Army

August 30, 2012

Warriors wed while deployed to Afghanistan


BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan (Aug. 28, 2012) — Weddings are generally associated with spring and summer, champagne and cake. They are new beginnings and grand celebrations with family and friends, not camouflage uniforms, mortar rounds and danger of hostile fire.

However, for one Army couple getting married, the “wedding” was light on champagne and heavy on Army decorum. With a lot of research, emailing, several long distant phone calls and countless piles of paperwork, they were married while in Afghanistan.

It is safe to say weddings do not happen very often in a combat zone. In fact, military chaplains do not perform marriages in theater, so after consulting with their leadership and legal department at Bagram Airfield, the Soldiers found a way to legally express their love for one another.

Sgt. Drew Fidler, 27, from Glen Rock, N.J., and Spc. Michelle Williams, 27, from Auburndale, Fla., were married by double-proxy, Aug. 22, at Bagram Airfield by a company named “A Big Sky Event” in Bigfork, Mont.

“I think weddings are pretty much for other people,” said Williams, a health care specialist (combat medic) with Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 1st Infantry Division, stationed at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. “All that really matters is marrying the person you love.”

Marriage by double-proxy is a process where all the required state forms and licenses are obtained and filled out online and two designated proxies stand in for the bride and groom. A marriage ceremony is performed by a non-denominational minister, and within a few weeks a legal marriage certificate is sent to the happy couple in another state or country.

“We’ve known we wanted to get married for a long time,” said Fidler, an infantryman with the deputy command general support team, DHHB, 1st ID, also stationed at Bagram. “We just didn’t want to wait any longer, so this worked out perfectly.”

The nuptials were celebrated with an impromptu wedding reception on the rooftop of the Joint Operation Center building located at the Combined Joint Task Force -1 compound at Bagram.

In attendance were a small group of friends and co-workers who were happy to help celebrate with non-alcoholic beer and a wedding cake baked by Brig. Gen. Felix Gedney’s wife back at Fort Riley, Kan.

Gedney, the deputy commanding general-Support of 1st ID, CJTF-1 and Regional Command East, Afghanistan, said his wife wanted to bake the cake herself and his son made an Army figurine decoration to place on top, alongside decorative doves.

“I was intrigued and pleased that Montana offered a double-proxy wedding for service members to get married downrange,” said Gedney. “It’s a great story about two great American Soldiers, both serving their country in Afghanistan. They can now look forward to life as a military family and I wish them both the best for the future.”

Proxy marriages are not that uncommon for military members as they are frequently stationed abroad and are not able to join their bride- or groom-to-be physically. Nonetheless, double-proxy marriages are something of an anomaly.

Williams, a graduate of the University of South Florida, said they plan on having a ceremony on a beach in Florida within the next couple of years to celebrate with their family.

“It feels awesome, amazing,” said Fidler. “It’s special to get married here at Bagram Airfield. I never thought it was possible.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Photo by Spc. Denitra Halford, 11th ACR Public Affairs

Ready and Resilient team building

Photo by Spc. Denitra Halford, 11th ACR Public Affairs The 2nd Squadron, 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment commander, Lt. Col. Shane Celeen, congratulates his Soldiers after they took the top trophy in the Commander’s Cup challen...
 
 
Spc. Denitra Halford

Celebrating National American Indian Heritage Month

Spc. Denitra Halford Samuel Martinez, a Cheyenne Dancer, performs at the National American Indian Heritage Month observance here, Dec. 3. The event celebrated the history and culture of the American Indian culture. The Fort Irw...
 
 

Serving here: making a difference in something larger than yourself

Command Sgt. Maj. Noe Salinas and I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season and was able to spend time with friends and family during opportunity leave. The New Year will bring many challenges; we hope that all are well rested and reenergized as 2015 begins. We are very proud of the job that Soldiers,...
 

 
Gustavo Bahena

Cantonment burros moved to wilder pastures

Gustavo Bahena Louis Andreas, lead wrangler with Bureau of Land Management at Ridgecrest, Calif., oversees three burros moving toward a trailer, Dec. 4. Six burros – three females and three males – trotted off a trailer and...
 
 
Photo by Casey Slusser, TASC

Sharing holiday cheer with military, community leaders

Photo by Casey Slusser, TASC (Left to right) Aide-de-camp 1st Lt. Daniel Bukema, Kim Creed, and National Training Center and Fort Irwin Commander Maj. Gen. Ted Martin. Martin presented Creed with a commemorative medal he hand-c...
 
 

News Briefs January 9, 2015

Now through Jan. 28 Enrollment for Theater Arts Drama Club by SKIESUnlimited. Parent Central, building 109, or webtrac.mwr.army.mil. Ages 8-18. Session 1, Jan. 13-29, $30. Session 2, Jan. 29-March 31, $112. Class held at Ingalls Rec., building 361, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 4-5 p.m. Must be enrolled to audition, Jan. 29, for production of “Frozen,” which...
 




One Comment


  1. […] High Desert Warrior » Army 1 min ago by in Fort Irwin. You can follow any responses to this entry through the | RSS feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. […]



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin