Father and Son Soldiers

By Brandi Hodges - bio | email

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - "He's just kind of doing like I did and following in dad's footsteps," said Sergeant First Class Stan Jones.

20-year-old Matthew Jones is a Specialist E-4 in the National Guard.  He joined up two years ago just before the 875th left for Iraq the first time.

"He just had it in his mind of, 'Dad I've got to do something,' he said, 'I've got to make a difference', so he joined up," said SFC Jones.

"I thought, 'Well if everybody has appreciation for you I might as well go and go for everybody else that can't do it'," said Specialist Jones.

Now as he enters into his first deployment Specialist Jones isn't the only one who is nervous, his dad is too.

"I know what he's fixing to go through because I've been through it.  I hate it for him but it's something he's wanted to do as long as I can remember he always wanted to do the same thing I did," said SFC Jones.

Now the younger Specialist Jones is off to Afghanistan serving his country just like his dad.

"I'm not going to lie, he didn't want me to do it but he supported me every bit of the way," said Specialist Jones.

"You've got to respect that.  As a dad I can't say, 'Hey don't do what I'm doing'.  You've just got to bear with it and go with him and just support him the best way you can," said SFC Jones.

These two men are trying to watch out for the other

I'd rather be going instead of him.  I'd rather be in danger than my father, so I guess it's opposite for him he'd rather go and me stay back," said Specialist Jones.

"I asked to go with them and Captain Mason did not want me to go because there could be a future deployment and actually I would be needed more at that time than I am needed right now," said SFC Jones.

In the days leading up to the deployment, Specialist Jones said they have everything essential for the mission.

"Everybody's talked to us about it and they tell us stories and we're just ready to get over there and have some stories of our own to come back and tell," said Specialist Jones.

Each of these 196 soldiers leaves behind family and friends who will continue to support them while they are gone.  The men are expected to return in November or December of this year.

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