First Brigade Combat Team Final Run Before Deployment
The Third Infantry Division out of Fort Stewart is being called to duty yet again. This week more than 3,500 soldiers will deploy to Iraq, but before they go one brigade had one last run as a whole.
Monday morning was the last time the First Brigade Combat Team would be together for a while. First Brigade commander Col. John Charlton said, "I wanted to get them all together to say a few words and tell them how proud I am"
Col. Charlton wanted his unit to have one last run together before they all start deploying this week. In a speech to the soldiers Charlton said, "Your nation has called upon you once again to go over there and defend our freedom."
The group run has one main purpose. "It's about getting together;" said Staff Sgt. Matakiah Fogle, "knowing that were all on one accord getting ready to go over there."
The weather was not favorable Monday morning. The soldiers stood by as the rain poured down on them, listening to every word Col. Charlton and Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch had to say, but there was a little humor in the pouring conditions. "When they look back on this day they will enjoy this weather," said Gen. Lynch, "because of the weather they're about to get in Iraq."
Soldiers commented on their deployment. "At this point we're so ready, we're anxious," said 1st Lt. Andrew Prescott. "We've been training to do this for a while, so we're ready to go."
However, this isn't this unit's first time in Iraq. Ninety percent of these soldiers have been deployed not once, not twice, but three times. "Multiple deployments, that's a call of duty," said Gen. Lynch. "We do what we have to do for our nation so our kids and grandkids won't have to worry about terrorism."
Soldiers agree. "That's my job. I have no problem with it," said Sgt. Fogle.
Before they go, Col. Charlton had one final message: "Spend as much as you can with you friends and family before you go."
That's exactly what these soldiers are planning to do.
Reported by: Christy Hutchings
Godspeed 1st Brigade.