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Stay flying on the Wings of Destiny

Apr 28, 2010

By Spc. Tracy R. Weeden, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade

KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- Soldiers deployed with the 101st Combat Aviation Brigade whose contract expiration term of service falls within their time in theater, may now voluntarily extend their assignment to cover the length of the deployment for a monetary reward through the Deployment Extension Incentive Program.

DEIP was activated in place of the Stop Loss program Jan. 1, 2010, to offer Soldiers the opportunity to stay with their unit during the term of deployment.

The Stop Loss program required Soldiers to stay in the Army past their expiration of term of service if they were assigned to a deployed unit.

DEIP allows Soldiers to extend their ETS to 60 days after their units' redeployment date.

Soldiers who choose to participate in the program will receive $350 per month for each full month they extend their service commitment.

DEIP payments are tax-free while in theatre.

To take advantage of this program, Soldiers must enroll 90 days prior to their ETS date.

This program only applies to Soldiers who are fit and eligible for the deployment, however Soldiers are not required to meet the reenlistment qualification criteria.

If the Soldier were to return early from their deployment, their DEIP payments would be terminated. However, the first Colonel in the Soldier's chain of command may make the decision not to terminate a Soldiers DEIP pay, depending on the circumstances.

The Soldiers participating in this program will receive their initial DEIP payment on their end of month pay. Payments will continue through the end of the extension period.

Soldiers interested in this program should speak with their servicing career counselor.

Soldiers also had the opportunity to extend their ETS date six to nine month prior to this deployment, allow them to receive $500 per month for each full month they extended their commitment.

Task Force Destiny has had 195 Soldiers participate in the DEIP, which makes more than 50 percent of eligible Soldiers who have participated. Several Soldiers have taken advantage of the program since arriving in theater.

Contributions by Master Sgt. Michael D. Brown, 101st CAB career counselor.

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