News: 6-17th marks redeployment, change of command
Story by Staff Sgt. Patricia McMurphy
FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska -- The soldiers of 6th Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment officially marked the end of its Iraq deployment and welcomed a new commander Feb. 7 at Fort Wainwright’s Hangar 6.
Although the unit’s 500 Soldiers came home in December, they waited to commemorate that event until they could welcome their incoming commander and give their outgoing leader a hearty send-off.
The 6-17th spent 12 months in Iraq flying more than 4,050 missions, totaling more than 30,000 flight hours.
As one of the last U.S. military units to serve in Operation New Dawn, the squadron provided aviation support to two divisions, five brigade combat teams, various special operations units, and other joint and multinational partners.
“They maintained their fleet of Kiowa Warriors at 90 percent operational readiness; the best in theater,” Maj. Gen. Raymond Palumbo, U.S. Army Alaska commanding general, said.
Palumbo thanked the families for their support to the unit throughout their deployment and said “[Mrs. Sadie McCurry] is the epitome of what the Army wife is and what it ought to be.”
He also thanked her for her “love, affection and care of this great team.”
Lt. Col. Michael McCurry, outgoing 6-17th commander, will serve as interim U.S. Army deputy commander, USARAK North, until he leaves for the Army War College in June.
McCurry relinquished command to Lt. Col. Adam Lange, former U.S. Army Alaska operations officer, USARAK North, during the ceremony.
“I learned a great deal from [McCurry] in a short time, and I am grateful for your friendship and mentoring,” Lange said. “I look forward to continuing that for as long as they are here on post.”
McCurry thanked everyone for attending and asked them to join him in “welcoming home 442 deployed troopers and recognizing their service.”