Deployment: Pfc. Christopher Ott, of Niles, stands with his family after his training graduation. From left, Ott’s younger brother, Caleb, Ott’s mother, Susan, Ott, and his father, David. Ott deployed to Guantanamo Bay Aug. 27.

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Brandywine graduate deployed

Published 1:16pm Monday, September 3, 2012


Pfc. Christopher Ott, of Niles, has always felt the need to serve his country. On Aug. 27, he left for his first deployment.

The 428th Military Police Company of the U.S. Army Reserves, Ott’s company, embarked on a year-long deployment to Guantanamo Bay. Ott is a 2008 graduate of Brandywine High School and a student at University of Michigan. After joining the Reserves a year ago and completing basic and AIT training, Ott got word that he and other servicemen and women in his company would be deploying.

“Ever since he was little, he was interested in military service,” Susan Ott, Christopher’s mother, said. “He told me that even as he got older, he ‘couldn’t get the need to serve out.’”

So Ott joined the Reserves a year ago and completed basic and AIT training with other, many of whom are also leaving on their first deployment out of the country.

“It’s an honorable decision for young men and women to choose,” Susan Ott said.

According to Susan, Ott and his fellow servicemen are in Fort Worth, Texas, completing additional training before flying to Guantanamo Bay.

“It’s very emotional; highs and lows,” Susan said. “I remind myself that this is what he wants and what he’s trying to do.”

Susan said Ott’s family, including his father, David, younger brother, Caleb, and fiance, Amelia Harrison, also a Brandywine graduate, are all supportive and understanding of his dream.

“He’s inspired his brother to look into it,” Susan said. “But maybe just a few more years before that happens.”

According to Susan, the company will have access to the internet to communicate with loved ones. Other information about the deployment, however, will be kept confidential.

“That’s a need-to-know basis, and mom doesn’t need to know,” Susan said with a laugh.

Susan said that, while she and her family miss Ott, they understand his choice and are happy he is following his plans.

“I have faith in the other soldiers and his command,” Susan said. “I’m OK with it.”

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