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Guard soldiers return to Charlotte area from unusual mission

http://66.225.205.104/JR20081205a.mp3

This week four thousand National Guard soldiers from North Carolina are deploying for Iraq. At the same time, a small team of soldiers is coming home to Mooresville from a very different mission Staff Sergeant Lisa Dewmire had barely home a year from her tour in Iraq when she transferred to a new National Guard unit that got another mission. But this time she was headed to the Horn of Africa to drill water wells for remote villages. In a lot of ways, she says the assignment was easier than Iraq. "I wasn't getting shot at, I wasn't getting blown up," says Dewmire. "And you could drink beer legally." But she says the mission was just as important as fighting terror because, "by having a well drilling team go out and drill a well for a village, it increases the stability of that location. You're not going to be tempted by some of the militants that may or may not be in the area." The ten members of the 1133rd Engineer Detachment completed five wells and repaired four others during their year in Africa. They will be honored at a welcome home ceremony tomorrow afternoon at 2 p.m. at the Southside Baptist Church in Mooresville.