News: Kansas ADT earns combat patch
By 1st Lt. Kathleen Argonza-Pangburn
LAGHMAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan – On Nov. 26, members of Kansas Agribusiness Development Team 4 formed ranks at Forward Operating Base Mehtar Lam, Laghman province, to adorn the 1st Cavalry patch on their right sleeve, designating them as veterans who have served in a theater of combat.
“For soldiers, earning the right to wear a right shoulder patch is a rite of passage earned through hard work,” says Maj. Carlin G. Williams of Olathe, Kan., and ADT 4 executive officer. “These guys have earned it.”
Of the assigned ADT 4 soldiers, 34 have deployed before, four are veterans of Desert Storm, 27 are Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans, three have deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, four have deployed to Kuwait, two to Bosnia and many have deployed to other humanitarian, non-combat tours.
“I earned my first combat patch in 1990 during Desert Shield, Desert Storm,” recollects Capt. Todd J. Stuke of Topeka, Kan., and ADT 4 officer in charge of the agricultural section. “I was a stinger gunner assigned to the 4-5 Air Defense Artillery Battalion, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. It was an honor for me then to be a member of the 1st Cav, and that honor still remains as I serve in Afghanistan.”
Along with the honor of donning their new combat patches, four soldiers were promoted.
“Being promoted overseas is an experience that a soldier will remember for the rest of their lives,” said Williams, as he looked proudly over the team.