Guardsmen honored for Iraq service

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Nearly 80 Vermont Army National Guardsmen who searched roads for improvised explosive devises in Iraq have been honored for their service.

The members of the 131st Engineers and Individual Deployment Augmentees who have been home for months were honored Saturday at a ceremony at the Essex High School.

In Iraq, the Guard members rode in front of convoys and searched roads for IEDs. Vermont National Guard Adjutant Gen. Michael Dubie said the engineers eliminated a total of 1,250 IEDs, which kill an average of one person per explosion.

Sgt. Bob Seavers, of Essex, was awarded a Purple Heart Saturday after suffering a concussion when an IED destroyed the front of his vehicle. The 38-year-old said he has short-term memory loss from the explosion and is receiving help with his recovery from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

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