Two south Georgia civilian Marines are deployed - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Two south Georgia civilian Marines are deployed

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Two more south Georgia civilian Marines are on their way to Afghanistan.

The workers from Maintenance Center Albany left around noon on Thursday, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Both men will be deployed one year.

Both men have been deployed multiple times, and they both say leaving their families is the hardest part.

This is Donnie Collett's 4th deployment.

He is confident but says he is nervous about leaving.

"Anytime you go overseas anywhere, you might not come back and I do not want to think that, I want to stay level headed keep my mind straight to what I have to do and do it and do not worry about what could happen," says Donnie Wayne Collett, Civilian Marine.

Charles Tinson has been deployed twice before, but says he still gets nervous too.

"It is like playing football, you get a little nervous when the game starts, but after you get in there it is okay," says Charles Tinson, Civilian Marine.

Both men say the hardest part is leaving their families behind.

"Grand-babies, they are 3 and 2 years old. They ask 'where is grand-daddy going,' and they do not know, it is a sad time," says Collett.

"I am leaving everybody I got behind, I will pick them back up when I get home," says Tinson.

They will both be doing maintenance and repair work similar to what they do done here at the Marine Corps Logistics Base.

"You actually get to see the work that is done out here at the base, being used as it is intended to be used in keeping the young men and women safe," says Edwin Hill, MCLB Supervisor.

They will be refurbishing battle damaged vehicles to protect the men and women who are using them.

Donnie Collett was never in the service and says he is proud to be able to serve the troops fighting in Afghanistan.

"A young service member comes up and pats you on the back and tells you, 'thank you, because what you did saved some body's life,' that is when you get the goose bumps and the chills and you know that you are making a difference," says Hill.

For now, they are already looking forward to their two weeks of rest and recuperation.

In 6 months, both men will take their R and R time, where they get to come home for two weeks and see their families before going back to finish their last 6 months.

The men will refurbish military vehicles 7 days a week, and about 14 hours per day.

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