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Deployed Chaplain Officiates Wedding via Skype

BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan - Deployed Lt. Col. David Mansberger, 455th Air Expeditionary Wing head chaplain, officiated his niece’s wedding ceremony via Skype here Nov. 17, 2013.

The wedding, held in Athens, Ga., joined Matthew and Kellie Raferty in marriage, and it became the 43rd ceremony the chaplain has presided over.

Mansberger, a 21-year Air Force and Navy veteran, has been a chaplain since 1989. He said he plans to sign the marriage certificate once he redeploys in accordance with the guidance of the state.

“This was my first wedding I officiated on Skype,” said Mansberger who deployed from Yokota Air Base, Japan, and is a native of Woodruff, Wis. “It was technically challenging, but I had an ordained pastor as a good stand-in who did part of the service when the system froze.” 

The chaplain added the event was special because it brought the family together and it was the first of many family weddings he hopes to officiate in the future.

“This wedding was a family affair,” he said. “My wife flew in from Japan, and we are very happy for Matthew and Kellie. We have been blessed with a great family and friends.”

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