Island soldier deploying to Operation Iraqi Freedom
Operation Iraqi Freedom is the official name given to the military operations involving members of the U.S. armed forces and coalition forces participating in efforts to secure Iraq.
In the coming weeks, Gladding will be joined by some 5,800 troops from Fort Drum, N.Y., and 1,300 soldiers from Fort Polk, La., and will assume responsibilities at a forward operating location. Together they will fight in the insurgency and help the Iraqi government become independent. This deployment is set to last one year at this point.
Currently stationed at Fort Drum, Gladding is an administrative specialist with a secondary title of postal operations specialist.
Gladding is currently assigned to the 710th Brigade Support Battalion, but when deployed he will be attached to the Headquarters of the Third Brigade. He has served in the military for two years.
Thomas Gladding is the son of David and Elke Gladding of 18 Bay Street. He is a 1999 graduate of North Kingstown High School.