News: 515th Engineer Company cases their colors
Story by Sgt. Heather Denby
FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. – The 515th Engineer Company formally cased their company colors Feb. 16 in preparation for deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The SAPPER Company is scheduled to conduct route clearance operations while supporting the 112th Engineer Battalion in eastern Afghanistan.
“Route clearance is important in this region because enables freedom of maneuver for both combat patrols and combat logistical patrols. Additionally, it leads to the collection of improvised explosive device-related intelligence, which further leads to the targeting and destruction of IED cells,” said 1st Lt. Jeffrey Nichols, the 515th Engineer Company executive officer.
This is the company’s first deployment as part of the 4th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade here on post. It is also their first deployment to Afghanistan. The 515th Engineer Company, 5th Engineer Battalion has three previous deployments in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The company has campaign credit for World War II (Aleutian Islands - China Offensive) and Southwest Asia (Defense of Saudi Arabia/Liberation and Defense of Kuwait/Cease Fire).
“I don’t feel that I have to tell you that these men and women are about to go in harm’s way,” said Lt. Col. Thomsen, the 5th Engineer Battalion commander. “The dangers that they will face are real.”
“But I know that when they embark on this mission that this company is well trained and prepared to bring the fight directly to the enemies of the United States and to also represent the American people with honor and dignity,” he said.
The 515th “Outlaws” are scheduled for a yearlong deployment beginning this spring.