Hero in our Midst

Valley Patriot of the Month -
Scott Dempsey

Tech. Sgt. James Moore, USAF

LAWRENCE - Scott Dempsey and his contributions to his country are nothing short of noteworthy. They have been honorable and just. He has been brave and steadfast. The Valley Patriot is delighted to showcase his service as November’s Valley Patriot of the month.

Scott Dempsey was born in Lynn in 1982 to the late Brian survived by his mother, Laurie. Scott has one sibling, sister, Lindsay. He pretty much lived a normal life in the suburb of Boston where he played little league baseball and Pop Warner football with dreams of playing for the Red Sox and the beloved Pats. He was also raised in Lynn where he attended Lynn Vocational and Technical Institute, studying the Electrical Program as well as lettered in Varsity Football.

Shortly after his 20th birthday, he enlisted in the United States Army to become a “19 Delta”, or also known as a Calvary Scout. He left for basic training on Apr 14, 2003 and earned his stripes with the 5/15 Calvary, Bravo troop, second platoon and graduated from Basic Military Training.  His Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) was trained to be a 19 Delta, Armored Reconnaissance Specialist. After 17 weeks of total training, called OSUT, one stop unit training, he graduated on August 15, 2003.

He traveled home to take some leave after Basic Training and prior to going to Germany for his first assignment and boarded a flight to Germany. He reported to Friedberg, home of the 1-37 ARBN (1st Battalion, 37th Regimen Armored Battalion), the Bandits.

Immediately upon his arrival to Friedberg, he was informed that most of his post was already deployed and he, too, would soon be heading in that direction. The foreshadowing of the story was very obvious for Dempsey and he soon left for Baghdad at the end of September to join his scout platoon.

Since his unit was deployed and he was the new guy, he had to work twice as hard to be “squared away”. It was a light scout platoon, or a platoon of Hummvees. During the day, the scout platton would provide gun truck security to convoys, conduct route clearance missions, special operations, and sometimes, humanitarian missions. Scouts wear many hats on the battlefield including providing personal security for the battalion commander as well as the Command Sergeant Major. Dempsey, took his responsibilities as a driver and scout, “very seriously”.

By “very seriously”, he says, a driver held the truck together, making sure that it was up and running, every day. Requiring it to be mission capable at a moment’s notice-being a good scout meant being a good mechanic and very good at “acquisition” he said tongue-and-cheek. Making sure the job got done.

In April, 2004, Dempsey was promoted to Private First Class and soon learned that the tour had been extended indefinitely. They moved from Baghdad to Karbala, where intense door-to-door fighting took place as well as heightened awareness for UXOs (unexploded ordnance) and IED’s (improvised explosive devices), since this was new territory for the unit. For the unit’s work in Karbala, they were awarded the Presidential Unit Citation. Additionally, Dempsey was awarded Combat Spurs and Stetson. This is the HIGHEST honor for a Calvaryman. By the Order of the Combat Spur, he was dubbed a Knight and entered in the rolls of the grand and noble, Order of the Spur. He was also awarded the Army Commendation Medal for his actions in Karbala.

After his time in Karbala and in late August of 2004, he redeployed with his unit to Germany.  After a year and a half there, he was honorably discharged.

 When asked the simple question of why he joined the Army, Dempsey answered in a manner with such resolve and fortitude that it can only come from a war-weary veteran himself: “to sum it up, my favorite subject is (American History) the American Revolution. I love the principles this country was founded on. In the Battle of Lexington, four men from Lynn were killed and two wounded. Men from my city had a huge impact on the formation of this country.”

He continues, “Also a long tradition, as the Pine Grove Cemetery in Lynn will show of great men giving their lives for this great country.” “…I came from a long line of soldiers including a great grandfather who stormed the beaches of Normandy, winning the Bronze Star and Purple Heart…a cousin served in Bosnia and another in Somalia.”

In regard to his passion and love for our wonderful nation and what it means to benefit from being an American, he humbly states:

“All these men that have come before me…(have) given me this country that I enjoy today. They passed the torch to me, and it was my turn to have the honor of defending my country-the honor of carrying my nation’s flag into battle.”

Dempsey, 26, is currently attending Northern Essex Community College in hopes of finishing his degree in Education and becoming a high school History teacher.

“[I would like to] show tomorrow’s young people how great this country is and how it is worth defending and show them how important the past is and its relationship to the future.”

He is also battling another war within himself due to his selfless service in the Middle-East. He wants people to be aware of and to not turn a blind-eye to the affects of war.

 “I would like to get involved with Veterans and to help them navigate the Veteran’s Affairs (VA) system. In a sense, “a way of keeping a brotherhood together even after service is complete.”

He vows that, “the best way for a Veteran to learn about the VA system is through Veterans, not a teleprompt.”  So stay tuned for next month’s issue of the Valley Patriot as we’ll learn of PFC Dempsey’s struggles to obtain assistance through the VA system, in his words….

Scott, you are no doubt a Patriot. We commend you for your service and look forward to reading about your story, next month-same place.

Tech. Sergeant James Moore is a recruiter for the United States Air Force and our Valley Patriot Hero Columnist. You can e-mail Sgt. Moore at James. Moore.73@us.af.mil or you can call him at 978-686-1464



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