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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Local soldier shares Afghanistan experiences

  • Dr. Major Shayna (Glance) Thompson, a Hannibal native, completed a nine-month deployment with the U.S. Army in the Zabul province in Afghanistan on March 2, and visited her family during the past weekend.
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  • Dr. Major Shayna (Glance) Thompson, a Hannibal native, completed a nine-month deployment with the U.S. Army in the Zabul province in Afghanistan on March 2, and visited her family during the past weekend.
    On Saturday, March 22, Thompson’s parents, Wendell and Mary Glance, hosted a reception for her at their Hannibal home. Thompson was surprised by a visit from Mayor Roy Hark, who presented her a key to the City of Hannibal.
    On Sunday, March 23, she thanked her church, the First Assembly of God, for their prayer support, along with sending items she used to help Afghanistan women learn to become self-supporting.
    In addition to serving as a physician, treating both American and Afghanistan soldiers, Thompson had opportunities to work with Afghan women who were registering to vote in an upcoming election for the first time.
    The women also were learning a trade – sewing – to enable them to become independent. The church members had sent Thompson sewing supplies to distribute to the women.
    Thompson and her husband, Major Edward Thompson II, are parents of a 2-year-old daughter, Eliza. While Shayna was deployed, Eliza was with Edward, who is stationed at Fort Knox, Ky.
    Shayna said that although she was not with her husband and daughter for the past nine months, she was more fortunate than “many generations before us,” because she had pictures and emails and could visit with her family by Skype.
    Now both the Thompsons are due to be re-assigned in the U.S.
     
    Guided by Scripture
    during deployment
     
    As she spoke to her church Sunday, Thompson quoted Psalms 91:1, “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” She said this verse stayed with her throughout her deployment.
    She called this verse the soldiers’ prayer and asked the congregation to continue to pray for American coalition forces in Afghanistan. 
    While in Zabul, she said, she wore a gun and also had armed support, because she was under constant threat.
    She could not be friendly with Afghan children, she said, because they were trained to carry weapons. ”They could pull out a weapon and start firing at us. Their country has been at war all their lives.” She requested the church pray for peace.
    Because children do not have a healthy lifestyle, Thompson said, many have infections. She had the medical “knowledge to help them but not the power,” for lack of medicine.
    She added that women there are expected to have at least 10 children, and if a wife fails to do so, “her husband can kick her out.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Thompson is thankful because “the Lord Jesus brought me back to the greatest country in the world.”
    She also was happy to be home in Hannibal and hear her dad play guitar with the praise team at her church.
    The church displayed a poster of Thompson’s pictures and deployment details. The poster is to be displayed at the Hannibal City Hall.
    Thompson has been notified she will be receiving a Bronze Star for her service in Afghanistan.
    Thompson was in the Hannibal news in 2013. After she learned about the large flag flying on Lover’s Leap being burned, she shared the details with her Army Company, the Third Brigade, First Infantry.
    Thompson bought a flag, and her commanding officer, Col. William Ostlund, flew the flag in Afghanistan, then signed it and mailed it to Hannibal.
    The flag was presented to Hannibal officials, and on Nov. 9, 2003, it was flown in Central Park at the Veterans Day service.

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