Army National Guard Spec. Benjamin L. Boyer has returned to the 1st Battalion, 111 Infantry, 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, Kutztown, after being deployed overseas at a forward operating base in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Operation Iraqi Freedom is the official name given to military operations involving members of the U.S. armed forces and coalition forces participating in efforts to free and secure Iraq. Mission objectives focus on force protection, peacekeeping, stabilization, security and counter-insurgency operations as the Iraqi transitional governing bodies assume full sovereign powers to govern the peoples of Iraq.

Members from all branches of the U.S. military and multinational forces are also assisting in rebuilding Iraq's economic and governmental infrastructure, and training and preparing Iraqi military and security forces to assume full authority and responsibility in defending and preserving Iraq's sovereignty and independence as a democracy.

Boyer is an infantryman with eight years of military service.

The specialist is a 2001 from Tamaqua Area High School.