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    U.S. Polish march to remember prisoners of war

    U.S. Polish march to remember prisoners of war

    Photo By Sgt. 1st Class Robert Jordan | A Soldier with Headquarters and Headquarters Company (HHC), 1st Armored Brigade Combat...... read more read more

    The Polish army’s 4071st Company, 11th Battalion invited U.S. Soldiers of Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division to march with them in Zagan, Poland, June 7, 2018. The 1st ABCT is deployed to Poland and is stationed in Zagan participating in Atlantic Resolve, an enduring training exercise between NATO and U.S. forces.

    “It builds rapport and interoperability with Polish forces,” said HHC 1st Sgt. Andrew Odell.

    Nearly 30 Polish and U.S. Soldiers gathered outside the headquarters building for the morning 10-kilometer march. Polish leaders inspected their troops Beryl rifles, woodland camouflage uniforms and their packs loaded with 25 pounds of gear and water.

    After a quick briefing on the route, Polish army 1st Lt. Tomek Tracznk’s gave the command for the mixed column to begin. They quickly started their movement down the cobblestone roads of the base.

    The troops exited the base and entered the nearby training area. The Soldiers kicked up clouds of dust as they marched through the forest along a sandy trail.

    Tracznk guided the troops and encouraged them to keep their pace as U.S. Soldiers march alongside. As the marched continued, several Polish noncommissioned officers raced along the column checking on their Soldiers’ well-being.

    “It is a good time to train and we can take the experience and use it with U.S. and NATO,” Tracznk said.
    The path took them past a small village as hikers and cyclists smiled and waved. Just beyond the village lies the Museum of Prisoners of War honoring the memories of all Allied prisoners of war held in Poland during World War II. Currently the museum is found on the former Stalag Luft III World War II POW Camp. The camp was the site of the ‘Great Escape’ where 80 Allied prisoners escaped Nazi confinement, later made famous in the movie starring Steve McQueen.

    “The people before me were tough and I want to build on their legacy of freedom,” said Army Sgt. Jack Hill, an Infantry Soldier with the 1st ABCT.

    At the five-kilometer point, the Soldiers took a break and rested in the forest shade. The Polish showed the American Soldiers their rifles and talked about recent deployments.

    “It makes you proud of what you do,” said Hill.

    Soon the Soldiers returned to the march retracing their path back to the base to prepare for the next training mission.



    Date Taken: 06.11.2018
    Date Posted: 06.12.2018 08:35
    Story ID: 280518
    Location: ZAGAN, PL 

    Web Views: 249
    Downloads: 0