Kentucky Guardsmen in Iraq stay true to their Kentucky blue

Spc. David S. Cavitt, Spc. Dakotah K. Bradley, Private 1st Class Blake V. Huff and Spc. Mathew R. Nicholson do the "John Wall" dance in front of a makeshift University of Kentucky Flag at Contingency Operating Location Q-West, Iraq. The Soldiers are assigned to the 2113th Transportation Company which is attached to the 1st Squadron, 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Soldiers will cheer on the Wildcats tonight from Iraq via Webcasts.

By: 1st Lt. DesiRee L. Nicely
1st Squadron, 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment

Editor’s Note: When not wearing the Kentucky National Guard uniform, 1st Lt. DesiRee Nicely is a police officer at the University of Kentucky. While stationed in Iraq, she watches the UK games via the Web. “I’m used to watching them from the floor of Rupp Arena in front of a thunderous student section wearing head-to-toe blue. But now that I’m in Iraq, it’s even more touching to see proud Kentucky men and women in head-to-toe Army green, cheering for their home team,” she said.

CONTINGENCY OPERATING LOCATION Q-WEST, Iraq — March Madness has spread all the way to Iraq, where Kentucky National Guard Soldiers from the Paducah-based 2113th Transportation Company have filled in their brackets and cheered on their beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats – proving that True Blue Fans truly are the best in the world.

 “For the games that weren’t televised in Iraq, I had my wife Jenifer put the Webcam on our TV at home so our guys could watch it on my computer here. At the same time, we had the score streaming and the University of Kentucky commentators on CBSSports.com,” said Spc. David S. Cavitt, armor and weapons expert for the 2113th TC.

 “The funny thing was each source was seconds apart, so we were cheering three different times for the same play. We would see the streaming score, hear the commentators, and then see the play.  It was great,” he said.

 The Kentucky Guard unit is attached to 1st Squadron, 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment headquartered in Henderson, Tenn., but that Tennessee connection has certainly not swayed the loyalty of these Wildcat fans.  They are brothers in arms on missions; still yet, after the mission, Kentucky basketball reigns supreme in the hearts and minds of 2113th TC Soldiers.

 As a tribute to Kentucky’s SEC Championship win, the Soldiers organized and video taped their version of the John Wall Dance. With the Wall Dance now in Iraq, it is now an international phenomenon.

 With March Madness inching to a close, the Kentucky Guardsmen are anxious to see their Cats hang another banner in Rupp Arena.

 As Cal’s Cats take to the floor this evening in Syracuse at 9:57 p.m. EDT, a group of Kentucky National Guardsmen will be half-a-world away, cheering on the Big Blue at 3 a.m. local time in Iraq.

 “The guys will take a nap and set the alarm, just to see Kentucky take it to the house,” Cavitt said.

  No colors run deeper than good ole’ Kentucky blue.

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