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    Know your Defender-Staff Sgt. Melissa Brandt [Image 3 of 4]

    Know your Defender-Staff Sgt. Melissa Brandt

    ZADAR, CROATIA

    05.19.2021

    Photo by Sgt. Alexandra Shea 

    U.S. Army Europe and Africa   

    Meet Staff Sgt. Melissa Brandt, a Patriot launching station enhanced operator sergeant assigned to 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery. Brandt and her unit are currently deployed to Croatia in support of DEFENDER-Europe 21. She and her Soldiers were responsible for the movement and set up of the Patriot Missile System at a Croatian air base shortly after arrival to the country. “We pack up our launchers, move them and place them. We also focus on missile reload,” Brandt said of her team. “Without us, there would be no [Patriot] firing.”

    Brandt enlisted in the Army about 10 years ago. “I didn’t have any real passions coming out of high school,” Brandt said. After enlisting and joining the non-commissioned officer corps, she found and developed that passion by “teaching Soldiers.” “Enlisting helped me develop a passion I didn’t even know I had,” she said.

    Now she is tasked with being a platoon sergeant while deployed with her unit in Croatia. Shortly after arriving, she and her team established a launching station for the Patriot Missile Systems and worked tirelessly to set the systems up to conduct combined training with NATO allied and partner forces as part of DEFENDER-Europe 21, a large-scale U.S. Army-led exercise designed to build readiness and interoperability between U.S., NATO allies and partner militaries. This year more than 28,000 multinational forces from 26 nations will conduct nearly simultaneous operations across more than 30 training areas in more than a dozen countries from the Baltics to the strategically important Balkans and Black Sea Region. Follow the latest news and information about DEFENDER-Europe 21, visit www.EuropeAfrica.army.mil/DefenderEurope. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Alexandra Shea)

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    IMAGE INFO

    Date Taken: 05.19.2021
    Date Posted: 05.19.2021 13:06
    Photo ID: 6651789
    VIRIN: 210519-A-SO154-005
    Resolution: 5896x3964
    Size: 1.12 MB
    Location: ZADAR, HR 
    Hometown: BAUMHOLDER, RP, DE

    Web Views: 97
    Downloads: 4

    PUBLIC DOMAIN