• News

Offaly soldier describes Christmas in Lebanon

Monday, 23rd December, 2013 11:00am

Story by Laura Ryder
Jump to comments
Offaly soldier describes Christmas in Lebanon

Gunner Steven O'Connell from Rhode will spend this Christmas on duty in Lebanon.

Offaly soldier describes Christmas in Lebanon

Gunner Steven O'Connell from Rhode will spend this Christmas on duty in Lebanon.

While you’re tucking into turkey and ham on December 25, 21-year-old soldier Steven O’Connell from Rhode will be on patrol on his first overseas mission in Lebanon.

The gunner is the youngest member of the 170-strong 42nd Infantry Group - including seven soldiers from Offaly - that began a six month rotation in mid-November monitoring hostilities, assisting the government of Lebanon and supporting the Lebanese armed forces.

Speaking to the Offaly Independent Steven said what he’ll miss most this Christmas is Christmas Eve Mass and opening presents with his family at home on Christmas morning.

Steven joined the army in March 2011. He described his first overseas mission to Lebanon as a new experience that is “enjoyable so far” this week, but added that it is also “very cold”.

“Christmas Day will be like any other day, which will consist of patrolling and carrying out regular duties,” he explained, adding that he is on area domination patrol (ADP) on Christmas Day. “We continue to operate as normal over the Christmas period,” he added.

While Steven’s family back home in Rhode will be tucking into a Christmas dinner, he’s also expecting a feast. “I know the cooks will have a good spread prepared,” he said.

Though Steven will miss out on exchanging presents with his family on Christmas Day, his day won’t be bereft of presents.

“In my platoon we have also decided to do a Kris Kinle so hopefully I’m lucky and someone gets me a nice surprise,” he said.

Steven also has a message for his family and friends back home - “to enjoy Christmas and keep safe over the period. I will see them in the New Year.”

Offaly Independent-Read in full for FREE. Subscribe here.

Post a Comment

Group Publications

Cookies on Offaly Independent website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. We also use cookies to ensure we show you advertising that is relevant to you. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Offaly Independent website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookie settings at any time by amending your browser settings.
How does Offaly Independent use cookies?
Cookies enable us to identify your device, or you when you have logged in. We use cookies that are strictly necessary to enable you to move around the site or to provide certain basic features. We use cookies to enhance the functionality of the website by storing your preferences, for example. We also use cookies to help us to improve the performance of our website to provide you with a better user experience.
We don’t sell the information collected by cookies, nor do we disclose the information to third parties, except where required by law (for example to government bodies and law enforcement agencies).
Hide Message