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'Raiders' help ring in July 4
Staff Sgt. Christopher Blakeslee
Soldier of the Quarter for 1HBCT, 3rd ID, Spc. Donna Floyd, throws the first pitch, during the Sand Gnats home baseball game at historic Grayson Stadium, July 4. - photo by Staff Sgt. Christopher Blakeslee

Savannah, Ga.


The Sand Gnats, the local minor-league baseball team for Savannah, celebrated Independence Day with a little help from Soldiers of the 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team, Third Infantry Division, at their home ball park Grayson Stadium, July 4.

“We had the Soldier of the quarter for the 1st Heavy Brigade Combat Team throw out the first ‘ceremonial pitch today’,” said Ryan Kirwan, the vice president of public affairs for the Sand Gnats. “It’s always an honor to have Soldiers and Family Members from Fort Stewart attend our games.”

Specialist Donna Floyd, a combat medic, assigned to Co. C, 3rd Brigade Support Battalion, 1HBCT, was humble and ready for the task-at-hand.

“It truly is an honor to be the Soldier of the quarter and I’m excited to be chosen to represent the Raider Brigade here at the Sand Gnats game,” Spc. Floyd said.

On top of throwing out the first pitch, other Dog-Faced Soldiers also assisted in the star spangled celebrations at the park.

Staff Sergeant Dana Fischl, a Fort Stewart band member, was chosen to lead a packed Grayson Stadium in the singing of the national anthem.

“It’s always an honor to sing the national anthem,” Staff Sgt. Fischl said. “Especially here on the 4th of July in front of a large crowd in Savannah.”

While the Sand Gnats came up on the short end of the stick against their foes, the Charleston Dawgs by a score of 3-2, everyone who attended was treated to a great ball game with a fireworks display that lit up the night in a true celebration of all things patriotic on the nation’s birthday.

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