News: 'Ready First' celebrates 235th Army Birthday
Story by Pfc. Jessica Luhrs-Stabile
KIRKUK, Iraq -- Soldiers of 1st Brigade Combat Team, ‘Ready First’ 1st Armored Division out of Fort Bliss, Texas, celebrated the 235th Army Birthday during a ceremony at their Dining Facility, Forward Operating Base Warrior, Kirkuk, Iraq, June 14.
The event began with an invocation from Maj. Mark Diddle, chaplain for ‘Ready First.’
Following the invocation Command Sgt. Maj. James P. Daniels, command sergeant major for ‘Ready First,’ who was also celebrating his birthday in the Army, spoke to his Soldiers about how they are a part of history.
“Today marks another glorious day in the history books, for 235 years the American Soldier has paved the way so others can have freedom, prosperity and pursue happiness,” he said.
He finished by thanking all of the ‘Ready First’ Soldiers for their commitment and faithful service, whether they serve 3 years or twenty.
After Command Sgt. Maj. Daniels spoke, Staff Sgt. David Henderson, a North Carolina native and Pfc. Alexandra Rankin, a native of California, both of 501st Brigade Support Battalion, ‘Ready First’ spoke to the crowd on why they were in the Army and why they wanted to stay in.
Rankin explained her leadership has played a role in her decision to stay in the Army.
“They always push me to be my best and because of that I want to make the Army a career,” she said.
Henderson said he came into the military looking for a better life for his family and he found it.
When the speakers were finished the crowd sang the ‘Iron Soldier Song’ and the ‘Army Song’ before the cutting of the ceremonial cake.
The ceremony ended with Col. Larry Swift, Ready First commander thanking all of the Soldiers for attending and wishing them all a Happy Army Birthday.