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Many Soldiers Marking Holiday In War Zone

By Angela Hatton, Kentucky Public RadioWhile Thanksgiving means family gatherings for many, thousands of troops in Iraq and Afghanistan will be on duty for the holiday. Nearly 17,000 members of the 101st Airborne Division from Kentucky’s Fort Campbell Army Base are deployed in combat. Fort Campbell spokesperson Rick Rzepka says they’ll get a brief chance to mark the holiday. “I know they will get a good meal. Which I know doesn’t sound like much to you and (me) right now, but a hot meal when you’ve been eating MRE’s for two to three months, it’s pretty special,” he said. Traditionally, unit leaders serve the meal to soldiers, both on deployment and on base. Rzepka says the number of Fort Campbell soldiers fighting overseas will soon increase. Soldiers in the 159th Combat Aviation Brigade will deploy in the next two months.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.