News: Colorado Guardsmen earn combat patch
Story by Staff Sgt. Liesl Marelli
CAMP RAMADI, Iraq - August 21 was a historic day for 3rd Battalion, 157th Field Artillery, Colorado Army National Guard, 115th Fires Brigade.
In a ceremony at the battalion's motor pool, Soldiers were presented with the 115th FiB combat patch by brigade commander Col. Richard Knowlton and brigade command Sgt. Maj. Kenton Franklin.
According to U.S. Army regulations, Soldiers deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from March 19, 2003 to present are authorized to wear a shoulder sleeve insignia for wartime service on their right arm to symbolize their deployment in the Central Command area of operations.
Knowlton removed his own combat patch and placed it on 3rd Battalion, 157th Field Artillery Commander Lt. Col. Al Morris' right arm.
Knowlton then patched the battalion staff, special staff, battery commanders, first sergeants and the color guard.
Once presented with the shoulder sleeve insignia, the battery commanders and first sergeants went one-by-one patching their Soldiers' right arm.
Soldiers who have already earned a combat patch for previous deployments have the option to now wear the 115th FiB patch or 3-157 FA patch, in addition to the other patches they earned before. Soldiers also have the option to have a "naked" right arm and not display anything.
With the many options available, Soldiers tend to display a combat patch so other Soldiers know they've done their time in a combat zone.
The patch is worn on the right arm under the infrared American flag. The unit patch for 3-157 FA is worn on the left arm to show they are currently assigned to the battalion. The combat patch is worn under the subdued American Flag to show the unit in which they served under while deployed in support of the Global War on Terrorism. On the left arm, Soldiers wear the shoulder sleeve insignia for 3-157 FA to show what battalion they are currently assigned.