WEST NORRITON, PA – JANUARY 10, 2008 – A Hero’s Welcome, an organization ensuring that all our Service Members get the proper welcome home from the war, will honor the service of Specialist Jessica Hartranft, US Army this Saturday, January 12, 2008 at 3PM at Spunktown Tavern in Boyertown, PA.

Our hero returned home to the Philadelphia area from Iraq on January 3, 2008 after 15 months of service. Jessica was greeted at the Philadelphia International Airport by her family, including her brother, John, an Iraqi War Vet, and her grandmother, a Women’s Army Corps World War II Vet; several Vietnam Veterans and volunteers from A Hero’s Welcome.

Jessica served in Taji, Iraq for the US Army with the 512th Maintenance Company and provided security details at outposts and checkpoints since her arrival in country. On several occasions, Jessica assumed the gunner’s role and manned a 50 caliber machine gun to provide cover for her unit, traditionally a male-only role. As Jessica’s mom, Karen McNear, told us, “Jessica is truly a tribute to the women who serve in combat” and we expect to honor her as such! Jessica asked that any local Veterans join us as she hopes to swap war stories and compare experiences. All Veterans and their families are welcome to join us, as well as any well-wishers and Patriots.

Jessica joined the Army after completing her 11th grade year in high school. She attended Pottsgrove before graduating from Boyertown High School in 2005. Jessica will be home for 30 days leave before returning to her duty station in Germany. She expects to begin Airborne School in Fort Benning, Georgia, within the next six (6) months.

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