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Smither, James (Interviewer)

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Grace, Matthew

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After leaving his first unit after his first deployment in the Fall of 2010, Matthew Grace moved to Fort Carson, Colorado where he was assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. At this point, Grace was a Specialist and was quickly back to his normal routine by January of 2011. As a Specialist, Grace took an interest in helping to train his unit’s new group of Privates, specifically through PT and weaponry. Grace found out that he was leaving for his second deployment in the Summer of 2011 and left for Afghanistan in April of 2012. Grace left later than the rest of his unit to go to dog handling training, but eventually flunked out and returned to his unit in Afghanistan. Once in Afghanistan, Grace’s platoon had the job of specifically ensuring the safety of their Battalion Commander and getting him to wherever he needed to go. This was his platoon’s main task throughout the entire deployment. Grace’s tour was over at the end of November/the beginning of December of 2012. Upon finishing his deployment, Grace returned home to the States and took his block-leave, returning back to work for the remainder of his time with the Army. Grace’s ETS date was January 26, 2014. Grace encountered minimal amounts of reintegration training once resuming life as a civilian. One thing Grace was required to do, was to create a plan for life after reentering society. Grace applied to a couple universities and eventually ended up attending Grand Valley State University where he studied history to eventually get his PhD and become a professor. As a whole, Grace believes that his time in the Army plays a big role in his life and states that he would not be as successful as he is without it.

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Veterans History Project collection, (RHC-27)