Winthrop rolled out the red carpet with a police escort from Logan Airport to welcome home U.S. Army Specialist Beau Schlichting, who just served nine months in Afghanistan as a military police officer in the First Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.
Dozens of people lined the Belle Isle Bridge and Main Street last Saturday afternoon to surprise Schlichting when he came home with his parents Tom and Holly Schlichting and sister Antea.
Beau Schlichting, 20, was raised in Winthrop and is a 2017 graduate of the Northeast Metropolitan Vocational Technical High School in Wakefield.
He joined the U.S. Army right after graduation, something he always wanted to do. His experience in the Winthrop Police Department’s Explorer post, helped bolster his interest in becoming a military police officer.
“The Army gave me better choices of jobs, I could pick what I wanted to do,” Schlichting said.
From boot camp at Fort Benning, Georgia to Afghanistan, Schlichting has served with 11th Bravo as an infantry man and as a Machine gunner.
“It had its ups and downs,” Schlichting said. “We supported the Afghan troops with security. The first three months seemed long, you can get bored if you’re not out doing stuff. The last months we were there it was pretty busy and time flew by.”
Schlichting said he would go back to Afghanistan in a flash because of the commaradere, the fast pace, and the varied work.
One buddy he missed was his German Shepard named Trooper. He’s a little overprotective so couldn’t go to the airport but the two of them will now be spending more time with each other.
He’s also getting back in touch with some of his favorite food, a lobster roll from Belle Isle Seafood and a roast beef sandwich at Kelly’s.
After a three-week stay in Winthrop, Schlichting will travel to base at Fort Carson, Colorado and wait for his next deployment.