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Soldier gets heartwarming send-off

Legion, neighbors unite as Charltonian heads to Iraq

Neighbors and members of Charlton’s American Legion post salute Capt. Mike Mullaly as he drives by en route to his flight to Iraq. The operating room nurse is going there for his second tour of duty to help conclude U.S. operations there. Gus Steeves. (click for larger version)
April 05, 2011
CHARLTON — Most of the time, Mike Mullaly doesn't get the kind of sendoff to his job he received on March 30.

Of course, usually he's just been going to Worcester. On that date, however, he was heading for a flight back to Iraq for his second tour of duty as a captain in the Army Reserves.

In commemoration, the local branch of the American Legion and several neighbors gathered down the street from his Priscilla Drive home to salute him as he drove by.

"We're proud. He never questioned or felt bad about going over," said neighbor Chuck Fagan. "… He's hoping [to return by] Christmas; he thinks it'll be Christmas. According to the government, they'll be out by 2012."

Christine Mullaly, Mike's wife, agreed. Although he technically has a 400-day tour (like his previous one May 2007-July 2008), she said he's going there because the Army needs to maintain a certain number of medical people throughout the pullout process.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

Janines Frostee
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