News: 101st Airborne Division returns from Iraq
Story by Spc. Jeanine Kinville
by Sgt. Jeanine Kinville
101st (AA) PAO
FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. -- Maj. Gen. Thomas R. Turner, commander, 101st Airborne Division and Task Force Band of Brothers, and Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Grippe, division command sergeant major, marked the division's return from Iraq to Fort Campbell, Ky., when Turner reported to 18th Airborne Corps Commander, Lt. Gen. John Vines, and uncased the unit colors in a homecoming ceremony Friday.
Thousands of Screaming Eagle Soldiers of the 101st who formed Task Force Band of Brothers alongside several other units have returned over the past few weeks from their year-long deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq. More than 1,000 Soldiers returned Friday, which marked the return of over 11,000 Soldiers and half of the 101st at home.
"We are proud of what the division has accomplished over the past year in northern Iraq," said Turner. "But we return with no illusions about this war. We are home to prepare for our next rendezvous."
With reintegration as the next step for the 101st, Turner acknowledged the Soldiers who helped accomplish the mission for Iraq and the Global War on Terrorism.
"You, the American Soldier, you are the most precious system we have," Turner said. "There is nothing heading our way on a ship or a plane more critical to winning this war than you. You have learned over the past year that it is not the technology or latest equipment that sees you through, it's the Screaming Eagle on your left and right that assured victory."
While in Iraq, Task Force Band of Brothers, based in Tikrit, was responsible for operations in Multi-National Division-North -- which included nearly all of the country's land north of Baghdad.
During the deployment, Soldiers trained thousands of Iraqi Security Forces personnel and helped rebuild Iraqi infrastructure by providing operational assistance and security. Civil operations helped rebuild schools, provided job assistance for Iraqis, and promoted economic growth for the region. Two Iraqi Army Divisions also assumed responsibility for security in their respective areas with the help of TF Band of Brothers.
With two brigade combat teams, 2nd BCT and 4th BCT, of the 101st still in Iraq under Task Force Baghdad, Turner looks forward to their arrival back to Campbell through November.
"As we return, there are still Strike and Curahee Soldiers in the fight," Turner said. "We pray for the safe returns of those Screaming Eagle brother and sisters still engaged in Iraq."
The 25th Infantry Division from Schofield Barracks, Hawaii, assumed responsibility of MND-N from Task Force Band of Brothers on Sep. 13 in Tikrit on Contingency Operating Base Speicher.