67th Signal Battalion soldiers run through desert morning

35th Signal Brigade (Theater Tactical)
Story by Spc. Maran Hancock

Date: 02.01.2013
Posted: 02.21.2013 13:01
News ID: 102329
67th Signal Battalion soldiers run through desert morning

CAMP BUEHRING, Kuwait - The 67th Expeditionary Signal Battalion conducted a unit run Jan. 19 at Camp Buehring, the first that the battalion participated in since arriving in Kuwait in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The transfer of authority from 319th Signal Battalion (Expeditionary) to 67th ESB was commemorated in a ceremony held Jan. 18. To mark the official assumption of the mission in the Middle East region and to celebrate the uncasing of the unit colors, the Lightning Force battalion ran the equivalent of a five-kilometer race along various roads on the camp.

“It was a good run, good pace. It was challenging,” said Sgt. 1st Class Garry Pullen, HHC, 67th ESB. “What I like about battalion runs is that it’s an opportunity to show esprit de corps.”

Battalion Commander Lt. Col. Calondra Fortson led the unit through the course, and the colors were carried by command drivers Spc. Eric Gillette, HHC, 67th ESB, and Spc. Jacob Stromberg, HHC, 67th ESB. Upon completion of the run, Fortson addressed the battalion with a speech in which she emphasized the importance of holding a high standard for motivation and work ethic.

Following the Battalion Commander’s speech, Command Sgt. Maj. Andy Frye called the troops to a horseshoe formation, where he reiterated the significance of motivation and later said that with enough hard work, each soldier would be able to return from the deployment, rich and in peak physical condition.

Pfc. Cody Bainbridge, HHC, 67th ESB, expressed excitement about participating in the event. “It was awesome, and it was ener- getic,” he said. “I liked it, everybody stayed together for the most part because it was a good pace for the group to be running. I just like to do the battalion runs.”

Sgt. Devon Washington, C Co., 67th ESB, spoke with pride regarding his company’s performance and complimented the dedication and overall morale of the soldiers.

“Charlie … yeah, we did great,” he said. “All we do is run, so we got it. Not that many people fell out. The soldiers stayed motivated, and they were still sounding off at the end.”

The importance of traditions inherent in battalion runs, particularly with regard to the singing of cadence, also was noted by the participants.

“I like the motivation to keep me running,” said Bainbridge. “If there was no cadence, it would be a boring run.”