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    Kosovo Force 19 begins their mission

    Kosovo Force 19 begins their mission

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Melissa Parrish | U.S. Army Lt. Col. Clint J. Baker and U.S. Army Command Sgt. Maj. Mitchell Rucker, of...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Melissa Parrish 

    Multinational Battle Group - East (KFOR)

    CAMP BONDSTEEL, Kosovo – Paratroopers of the 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division took command of Multinational Battle Group-East from the 504th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, stationed out of Fort Hood, Texas, Oct. 25 at Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo.

    U.S. Army Col. Chuck T. Hensley, a native of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and the commander of the 504th BSB, transferred authority of MNBG-E to U.S. Army Lt. Col. Clint J. Baker, a native of Hamilton, Texas, with the 4-25th IBCT (ABN), also known as "Spartan Brigade."

    “The brigade’s time in Kosovo proved to be both professionally and personally rewarding for everyone assigned to the battle group,” said Hensley. “I know I can speak for everyone when I say that our time spent here [in Kosovo] will not be soon forgotten, as the relationships we forged with the people of Kosovo will have a lasting, positive impact for years to come.”

    The commanding general of Kosovo Forces (KFOR), Italian army Maj. Gen. Francesco Figliuolo, spoke to the outgoing and incoming commanders and the Soldiers that are taking over the mission.

    “Today is a very special day for both the commanders and their battle groups,” said Figliuolo. “For Col. Hensley this day marks the end of a very successful tour, and for Col. Baker, today marks the beginning of a new opportunity and very challenging assignment in a time of significant development in this region.”

    NATO Forces have maintained a presence in Kosovo for the last 15 years helping to maintain stability in the region. American, Armenian, German, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Slovenian and Turkish soldiers work together to provide a safe and secure environment to ensure freedom of movement for the people of Kosovo.

    “For 15 years, the Soldiers and Airmen of the United States have played a pivotal role in improving the conditions here in Kosovo,” said Figliuolo.

    The peacekeeping operation, headed by NATO, has been monitoring the region since 1999.

    “No commander can fulfill his duties without highly-motivated Soldiers,” said Figliuolo. “While I am not able to list all the achievements of each and every Soldier, let me assure you, I highly value the efforts of every Soldier here.”

    He ended the ceremony speaking to the Kosovo Force 19 MNGB-E Soldiers.

    “I am proud of the work you have done and will do for Multinational Battle Group East, for KFOR, and for the people in Kosovo,” said Figliuolo. “I am proud to see American, Armenian, German, Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Slovenian and Turkish soldiers serving together, shoulder-to-shoulder, contributing to the success of the KFOR mission.”

    The Soldiers will remain in Kosovo until the summer of next year.



    Date Taken: 10.25.2014
    Date Posted: 10.25.2014 16:05
    Story ID: 146066
    Location: CAMP BONDSTEEL, ZZ 
    Hometown: HAMILTON, TX, US
    Hometown: WILKES-BARRE, PA, US

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