published Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

CNN airs local band's salute to Dalton soldier serving in Iraq

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After sending a little love -- and some music and stickers -- to U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Watson, of Dalton, Ga., now serving in Iraq, local punk rockers The Unsatisfied got some love back.

CNN did a brief segment Monday on the story.

Watson, assigned to the U.S. Army 18th Infantry, had sent the group a note on its Facebook page back in the summer, saying that he liked the band's music and that he and his unit mates had a hard time getting hold of new entertainment overseas.

The Unsatisfied -- Eric Scealf, Eric Turner, Doug Bales, Joel Hastings and Johnny Stockman -- quickly put together a care package filled with CDs, stickers, snacks and other items and shipped it within a couple of days.

Watson soon wrote back, telling the guys, "The CDs have disappeared. There are Unsatisfied stickers on our guntrucks and my guys are singing your songs!"

Shortly after a recent photo shoot, the guys decided to create a website salute to Watson and the 18th Infantry via iPhone, and they posted the video on CNN's iReporter, where it was picked up by "Headline News Morning Express" anchor Robin Meade, who said, "That is the most original Salute To Troops we've ever had."

"We didn't really expect CNN to run the piece," Bales said in a news release. "We were just going to post it on the site and send Sgt. Watson and his wife a link to share with the troops and their friends. We thought they'd get a kick out of it."

Turner said the band was especially proud that the soldiers chose them and that they chose to put a band sticker on the guntrucks.

"Those guys are superstitious, and it really means a lot that our music means something to them," he said.

At the very least, the group plans to meet Watson soon and hopefully play an acoustic show for him, he said.

"They really made our day," Turner said. "It's weird how a little bit of doing something small can mean so much to someone."

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about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

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