CAMDEN, Tenn. (WKRN) — The mayor of Benton County will be travel overseas for his fifth deployment as a member of the armed forces.
Mayor Brett Lashlee, a sergeant first class in the Tennessee Army National Guard’s 1957th Contingency Contracting Team, will travel to the Horn of Africa for a nine-month deployment.
“I didn’t expect a deployment to come during my service as county mayor, but my commitment to my country has been called,” Lashlee said in a statement.
He added, “I proudly campaigned on the fact that I was a member of the Tennessee National Guard and although I value my service to Benton County, I equally value my obligation of military service to this country.”
Lashlee’s team will leave for Fort Hood, Texas, on June 22 to complete final pre-deployment training before travelling to Africa.
The 1957th is a five-person contracting team tasked with facilitating contracts in the region. The contracting teams help soldiers in need of support for goods and services, like food, supplies, and construction materials.
Lashlee was also a member of the 1957th during his last deployment from 2011 to 2012 in Afghanistan.
“Our team is more experienced than ever before,” the mayor said. “We have accomplished a lot of training and our team members have worked hard to put ourselves in a position to succeed.”
Lashlee has 24 years of combined service between the Army Reserves and National Guard.
He said this will be his final deployment, as he will retire from the Army National Guard in Oct. 2022, when he turns 60.