News: Falcon Brigade honors lost paratroopers
FORT BRAGG, N.C. — There are 50 stars on our nations’ flag that represent all the states that are a part of the United States of America. But for the Falcon Brigade, the number 50 represents a deep commitment to the flag. It represents the number of paratroopers who made the ultimate sacrifice defending what our Nations flag stands for — Freedom.
The 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, held a candle light vigil memorial service, May 22, for all the 2BCT, paratroopers that have been lost during the war on terrorism. The service was conducted at the 82nd Airborne Division Global War on Terrorism Memorial located at the 82nd Airborne Division Museum.Officers, senior non-commissioned officers and guests of the Brigade attended the ceremony.
The ceremony was held for Memorial Day, a day in which the Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division, Army and our Nation honors our past fallen men and woman.
The 2BCT has been deployed 10 times since the start of the war on terrorism, seven times to Iraq, twice to Afghanistan, and once to Haiti. The Falcon Brigade knows the true meaning of sacrifice having participated in many significant conflicts in recent U.S. history.
Col. Tim McAteer, commander of the 2BCT, 82nd Airborne Division, spoke about how that the men and woman of the 2BCT who gave their lives over the years, were people who the Brigade will not forget. “We must use their sacrifices as a guide post of what is expected of us, and it is important to reflect on the true price that these paratroopers had paid.”
McAteer spoke about how “it is quite a sensation as we visit the monument and read the names on the walls; we have some kind of vision of a man or woman we knew and a memory about them. We know their families they left behind. These names have a personal touch on our lives.”
He described how they were our brothers and sisters in arms, and “we must never be too busy or have something more important on a day like this.
“As we guard this candle throughout the night, let us remember the times and memories that we have shared with our fellow paratroopers.”
Through out the night, senior NCOs and officers of the Brigade stood in complete silence in their Army Service Uniforms, guarding the monument and the candle light by McAteer. The candle represented those who gave their lives, like SPC David Hickman, 23, of B Company, 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, from Greensboro, N.C., who was the last paratrooper of the 2BCT who gave his life defending our nation.
This memorial service is small in comparison to the lives lost, but it is one way the 2nd Brigade Combat Team honors and remembers its fallen, but not forgotten paratroopers.
Date Posted:05.24.2012 15:36
Location:FORT BRAGG, NC, US
- Profile of a hero: Paratrooper earns Soldier’s Medal
- 2nd BCT deactivates BSTB, activates 37th Brigade Engineer Battalion
- Getting comfortable with uncertainty: Family life on GRF
- Grenada vets, 82nd leaders share lessons learned 30 years later