More Fort Hood soldiers returned home from Afghanistan last weekend.
About 200 soldiers of the 3rd Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division returned from a nine-month deployment to Afghanistan on Saturday.
The “Red Dragon” Battalion command team uncased the unit’s colors, officially marking its return to Fort Hood.
During deployment, soldiers partnered with Afghan National Security Forces and assisted the International Security Assistance Force Joint Command.
“Our main mission was securing Bagram Airfield and we gave it 110 percent,” said Lt. Col. Phil Brooks, battalion commander. “I’m proud of our soldiers. All the training at (the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, La.) prepared us well and it’s exactly what we saw there, just on a larger scale.”
Brooks said by partnering with the Afghan chief and supporting Afghan troops, he was able to see just how much they are capable of and what they are able to accomplish.
“The biggest gain is that they’re (skilled) in policing themselves,” said Brooks, scanning the crowd. “This is the fourth time I’ve crossed this field and there’s a lot of emotion here today. It’s a great day for a great ceremony in the Great Place.”
More soldiers from 2nd Brigade are expected to return to Fort Hood over the next few weeks. More than 3,000 soldiers with the brigade deployed last year, and more than half are already home.
Corinne Lincoln-Pinheiro | Herald