Officers relay military tales

Even cows parachute out of airplanes.

It’s quite a sight, 1st Lt. Andy Timmick and 1st Lt. Morgan Moxley, told students in Bill Shirley’s Current World Affairs class at Allen Community College Tuesday. Both serve as logistics officers with the U.S. Army’s 82nd Airborne Division and recently returned from deployment to Afghanistan.

The 82nd Airborne typically drops people out of airplanes, but they’ll do what’s called “a heavy drop” to deliver equipment, food, supplies and even animals such as cows or chickens to areas they can’t otherwise reach. The cow drop came as part of negotiations with locals, who likely asked for the livestock in return for information, Timmick said.

“They landed. It’s safe,” Timmick assured the amused students.

“It’s pretty cool what you can push out of an aircraft and put in a different area,” Moxley said.

The officers spoke to students about their experience with the Army and their time in Afghanistan. Shirley said he likes to bring in speakers to talk about current events and felt students would be able to relate to the Army officers, who are close in age. Moxley also is Shirley’s granddaughter and daughter of former Iolan Sara Moxley, now of Leavenworth.

Both Moxley and Timmick joined the Army’s ROTC program, which helped them pay for four years of college. Moxley plans to continue her military career, while Timmick, of Bridgewater, N.J., is going to law school.

Deployment to Afghanistan took some getting used to, they said. The large base at Kandahar was frequently the target of rockets, Moxley said.

“Our base was huge and they were really bad at aiming,” she said.

“It was a little jarring at first,” Timmick added. “But it wasn’t like you were walking around in fear all the time.”

Still, they faced threats. One month after their arrival, two soldiers were killed. A lieutenant on his first mission suffered serious injuries and received a Purple Heart.

Their primary mission is to train, advise and assist their Afghan counterparts. They worked with a variety of people, including civilian defense contractors and coalition members from Romania and Bulgaria.

As officers of a logistics unit, Moxley and Timmick supported an engineer battalion. They provided water, fuel and supplies. They also repaired vehicles that had broken down or suffered damage from improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

“We were in charge of maintenance, which sounds really boring but it’s a super important job,” Moxley said. “I really enjoy supporting people and helping them do their job.”

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