Hawaii-based Marines leave for 7-month deployment

Lance Cpl. Alexander Murdaugh
Lance Cpl. Alexander Murdaugh

By Steve Uyehara – bio | email

KANEOHE (HawaiiNewsNow) - About 580 Marines and sailors from Marine Corps Base Hawaii are on their way to Afghanistan.

They deployed Thursday for a seven-month mission in the Helmand province.

"A big portion of this holiday is spent remembering those who have given for our country. But the men who shipped off today want everyone to remember that there is still a war. And there's still work to do."

The men said one last goodbye to their loved ones and friends.

And while they understand their duty, it doesn't mean their wives have to like it.

"I don't know what to think. I don't know. It sucks. It's gotta be extra tough considering it's Veteran's Day, huh? It's Veteran's Day. It's been nine years. It should be over by now," one woman said.

The men are well aware of the significance of Nov. 11 especially those that have been deployed before.

"Sometimes it just feels like people forget about you. It hurts when you're over there. But at the same time when you're back, you kinda' feel the same way. Sometimes you just become a sidenote, I guess. I'm glad there is a day though, for us," Lance Corporal Alexander Murdaugh said.

Staff Sgt. Carlton Smith Dorris spent a lot of time consoling his wife Sarah and had a tough time letting go of his young son, Carlton Smith Dorris IV, also known as "Cinco."

Dorris IV will tell you they need our support.

"It's very important. And it means a lot that young guys, myself, the American public is still there, rootin' us on, the home team."

He's in good spirits. But as he gets set to go, any last words you're gonna give him?

"Just to be safe, take care of himself, take care of his marines, come home safe, and hope the next 7 months go by really fast."

When these Marines and sailors touchdown in Helmand Province there will be a brief transfer of authority between the 2nd and 3rd Battalions. The 3rd Battalion will return to Hawaii sometime in Mid-December.

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