'Together For The Holidays' Deployed Siblings Reunite In Iraq
(January 13, 2011)
BAGHDAD (1/10/2011) – This time of the year, being away from Family can
be extremely difficult for deployed military personnel, and
for their families back home. However, the Nuckols Family,
of Dillwyn, Va., can take comfort in knowing their children
were able to spend the holidays together, even though they
were thousands of miles from home.
Spc. Victoria Nuckols and her brother, Pfc. John Nuckols,
deployed to Iraq at the same time, were able to see each
other just in time for Christmas.
Victoria serves as
an intelligence analyst with 1st Squadron, 6th Cavalry
Regiment, 1st Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Infantry
Division, United States Division – North. She is currently
stationed at Kirkuk Air Base, about 150 miles north of
Baghdad, and was fortunate enough to fly to Camp Taji, just
north of Baghdad, to see her brother who serves as
an infantryman with
Dec. 24, 2010 - Siblings Pfc. John Nuckols (left), an infantryman with Company H, 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – Center, and Spc. Victoria Nuckols, an intelligence analyst with 1st Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, United States Division – North, both Dillwyn, Va., natives, were able to spend Christmas eve together at Camp Taji, Iraq.
|1st Battalion, 18th
Infantry Regiment, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade,
1st Infantry Division, United States Division –
Victoria approached Lt.
Col. Kenneth Chase, commander of 1st Sqdn., 6th Cav. Regt.,
with the idea to travel to Camp Taji and spend the holidays
with her brother. Chase supported the idea and made all the
necessary arrangements. |
“The biggest challenge
during my deployment was being without the familiarities of
home,” Victoria said. “Having the opportunity to spend time
with my brother on Christmas Day was extremely meaningful.”
The two have not seen each other since last Christmas at
their home in Virginia, when John came home from basic
training and Victoria met him on her coinciding leave before
A year later, the two were reunited in
Iraq and spent the day catching up. They spent Christmas Eve
talking about shared military experiences, recapping
childhood memories and watching a Christmas movie.
John said it has always been a Family tradition to watch
“National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation” on Christmas Eve.
This year would be no different because his parents mailed
the DVD to him.
“Being able to watch that movie with
my sister brought a piece of home for me in Iraq,” he said.
Christmas Day was celebrated just like being at
home—dinner with Family and a call to relatives. Dinner was
filled with laughs and the playful teasing that many
siblings have developed, John said.
After dinner the
two called home and spoke with John and Brenda Nuckols,
their father and stepmother, and Kathy Mitchell, their
“Our parents have been concerned with both
of us being deployed at the same time, but they were pleased
to know we got to spend the holidays together,” Victoria
Victoria is nearing the end of her deployment
and John is at the beginning of his. The difference in
deployments limits the time these siblings will spend
together. Understanding this, the siblings said how thankful
they were for everyone who helped bring them together.
“Both of our units recognized the importance of family
during the holidays and seized the opportunity to make our
Christmas wish come true,” Nuckols said.
Article and photo by Army Spc. William K. Ermatinger|
2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division Public Affairs
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