Former Courtland man calls from Iraq

Published 10:40 am Saturday, May 8, 2010

BASRA, Iraq—Army Sgt. Christopher Fuller’s second tour of duty to Iraq “is a whole lot better than it was last time.”

That’s because according to Fuller, whose hometown is Courtland, the number of attacks during his tour in 2004-05 were tenfold compared to his current year-long assignment.

“I was close to some stuff,” he said. “That’s about all I can say.”

Fuller said he also believes the Iraqis are getting a better grip on their situation.

“The Iraqis are starting to handle their own security, and we’re just assisting them in an advisory roll,” he said.

Sent to Iraq last December, Fuller expects to remain there for another eight months. He is stationed in Fort Riley, Kan., which is where his family lives, and will return there on Jan. 11.

A graduate of Southampton High School, Fuller is responsible for monitoring, tracking and advising combat operations in U.S Division South. He is also responsible for ensuring all judge advocate and paralegal soldiers are kept up-to-date on current military operations in the 1st Infantry Division’s area of responsibility.

Being away from his family is tough, but what makes it worth it is knowing that “We are providing the Iraqis with a more stable and independent country,” Fuller said.

The son of Charles Fuller of Courtland and the late Patricia Fuller, the 37-year-old hasn’t been home in three years.

During a two-week leave this July, Christopher Fuller will meet his wife, Darlene, and children Victoria, 15, and Chance, 10, in Franklin. Darlene Fuller and the children will be returning from a month-long mission trip in Africa. She is the daughter of David and Terry Gangemi.

“I miss the Franklin area and can’t wait to get back there and see people,” Christopher Fuller said.