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Lightning and rain forced cancellation of a planned community parade to honor members of the Company B, 1-128th Infantry unit on Saturday.

Community shows appreciation for Company B's Iraq service

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Lightning and rain forced cancellation of a planned community parade to honor members of the Company B, 1-128th Infantry unit on Saturday.

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But soldiers, family members and community representatives improvised and conducted a short ceremony inside instead.

Company B members returned in January from a 10-month deployment in Iraq. This past weekend was the first time the group had assembled for a weekend drill since their return to Wisconsin soil. The weekend was pretty much set aside to catch up with fellow soldiers and celebrate the bonds they developed while overseas.

When it was determined that it was too dangerous to conduct Saturday's parade and ceremony in Glover Park, Family Readiness Group representatives quickly organized a back-up plan for the afternoon.

American flags were handed out to all in attendance at the Company B Armory.

Capt. Randal Miller, the battalion chaplain, told the crowd that he's always impressed with the support Company B soldiers receive in and around New Richmond.

"This community shows up every time, all the time," he said. "It's just phenomenal support that this company receives. It's encouraging to see that."

Miller offered a prayer of blessing as the brief ceremony began.

Yellow ribbons, which were displayed on a special wall of honor in Glover Park over the past year, were taken down and brought to the National Guard Armory. Each ribbon was given to the individual soldiers and their family members.

The first ribbon returned went to the parents of Cord Allan Daentl, Bloomington, who was killed in a car accident April 1. Scott and Lori Daentl attended the event and were honored with a special plaque as well.

After the ribbons were distributed, the soldiers were dismissed. An appreciation dinner was then held at Ready Randy's in rural New Richmond for the soldiers and their families. Door prizes, which were donated by local businesses, were handed out to the troops.

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