Rice County Correctional Officer Steve Tuma attended today's Rice County Board of Commissioners meeting to be recognized for his upcoming military deployment to Cuba.

Tuma is going to Cuba for a one-year military activation at Guantanamo Bay for a security deployment.

Tuma presented Rice County Sheriff Troy Dunn with a service flag to be posted at the Sheriff's Office during his deployment.

The service flag is an official banner authorized by the Department of Defense for display by families who have members serving in the armed forces during any period of war or hostilities the United States may be engaged in for the duration of such hostilities. The service flag also may be displayed by an organization to honor the members of that organization serving during a period of war or hostilities.

Tuma is a staff sergeant with the 257th Military Police Company based in Monticello, Minn. He was born and raised in Lonsdale and lives in the Owatonna area with his wife, Kelly. Dunn said Tuma has worked at the Sheriff's Office for three years and has been in the military for 17 years.

This will be the fourth deployment of his military service, with two tours in Iraq and one tour in Bosnia. Tuma leaves Thursday for his deployment.

Dunn promptly placed the flag in a window at the Sheriff's Office and says his department is proud to have a department member serving and, "We wish him a safe deployment and a safe return to his family at home and at work."

Commissioners wished Tuma the best and also thanked him for his service.

Rice County Commissioners with Officer Tuma- Photo provided by Rice County Sheriff