returned to western Illinois after spending the past year in Iraq running convoy security and other security patrols. They arrived home in time for the holidays, though the hour of their return was not exactly ideal. The troops arrived at the Macomb Armory shortly before 3:00 a.m. Sunday. Despite the pre-dawn hour, hundreds of people packed the building's gymnasium to greet the soldiers. Two members of the unit received the Purple Heart during the brief homecoming ceremony.
Keokuk, IA – More than 14 months ago, the 224th Engineer Battalion was mobilized as part of the global fight against terrorism. The nearly 500 members of the Fairfield-based unit are now back home with their families after spending the past year in Iraq. The troops were welcomed home during ceremonies held throughout southeast Iowa Saturday. In Keokuk, Wright Fieldhouse was filled with family members, friends, and supporters. Mayor Dave Gudgel said the community will do its best to remember the work done by the soldiers.
Macomb, IL – A new summer camp for high school students will emphasize both leadership and the global nature of modern business. The week-long session is sponsored by the Western Illinois Center for Entrepreneurship. Director Siddiq Shah says it will include features of other leadership camps, including communication, team-building and problem solving. However, he says one full day will be devoted to global business and resources. The week-long camp will include business, academic and political guest speakers.
Keokuk, IA – Nearly 500 soldiers will be honored across Southeast Iowa tomorrow morning. Welcome home ceremonies for the Fairfield-based 224th Engineer Battalion will be held in 5 communities at 11 AM. Mayor Dave Gudgel says the homecoming ceremony in Keokuk for Company C, Detachment 1, will last about 30 minutes. He says the ceremony at the high school will include live music, a choir, and several guest speakers. The buses carrying the soldiers to Keokuk from Fort Sill, Oklahoma, will travel north on the Highway 61 bypass and then turn south on Highway 218.