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henselmonster

April 2017 Newsletter

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Welcome to the April 2017 issue of the MEPD newsletter! 

Next week is STAR WARS CELEBRATION in Orlando! We are planning a detachment photo to take place right after the Legion photo. Please be on the lookout for an announcement soon for all the details. 

I was happy and honored to take over the reigns as Chief Media Officer from Strider as he transition into the position of XO. Big congrats to Strider!!

In this issue:

• A word from our Detachment Leader. 

• Introduce you to the new XO

• An article featuring the women of the MEPD

• Feature the MEPD's newest  Deployed Police Officers and Activated SWAT.

• Dive into the troop log and feature one outstanding troop from the previous month. 

- henselmonster • TD-11787

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The 1st month of being your DL has passed and it was an exciting period for me for sure! Some of us needed to get used to their new position in the staff but we all survived the gauntlet and kept the ball rolling.

Sadly we had to say goodbye to our appointed XO, Smally, as he stepped down after a short period. His successor was quickly found in Strider as he gladly accepted this new challenge, good luck brother!

All in all, we got off on the right foot troops and I’m really looking forward to the rest of this year, working with you and for you.

As you all have seen and noticed some changes have been made already and there are more changes to come. One good example of a revitalized program is the Armorer program. We are slowly seeing progress here but I’d like to invite all you armor builders with mad skills to chime in here and apply for the armorer job for their region/ garrison.

One other thing I’m especially proud of are the plans to establish a female TD patrol/ squad within the MEPD. We all know the Black Widows and our ladies will be the counterpart of them. Ladies, I know you will make the MEPD proud, so sign up, represent the MEPD and make some noise!!!

But one step at a time and I am hoping that in the end all these changes will benefit the brotherhood.

So stay tuned for new developments within the MEPD, log in regularly and keep your spirits high!

 

One last note, take your helmets off to honor our fallen brother TD-2231, Roland Klippel. Our thoughts go out to the family and loved ones.

 

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- dutchy • TD-1560

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This month we meet our new XO, Strider!

1. When did you first join the MEPD, and why a Sandtrooper? 


I joined the MEPD in 2015, relatively late compared to many of the veterans here. Sandtroopers were really my first love and the reason for joining the 501st. Funnily, the inflection point for me was a blog written by our very own Felice about his journey of becoming a sandtrooper which inspired me to do the same.
For me Sandies were always much more interesting than our "plain vanilla" brothers due to their special equipment, BFG's and battle hardened appearance. One other thing which makes the Sandies stand out more than any other detatchment (even if I only learned that later) was the comradeship and mututal support of the Sandtrooper community.


2. What is your favorite part of the MEPD?


Great question! I think my favorite part is the fieldpack section because the search for original parts and the build of an original backpack has been my passion for some time now :) I've also worked with Gino (efx) on his current fieldpack and supplied quite a few parts for his build.


3. Do you have any meaningful troops or interactions as a member of the MEPD?


One of my favorite troops was a photo/video shooting last year with 7 other SWAT troopers in the sand dunes near where I live. Some of those pics ("Imperious Basterds") were even featured on the 501st page. It's really nice that  so many of us live pretty near by in the Frankfurt area so there are lots of opportunites to hang out besides the usual social media.


4. Where would you like to see the MEPD go this next year?

 

I think we have already started off very strongly since Dutchy took over the helm in terms of improving the functionality of our software, having more interaction here on the forum and bringing new and old ideas to life. What I generally love about the MEPD is the passion for research and scratch builds of BFGs and fieldpacks, etc. At the moment it's great to see many of the veterans return to and new guys joining the forum and kind of relighting that fire. As for a specific direction I would love to see more troopers going for SWAT and taking accuracy further step by step.


5. Enough about life in plastic, what do you do in your real life?


 I'm a project manager for a large bank in Germany where I lead IT implementations and migration projects.

 

6. What is something about you that might surprise other members?

 Before I went to college I've been a travel agent for a year and took care of guests in many exotic locations around the world (Maledives, Bali, Tenerife,..). One of my destinations was actual Tunisia where I showed my guests many of the original SW filming locations around Matmata.


7. And last but not least, what would you say to someone who is looking to join the ranks of the MEPD?


Excellent decision ;-)  No but seriously, I think the best thing you can do - and this holds true for basically every costume - is to do a lot of research, study of build threads and getting to know the different armors and their pro's and con's before deciding on a specific armor. For me going SWAT was my goal from the very start so I when I started off I already had a specific trooper in mind I wanted to emulate. This made a lot of things easier later on because I had to do less modifications to my armor.

 
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If you have spent any time here at the MEPD forums, you have no doubt seen the great discussion of the creation of an all-female patrol.  After a few days of the guys weighting in on names, some of the ladies have spoken up with great new ideas.  I’ve had the privilege of chatting with a few of the more active ladies of the group (I troop regularly with them).  I’ve asked them to chat about being a Sandy, their ideas on the new patrol, and of course, their thoughts on a name for the new patrol. 

I first caught up with MEPD forum member, Zuckuss.

1. What is your name and TD #?

Sarah Ensign

TD-92229

 

2. What brought or drew you to the Sandtrooper as a costume choice?

I have always been interested in cosplay, but lacked the talent and resources to make anything notable. My husband, on the other hand, has always had a passion for crafting things out of almost any type of media. He is also a fan of Star Wars. A few years after we met, he got into saber building and would scope out the 501st booth at local comicons, and Star Wars Celebration 6. I finally convinced him to talk to the members at the booth at the Richmond Comicon, and he was hooked. It wasn't until he purchased another 501st member's Sandtrooper suit that I really became involved. 

The Sandy suit came in an unexpected state of disarray. My husband was really disappointed, as the suit had been purchase for himself and was in need of a lot of work to get it approved. That's where I stepped in - I offered that we make the suit for me! I saw the potential and believed in what the outfit could be, so we went to work. I absolutely love my Sandy costume. We worked hard together to build it from the ground up in sanding it, repairing all the joints, fitting it to me, and weathering it up. I was even allergic to some of the paint we used, but it was well worth the effort. My Sandy is the most comfortable suit I have and my number one choice when trooping. 

 

3. How long how you been trooping as a Sandy?

 I've only been a member since September 2016, when I was approved in my first costume - the Sandtroooper!

 

 4. How active are you with trooping? (i.e. how many a year? )  What types of troops are your favorite?

My husband and I are pretty active in our Richmond area's troops. We try to make it to all the cons and local events. Since joining 6 months ago, I have done 12 troops overall - 8 of which were in the Sandy costume. 

 

5. Are folks often surprised to hear a female voice coming from the helmet at your troops?  If so, what is the general reaction?

"Wait, you're a girl"? I hear this all the time when I am wearing my mic in the Sandy. Sometimes I love the fact that everyone assumes I am a male costumer, but other times it gets old fast! I've since made a special pink pauldron (with my husband's help for the stencil, of course) that has the Imperial symbol and my TD ID in Aurebesh. I want the young girls in our trooping audience to know that it's okay to 1 - be a grown-up and have fun with dress up still and 2 - be a female costumer in a suit that is predominately assumed to be for a male. Even with the pink pauldron though, I still get shocked faces! You would think the pink is obvious, but I guess not as much as a female voice coming from a presumably male costume. 

  

6. What are your thoughts on the Female Patrol and its name?  Any favorite name choices? 

I think it is an awesome idea to have some female comradery among the Sandtroopers. My top choice is Sisters of the Sand. I feel that name conveys the idea of sisterhood and the spirit of being a Sandy. It's simple, yet has a good message and feel. 

 

7. How can we add more ladies to the ranks or bring back those who are not as active?

It would be great to have more female Sandtroopers among the ranks. I feel that inactivity does not seem to be limited to gender or the Sandtrooper grouping, but is rather a systemic issue. Having incentives, like patches, or other swag for a certain number of troops is a really neat idea. That way, trooping becomes a thing of honor - "Look! I just got my 10th troop badge"! I know I would find that exciting and it would give me something to look forward to earning. Also, female trooper outings or dinners could be a fun way to bond outside of troops and might be an idea as a Sandy community as well. Finally, we are just trying to enjoy the hobby like everyone else. I feel that sometimes there is uninvited attention just because we are females among a vastly male population of troopers. That, I'm not sure how to fix.

I next had an opportunity to speak with SandEEQuiNN from the MEPD forums.

 

1. What is your name and TD #?

Quinn Brown

TD-91197

 

2. What brought or drew you to the Sandtrooper as a costume choice?

I love Sandtroopers. The “these aren’t the droids you’re looking for” scene was one of my faves.  That and, I’m klutzy and with the dirty suit there’s no need to keep it spotless clean.

 

3. How long how you been trooping as a Sandy?

8 months

 

4. How active are you with trooping? (i.e. how many a year? )  What types of troops are your favorite?

 I’d say mildly active.  My work schedule doesn’t allow for me to be as active as I’d like.  (just a writer’s observation, Quinn has done 9 troops since November with her Garrison, 2 as a TD)

My favorite troops are the 5k runs/ Charity fundraisers.  I love seeing all the people and reactions.

 

5. Are folks often surprised to hear a female voice coming from the helmet at your troops?  If so, what is the general reaction?

Yes, their reactions are very entertaining.  They usually take a step back and have to let it sink in that it’s a woman in armor.

 

6. What are your thoughts on the Female Patrol and its name?  Any favorite name choices? 

I like the idea of having a female patrol. The name is something that I am finding hard to come up with. 

 

7. How can we add more ladies to the ranks or bring back those who are not as active?

 I feel like coming up with the female patrol and getting that going will bring ladies out of “retirement” and bring new candidates.

Trooper Fraulein, one of our more active ladies with the MEPD, had not reported her answers in by deadline, but has expressed an interest in this new patrol as well.

Thank you ladies and I hope this patrol is named and up and running very soon.  Until next month, troop on!

 

- Punisha • TD-10930
 
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Congratulations to our newest Deployed Police Officers in the past month!

Jedicheeseboy • TD-90409

Stevieboy • TD-18969

Teajay • TD-12864

Sascha9481G • TD-31816

Spliedt729 • TD-77290

Dan Walters • TD-29057

 

There are no new SWAT activations yet this year, good luck to those currently under review. Hope to see you here next month!

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This month's Troop of the Month goes to Zuckuss/TD-92229. On March 25th, Tyranus Garrison participated in a young man's funeral service who lost the battle with cancer. Beckett loved Star Wars and became an honorary member of Tyranus Garrison. For those who have trooped a children's hospital, you know how emotional those can be so appearing at a funeral service must have been very difficult.

Buckets off in memory of young Beckett and the great work  of TD-92229 & Tyranus Garrison for honoring the family's wishes and representing the Legion proudly! 

 

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 - Airborne Trooper • TD-82573

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Great newsletter!
Thx everyone involved!

And it is refreshing reading the points of view of our Sandy sisters!

THX for sharing!!

 

Saludos

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Excellent work again team!!!

And good reading too :duim:

:salute:

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Outstanding work! You guys are on a roll now! :td::duim:

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