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Soldier Racks Up Miles in Afghanistan

By Army Sgt. Jessi Ann McCormick

Growing up on a farm in Weston, Ohio, Army Spc. Michelle Renay Metzger enjoyed getting dirty and working with farm machinery.

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Army Spc. Michelle Renay Metzger applies grease to her vehicle in Afghanistan’s Uruzgan province, Aug. 12, 2013. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Jessi Ann McCormick
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

A graduate of McComb High School in McComb, Ohio, and current junior at Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio, Metzger said she enjoys sports and four-wheeling, and was drawn to the military in high school.

“I joined the National Guard to better myself in general and have a better appreciation of life,” she explained.

Metzger completed basic training in April 2010 at Fort Jackson, S.C. From there, she attended advanced individual training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., to become a motor transport operator.

“When given the definition of what a motor transport operator was, I couldn’t wait to learn about armored vehicles that had survived improvised explosive device blasts and traversed some of the harshest terrain in the world,” Metzger said. “I am always learning something new about the trucks, whether it is a new device that has been incorporated into the truck or learning how to replace the brake pads.”

Metzger has been deployed with the Ohio Army National Guard’s 1487th Transportation Company since January as a mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle driver. Her daily job includes basic maintenance on the vehicle, such as checking and adding fluids and inspecting the engine, tires and windows. She also is expected to keep her training current on navigation and communication systems, and must keep a strict inventory.

As an MRAP driver, Metzger said, she keeps a log of every mile she’s driven. Her mileage for the deployment now stands at about 3,000.

When she returns home, Metzger said, she plans to help her father with the harvest on her family’s farm while also attending dental hygiene school.

Metzger says the military has presented her with a great sense of accomplishment. While others have told her in the past that she couldn’t join the military, couldn’t drive a gun truck, or couldn’t handle a deployment, she said, she overcame the odds and completed her goals.

“I want my niece and my future children to look up to me in a way that I look up to women in the military,” she said.

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About Edited by Susan Bainbridge

At age 6, Susan was destined to be a journalist and photographer.  In 1980, Susan founded Bainbridge News and The Bainbridge Chronicle Newspaper. Bainbridge News specializes in Military and National Politics, including Military Funerals and Burials and Political Funerals and Burials.  Susan has covered the White House, the Pentagon and Capitol Hill. She has covered every president from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama. Recognized for her versatility, Susan has also covered finance, crime, civil rights events, marches, sports, musical events and more. In 1990, she established Bainbridge Photography, an On-Location photography company. In addition to military and political events, including Military and Political funerals and burials, Bainbridge Photography expanded into covering ALL funerals and burials, receptions, weddings, real estate, inventory, insurance, portrait, head shot, pets, fire and Hazmat.  Miss Bainbridge believes in going the extra mile. "My Clients always come first." In 1980, Susan began her career in Washington, D.C., working for WMZQ Radio as a reporter and guest hostess from 1980 to 1985. Intrigued by radio, Susan wanted to write, freelancing for radio, television and print newspapers, including AP, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Northern Virginia Sun, The Press-Republican and The Bainbridge Chronicle (established by Susan Bainbridge). In 1986, Susan worked at WDCA-TV Channel 20 as a guest hostess for "Eye On Washington." From 1990 to 1994, Susan reported and anchored for "The Arlington Weekly News." Additionally, she produced a segment for the G. Gordon Liddy Radio Show. A prolific writer, while in high school in 1977, Bainbridge wrote an episode for NBC's "Little House on The Prairie" entitled "Laura's Best Friend." Though the show's producers did not use the script then, NBC producers encouraged Susan to pursue a writing and journalism career. Susan is a member of the National Press Club, the National Press Photographer's Association and the Society of Professional Journalists. Susan Bainbridge's recognitions include from former Presidents Ronald Reagan, George Herbert Walker Bush and Bill Clinton, former First Lady Nancy Reagan, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the late actor Lorne Greene, among many others. BAINBRIDGE NEWS was founded in 1980 by Susan Bainbridge (a sixth generation writer), a third generation journalist, a first generation photographer and a fourth generation entrepreneur. She is the first generation to establish a news business. Bainbridge News is dedicated in honor of Miss Bainbridge's late grandfather and idol, Mark S. Watson (The Baltimore Sun editor and war correspondent from 1920 to his death in 1966).

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