25 Utah soldiers bound for Afghanistan

Posted at 2:39 PM, Feb 09, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-09 16:39:35-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- A group of Utah soldiers with expertise in financial matters are heading to Afghanistan for a 9-month deployment at the end of the month, and they said their farewells on Saturday.

The 395th Financial Management Company is based at Fort Douglas, and 25 reservists with Detachment 1 were the focus of a deployment ceremony on Saturday.

The unit helps other soldiers with financial advice and money management. For deployed soldiers, things like payment issues, debt and money transfers are often far from the forefront of their minds. Sgt. Tyler Lindsay said he and his fellow soldiers take care of such issues for their brothers and sisters in arms.

“It is important, because if soldiers are worried about their pay then they can’t focus on the mission, so we take care of that for them,” he said.

Lt. Nathan Bond is leaving on his fourth deployment on a financial mission, and he said they help the locals in Afghanistan in addition to their fellow soldiers.

“We want to make sure that the local economy is getting reimbursed for what they’ve done for the U.S. Soldiers over there,” he said. “Most of our contracts are geared towards the local economy, because we don’t want to just get stuff sent from the United States when we have the ability to get it off the local economy and kind of help them out while we’re over there.”

Bond said their group will follow up on contracts and will close deals made with those in Afghanistan.

“Not only were we over there to defeat the terrorists, but also to, I guess, stimulate their economy as well and give them a basic foundation to continue to grow when we leave,” he said.

The soldiers will undergo post-deployment training at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey before beginning a 9-month deployment to Afghanistan.