From Brandenburg to Iraq
Local amenities entice soldier to become resident

By LARRY SEE JR.

April 30, 2008

Photo by Larry See Jr.
Sgt. 1st Class Aaron Loos stands in front of his unit's insignia during a break from a training exercise. Loos, a Meade County resident, is preparing to deploy with his unit, the 3rd ESC, late next month.

He thought it was neat how the Army took care of their own, following a visit to a local Veterans Administration hospital.

That was the hook for Sgt. 1st Class Aaron Loos.

"I grew up in a small town outside of Rochester, N.Y.," Loos said. "Before I came to Fort Knox, I was in Germany with the 3rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary)."

The unit's mission is to provide logistics and distribution management for the troops, according to Public Affairs Officer Maj. Paul Hayes. Loos enlisted because of the patriotism he felt for his country and the fact the program offered college funding.

"I particularly remember the one incident with my father's friend," Loos said. "He was a Vietnam veteran and had served three years in the Army. He asked if I could please take him to the VA hospital, which was 60 miles away."

"I was impressed with the type of organization which takes care of their soldiers like they did," he said. "I thought this was a great organization, the U.S. Army. I wanted to be involved with this organization which takes care of their people."

Loos works in the inspector general's office where he is the noncommissioned officer in charge. The unit's organizational chart shows the office is part of the general's staff. They are responsible for mediating disputes between soldiers.

"We're the voice and conscience of the command officers," Loos explained. "We are a mediator to sort out the different situations."

In order to become a staff member, Loos attended a three-week course at Fort Belvoir, Va. He was selected for the position by his branch manager. "He thought I was the type of guy they were looking for," Loos said. "He said I was straightforward, honest and I would be a fair and impartial fact finder for any situation. It has worked out great and I believe I have done it right so far."

When he departs for Iraq, the most important thing he'll miss is his family.

When he departs for Iraq, he wants to assure his family members are safe.

"I think my family will be safe and they'll enjoy a great community," he said. "I won't have to worry about that and can focus on my mission in Iraq."

"The community is a wonderful place," Loos said. "We are close to the river where we can go fishing and the children can go out and play. I purchased 18 acres and the kids absolutely love it. It is rural and quiet, just the same as home. It really is a comfortable feeling to be here," he said.

Loos admitted, despite the fact this was his third tour in Iraq, every time he left it was hard on his family.

"It does get hard on the family, but my wife has started building relations in the community," he said. "She is gaining some friends in the community. My daughter loves school. She wants to get involved in some of the summer sports and activities."

His family consists of a 5-year-old daughter and two boys, one 2 and the other 10 months old.

"My daughter attends Brandenburg Primary and she is excited about what she has learned," he said. "That's great."

Loos said two friends who relocated earlier, spoke of the county's attributes, which prompted his decision.

"They spoke well of the county," he recalled. "The Meade County schools were first and foremost for me. I was looking for a safe place and good schools and I also like the rural area."

"Louisville would not be a good match for us," he grinned. "The first thing when I arrived in Meade County was to look at the school district."

Loos arrived in Meade County last April, shortly before the Kentucky Derby.

This story, written by Larry See Jr., was provided to One Knox courtesy of The Meade County Messenger. Read more stories from The Meade County Messenger at www.meadecountymessenger.com.