|
|
|
Wayne Independent - Honesdale, PA
  • Waymart soldier hurt in Afghanistan

  •  Staff Sgt. Michael Kacer (Jr.), a native of Waymart, was seriously injured in a rocket battle in Afghanistan several days ago. Family members reported on Wednesday that Kacer was taken Sunday to Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington, D.C.


    • email print
  •  Staff Sgt. Michael Kacer (Jr.), a native of Waymart, was seriously injured in a rocket battle in Afghanistan several days ago. Family members reported on Wednesday that Kacer was taken Sunday to Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington, D.C.
    A soldier with the 1st Battalion, 109th Infantry, Pa. National Guard, Kacer is a member of Bravo Company in New Milford.
    Several soldiers from the 109th Infantry were wounded in the same attack, although it could not be confirmed by deadline their identities or companies. Captain Corey Angell, a spokesman for the Pa. National Guard at Fort Indiantown Gap, stated that there are 700 Pa. National Guard in Afghanistan and some have been wounded in attacks, but could not confirm any details.
    An attempt to contact Bravo Company headquarters was unsuccessful.
    Sgt. Kacer’s uncle, Frank Kacer, who runs a kielbasa business in Waymart, and his sister Mary Andzulis, of Pittstown, NJ, provided information that had been related to them, from the soldier’s father, Michael Kacer, Sr. of Waymart. The father went to Walter Reed to be near his son. Sgt. Kacer’s mother, Betsey, of Atlanta, Georgia, had also arrived at the hospital.
    A message left for Michael Kacer Sr. was yet to be returned.
    Apparently, on Wednesday or Thursday of last week, Sgt. Kacer was on a mission assisting another company, and was on foot patrol. He and the about 15 other soldiers had entered a concrete building. A barrage of shoulder-launched RPG missiles rained down on them. Mary related that her nephew pushed one soldier on the floor out of harm’s way and took the brunt of injuries.
    He was airlifted to Germany, where his left arm was amputated six inches from the shoulder. The soldier also suffered a severed colon and multiple facial fractures. On Sunday he was flown to Washington, D.C., and admitted to Walter Reed. His Uncle Frank stated that he is expected to be at Walter Reed six to 12 months.
    Frank said his nephew, who is 26, was born and raised in Waymart and graduated Western Wayne High School. He joined the National Guard right out of school. He is an assistant manager of Turkey Hill Minut Market in Scranton. In November, Michael married Lauren Marie Worozilcak, prior to Michael’s deployment at the end of the year. They reside in Olyphant.
    Michael was on his third deployment, having served in Bosnia and Iraq.
    “I don’t approve of the war but everyone in the military is a volunteer,” said Frank Kacer, adding he was proud of him. Frank said he wish he could have served in the military but a medical condition prevented it. “We shouldn’t take America’s freedom for granted.” He related his nephew was expected to be decorated.
    Page 2 of 2 - Said the soldier’s Aunt Mary, “He volunteered to go back and feels it was something he had to do. I hope America appreciates their sacrifice. He’s a good kid. Others in his division were hurt too.”
    Captain Angell added concerning the Pa. National Guard, “They’re working hard, and are in harm’s way.” He said they are providing security for provincial reconstruction teams and have been digging wells, building schools, giving medical aid, as well as engaging in combat.
    Michael Sr., Frank noted, is a veteran of the Green Beret Special Forces, and served in Vietnam. He served as a medic. He volunteered at Phoenixville Medical Center, caring for amputees from the war.
    Both Frank and Mary related the excellent care being given wounded soldiers at Walter Reed.
    The incident follows one on June 3rd where Pa. National Guard Staff Sgt. Earl Granville, of Company A based in Honesdale, was injured in combat in Afghanistan. Granville  is also at Walter Reed Medical Center, having required amputation of his left leg and suffered other injuries.

        calendar