583rd MP Detachment deploys for a year

YOUNGSTOWN — Specialist E-4 James Anthony and his daughter, Pfc. Brenna Mei, were among the 50 members of the Ohio National Guard’s 583rd Military Police Detachment who left Friday for a one-year deployment, including a tour of duty in Iraq.

“I knew it would eventually come,” said Anthony, of being deployed with his diminutive 19-year-old daughter, who enlisted in the guard in February 2007. “I support her 100 percent,” he said.

Mei, whose mother is a member of the Navy Reserve, said she had always wanted to join the military, but with going to college full time, it worked better in the reserve.

Mei, a 2006 graduate of Western Reserve High School, is studying chemistry and French at the University of Akron.

“I want to feel like I’m my own person, but since it is my first deployment, it will be good to have my father with me, who has been through it before,” she said.

Anthony, a truck driver for Ohio Structures, has two previous deployments, one to Croatia and the other to the Middle East.

Anthony and Mei were like a lot of other people in uniform, and out, at Crossroads Church Friday: Ordinary people doing extraordinary service and sacrifice for their country.

For more, read Saturday’s Vindicator and Vindy.com