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Sept. 11 causes Galt guardsman, wife to renew vows

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Posted: Monday, February 4, 2002 10:00 pm

A street maintenance worker with the city of Lodi is about to leave for duty in Kuwait.

But there's something California National Guardsman Rodney Plamondon had to do first - renew his vows with his wife, Pamm Plamondon.

During family day weekend at Camp Roberts, the Galt couple exchanged vows for the second time before Rodney Plamondon heads for Kuwait.

"We talked about renewing our vows, but we were going to do it on our 10-year anniversary (in 2003)," said Pamm Plamondon, who grew up in Lodi as Pam Boyd and graduated from Tokay High School.

However, the couple changed their minds about renewing their vows on their anniversary because it happens to fall on Sept. 11.

"Sept. 11 is, I guess you could say, tarnished, and I hate to say it, but I wanted another day I could say was just my and Rodney's day," she said.

"That is a day we are all going to remember for the attacks on our country, so we just decided for Sept. 11, that's what we wanted to dedicate our memories to," Staff Sgt. Rodney Plamondon said. "So we wanted to change our date so we can devote it to something just for ourselves."

Rodney Plamondon was going to take his wife to Lake Tahoe on Jan. 4 and surprise her by renewing their vows. But officials at Camp Roberts announced they were going to perform weddings on family day weekend, so they got remarried there instead.

Rodney Plamondon, 34, and Pamm, 32, symbolically remarried during a ceremony conducted by a military chaplain at Camp Roberts, 12 miles north of Paso Robles. Sometime in the next month Plamondon will leave for Kuwait on a routine five-month deployment scheduled prior to the attacks.

Saturday's ceremony was held in a redwood chapel on the base, located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Pamm Plamondon wore a pantsuit; Rodney Plamondon his desert uniform.

"Rod's not a totally romantic person, but it was cool," his wife said.

The Plamondons were among six couples renewing their vows at the ceremony. Sunday marks the last day members of the battalion can spend with family, said base spokesman Staff Sgt. Tom Murotake.

The Galt couple originally married Sept. 11, 1993, which was her grandfather's 75th birthday. Until last September, they had celebrated their anniversary with an annual trip to a San Francisco Giants game, just as they did when they honeymooned on a shoestring.

Rodney Plamondon's last day with the city of Lodi was Jan. 3, and he reported for National Guard duty four days later.

Sometime in the next month, Rodney Plamondon and other members of the 1st Battalion, 184th Infantry Regiment will be deployed to Kuwait, where they will guard Patriot missile batteries as part of the peacekeeping mission established after the end of the Persian Gulf War.

Meanwhile, Pamm Plamondon returned to her job Monday as a mission items research employee at Washington Mutual Bank in Stockton. They each have two children from a previous marriage.

Pamm Plamondon said her husband may come home within 412 months.

"My biggest fear is that he won't come home."

News-Sentinel staff writer Ross Farrow contributed to this report.

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