News: Dragon Battalion closes out 'multi-faceted deployment'
CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait – June 14, 2012 marked a historic occasion for the 1st Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Combat Brigade Team, 1st Cavalry Division as the unit cased its colors, commemorating the completion of the battalion’s multi-faceted deployment that ultimately ended an eight-year conflict.
The battalion, stationed out of Fort Hood, Texas, accomplished much to be proud of over the course of its 12-month tour, according to Lt. Col. Edmond Brown, commander of the Dragon Battalion.
In June 2011, the Dragons deployed to Qadisiyyah Province, Diwaniya, Iraq in support of Operation New Dawn where the unit conducted stability and security operations in the Middle Euphrates region in concert with the 8th Iraqi Army Division and Iraqi Security Forces. The battalion’s mission was to secure key terrain to allow over 1,050 vehicles and 100,000 tons of equipment en route to Kuwait to pass safely through its boundaries in support of the final drawdown of United States Forces from Iraq.
On Dec. 15, 2011, the Dragon Battalion signed over its contingency operations station and $35 million dollars worth of equipment to 8th IA, marking the battalion as the last artillery battalion in Iraq.
The Dragons then redeployed to Kuwait with the Ironhorse Brigade in support of U.S. ARCENT operations for the remainder of the brigade’s tour, effectively moving 349 personnel and 94 vehicles on the 449 kilometer road march.
Upon arrival in Kuwait, the Dragon Battalion was the first battalion to draw from the Army Preposition Stock-Five at Kuwait in nine years, drawing nearly 1,000 pieces of equipment valued at over $80 million.
While in Kuwait, the battalion tirelessly took advantage of the best training environment an Artilleryman could ask for, according to Brown.
“Our soldiers have honed their skills as artillerymen,” Brown said. “Kuwait gave us the opportunity to become masters of our profession. We approached training with a tenacity and a will to be the best fires battalion in the Army, completely prepared to carry out our response mission.”
During field artillery gunnery, the Dragons successfully qualified the entire battalion in conjunction with completing a joint combined arms live fire exercise and a Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System Demonstration. In total, during the battalion’s deployment, the Dragons fired 4,006 155mm rounds, over 100 reduced range practice rockets rounds, and four guided multiple launch rocket system rounds.
The Dragon Battalion also established a successful partnership with the Kuwait Land Forces Field Artillery Regiment. This partnership allowed the two units to conduct combined training exercises, making fire support training routine while overall strengthening the working relationship between the Kuwait Land Forces and the U.S. Army.
At the culmination of its deployment, the soldiers of the Dragon Battalion were awarded a total of 36 Combat Awards, 604 End of Tour Awards, 183 Achievement Awards, 165 Drivers Badges, 100 Cavalry Silver Spurs, and 136 Gold Combat Spurs.
“When we left Iraq, we closed a chapter in our country’s history; as we leave Kuwait, Task Force 1-82 FA is more prepared and more ready, than ever before, to fulfill its role of providing artillery fires for the brigade,” Brown stated. “Our organization is continually moving forward.”
Date Posted:06.17.2012 10:58
Location:CAMP BUEHRING, KW
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