Home for Thanksgiving Day
Published 1:05 am Wednesday, December 3, 2003
By BY LYDIA GRIMES Feature Reporter
Thanksgiving means a lot to most people, but there are some that appreciate the day even more.
This past Thanksgiving was a really good one for John Christopher Peavy. He came home the day before turkey day from Iraq. That made for a very good holiday for the young man who has been connected to two wars in that country. He made the trip home even more memorable by getting engaged on Friday to Sandra Hatcher from Berrydale.
The next couple of weeks will be really good for Peavy as he will be back in Iraq by Christmas.
He says this time around has been a lot different than in 1990 during Desert Storm.
The first time over there Peavy stayed about eight or nine months in the infantry and later public affairs serving in Saudi Arabia. He did some journalism, writing for military magazines, and escorted media personnel. He was lucky enough during that time to meet both Norman Schwartzkopf and President George Herbert Bush.
He is just as devoted to his country and his president this time around.
Peavy is a part of the 1165th Military Police unit of the Alabama National Guard that was activated in March of this year to go to Iraq. He, along with other members of the guard, left Brewton, went to Fort Benning and then to Kuwait in May. They stayed there about five weeks before loading and moving north to Baghdad in June.
The convoy rolled into Baghdad and hooked up with the 82nd Airborne and was put up in an empty office building.
A typical day for Peavy and others in his unit is spent training and helping the Iraqi police to get law and order back into everyday life.
It was bad enough when terrorists were bombing the military but the locals have been really angered about the killings of their own people by the extremists.
Based on current information, Peavy believes his unit will be home sometime next spring, but nothing is for sure.
Peavy was born into the military, as he was born in Beaufort, South Carolina while his father, John Robert Peavy, was serving in the U.S. Marines. His parents were originally from Escambia County, Ala. and Santa Rosa County and after his father's hitch in the Marines was over in 1968, the family moved back home and settled on Travis Road.
He attended W.S. Neal Schools and graduated from the high school in 1985. He said he wasn't very athletic while he was in school but he was into music. He played in the W.S. Neal Marching and Concert Bands in the brass section. He also played guitar and piano.
He said he thought about going to college but never did and eventually joined the regular Army in 1989. He was sent to Fort Benning, Ga. for basic training and then to Fort Stewart, Ga. before going to Saudi Arabia in 1990 to take part in Desert Storm.
After he served his time in Saudi, he came back to Ft. Stewart in March of 1991 and stayed until March of 1994. He transferred to Ft. Huachuco in Arizona as Public Affairs Sergeant and was discharged in 1998. He came back to Brewton and did various jobs until September 11, 2001.
He joined the Brewton Police Department and eased into more duties. He had to go to the police academy within six months and everything was going well when the guard unit was activated.
When he returns from Iraq, Peavy plans on coming back to the police department.
Peavy has been married and is the father of three children, Hannah, 13, who was born while he was in Saudi, Emmaleigh, 10, and Sean, four. He and his new fiance will be married when he gets back from active service. He is ready to get back to doing some of the things he loves and is missing overseas. He is a big NASCAR fan, likes to fish, watch college football -- Auburn -- and likes to read. Peavy is one of those who answered the call when his country needed him and those left behind appreciate it along with all the others who are serving in harm's way.