Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Veteran Joelpatrick Victor Leger, who served as a helicopter crew chief during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Growing up, Joelpatrick Leger had a passion for aviation. Hoping to receive flight training, he enlisted with the United States Army in 1998. After basic training, Leger went to Fort Eustis, Virginia, for advance training as a Black Hawk utility helicopter crew chief.
From Fort Eustis, Leger went to Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia, and stationed with the maintenance company of 2nd Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division as a Black Hawk helicopter mechanic. Following his time at Hunter Army Airfield, he became a crew chief and served with a flight company responsible for running counternarcotic missions in the Bahamas. In March 2001, Leger went to Camp Stanley, South Korea. He served as a crew chief for one year, transporting people and monitoring the Korean Demilitarized Zone.
Leger then served with the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and later with the 101st Aviation Regiment. There, he served with Alpha Company, 5th Battalion, and served as a primary crew chief on a Black Hawk helicopter.
In November 2002, Leger’s regiment received deployment orders for Iraq. He and his company landed in Kuwait in February 2003 and transported troops and equipment from Kuwait into Iraq. During their time in Iraq, Leger and his fellow soldiers often flew through sandstorms and shot at by the enemy.
Throughout his service, Leger received an Air Medal, an Army Commendation Medal and two Army Achievement Medals.
Leger returned to Fort Campbell, Kentucky in February 2004. After leaving the Army, he returned to his home in Connecticut and began classes at Central Connecticut State University, majoring in education and history.
More on his story can be found at: http://memory.loc.gov/diglib/vhp/story/loc.natlib.afc2001001.67449/
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Veterans History Project
This #VeteranOfTheDay profile was created with interviews submitted to the Veterans History Project. The project collects, preserves, and makes accessible the personal accounts of American war Veterans so that future generations may hear directly from Veterans and better understand the realities of war. Find out more at http://www.loc.gov/vets/.