In the Military

Gregg K. Kakesako

See also: For Your Benefit


St. Louis grad awarded
Bronze Star and Air Medal

Army Chief Warrant Officer Paul Bryant, a 1987 St. Louis School graduate, has been awarded both the Bronze Star and the Air Medal for his services as a UH-60A medevac Black Hawk pilot during the Iraqi war last year. Bryant, 35, was a member of the Hawaii Air National Guard for six years before he joined the Army in 1994 to become a helicopter mechanic, and later attended flight school.

His mother, Sara Bryant, said her son always wanted to fly. "Once he took me out to Mokuleia, where I watched while he flew a glider. He joined the Army because his dream was to fly."

Paul Bryant deployed to Kuwait in January 2003 and served in Iraq from March 20 to May 10 flying medevac missions with the 498th Medical Company (Air Ambulance) supporting the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force. "At one point he said he flew for 25 days straight," said Sara Bryant.

His mother said he is scheduled to return to Iraq next month from Fort Benning for another year-long tour next and is expected to be stationed north of Baghdad.

Bryant is married and has a 10-year-old daughter, Keaki. "When he left last year, he told his daughter that he was going to keep terrorists away from America," Sara Bryant said. "He said that's what it is all about."

Retired Judge Katsugo Miho, who served in World War II as a member of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, has offered to perform a marriage ceremony for any of the Army Reservists who deploy to Iraq next month. Miho was among the 1,500 people who attended a farewell dinner at the Hilton Hawaiian Village for the nearly 600 members of the 411th Engineer Combat Battalion (Heavy).

Maj. Gen. Bob Lee, state adjutant general, also helped with the celebration by flying 10 spouses of soldiers of the 411th from Hilo and 30 more from Maui using the Hawaii Air National Guard's C-130 cargo transport.

The Far Eastern Economic Review last week reported that Adm. Thomas Fargo, U.S. Pacific Forces commander, made an unprecedented and unannounced visit to the Danang naval base during his landmark visit Feb. 10-11 visit to Vietnam.

U.S. officials are interpreting the base visit as a strong signal of Hanoi's interest in stepping up military-to-military relations between the former enemies, the publication said. "Some view the Danang visit as a warming, a confidence-building measure," a U.S. defense official told the review. The official said the Vietnamese told Fargo that he was "the first foreign official to visit that facility," the closest military base to islands in the South China Sea. Fargo's trip to Vietnam followed a visit to Washington by Vietnamese Defense Minister Pham Van Tra in November, the first by a head of the country's military since the Vietnam War ended in 1975.

At $98.5 billion, the Army's proposed spending plan for fiscal year 2005 covers average pay raises of 3.5 percent for soldiers and 1.5 percent for civilians. It also includes funding for the fifth Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Schofield Barracks' 25th Infantry Division (Light) and the formal closure of the Johnston Atoll facility, which the United States was using to dispose of its stockpile of chemical weapons.

Local Naval Reserve recruiters have received top awards for their efforts. Navy Counselor 1st Class Gary Yu was named the enlisted recruiter of the year for the Naval Reserve Recruiting for Area Pacific. Yu was selected from a field of more than 100 other recruiters for the award.

Navy Counselor 1st Class Robert Fendler has been chosen as recruiter of the quarter, intelligence specialist recruiter of the quarter and cryptology technician recruiter of the quarter for Naval Reserve Recruiting Area Pacific for the first quarter of fiscal year 2004.

Navy Counselor 2nd Class Mike Nale, also a member of the enlisted recruiting team at the Honolulu Naval Reserve Center, was named Naval Reserve recruiting region cryptology technician recruiter of the year - the top place in the nation for cryptology technician recruiting - for fiscal year 2003. Nale was also awarded top honors for Naval Reserve Recruiting Area Pacific cryptology technician recruiter of the year for fiscal year 2003.

Moving up

>> Camp Smith: Air Force Brig. Gen. Loyd S. Utterback, deputy director of Strategic Planning and Policy at the U.S. Pacific Command, has been nominated to the rank of major general.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

"In the Military" was compiled from wire reports and other
sources by reporter Gregg K. Kakesako, who covers military affairs for
the Honolulu Star-Bulletin. He can be reached can be reached by phone
at 294-4075 or by e-mail at


E-mail to City Desk


Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
© 2004 Honolulu Star-Bulletin --