Army

October 4, 2013

201st MI Battalion returns from Afghanistan

Tags:
Gregory Ripps
470th Military Intelligence Brigade Public Affairs

Col. Timothy Chafos (center), 470th Military Intelligence Brigade commander, shakes hands with Lt. Col. Joe Barber, 201st MI Battalion commander, as he disembarks from an aircraft on Kelly Field at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland Air Force Base, Sept. 21. Barber and more than 100 Soldiers of the battalion returned to U.S. soil here after a year-long deployment to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. Command Sgt. Maj. William Manchester (left) waits his turn to welcome Barber and the troops.

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas – Soldiers of the 201st Military Intelligence Battalion returned to San Antonio late on the night of Sept. 21 after a year supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

The more than 100 Soldiers that made up the main body landed at Kelly Field aboard a chartered airliner after a 24-hour delay and a total of 30 hours in the air. Before they could board buses for Fort Sam Houston, the Soldiers had to take care of some paperwork and hear some briefings.

Meanwhile, excitement was building inside the post teen center where family and friends were anxiously waiting for as long as three hours for their Soldiers to arrive. As the Soldiers filed into the building to take their places in formation, the bleachers erupted in boisterous cheers and thunderous applause.

After Lt. Col. Joe Barber, the battalion commander, and Col. Timothy Chafos, 470th MI Brigade commander, exchanged salutes, Chafos made his welcoming comments. He said the battalion’s accomplishment of its intelligence mission “contributed to the protection of coalition and U.S. forces” and to “taking enemies of the United States off the battlefield.”

“It was a successful deployment and an overly successful mission,” Chafos said.
The brigade commander also commended the families for their support of their Soldiers.

“Honor that contribution with an effective reintegration,” he urged. “Take time to get together and get to know each other again.”

A Soldier of the 201st Military Intelligence Battalion receives a warm embrace at the teen activity center on Fort Sam Houston. He and more than 100 other members of his unit were welcomed by family and friends after returning Sept. 21 from a year-long deployment to Afghanistan.

Barber and Command Sgt. Maj. Joseph Williams uncased the battalion’s colors, symbolizing the official return of the battalion to Joint Base San Antonio. The ceremony completed, Barber gave the order, “Dismissed!” With that, the bleachers emptied as families rushed to embrace their Soldiers.

“Until I walked in here, everything else was just waiting,” said Sgt. Jason Birmendiz, who was greeted by his wife, Veronica, and three children. He said this had been his first deployment to Afghanistan but that he had previously deployed to Iraq twice with another unit.

His wife said the joyful feeling of having her husband home was “something I can’t explain.”

Sgt. Samuel Poindexter probably had more people gathered around him than anyone. “Mom, Dad, girl friend, sister, brother-in-law, nieces and nephews are all here,” he said as they all took turns hugging him.

Some Soldiers, unfortunately, didn’t have family there to greet them.

“My family is out of state,” said Sgt. Oscar Marroquin. “They couldn’t make it.”

A single Soldier who had just completed his second deployment to Afghanistan with the 201st MI Battalion, Marroquin said he was going to see his mother and father as soon as he could.

“I’m looking forward to a home-cooked meal,” he said, expressing a common sentiment.

“I’ll know I’m home when I taste my wife’s pot-roast,” said Warrant Officer 2 John Flores.

Barber noted that every Soldier who had deployed in his battalion returned safe and sound.

“We had a few ‘medicals’ but no severe injuries,” the battalion commander said. “That’s another indicator of a successful mission.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Army IMCOM photo by Amanda S. Rodriguez

Civilian mentor program shapes Army installation management’s future

U.S. Army IMCOM photo by Amanda S. Rodriguez U.S. Army Installation Management Command mentors and mentees work on teambuilding skills, building a block tower in total silience, during the IMCOM Headquarters Centralized Mentori...
 
 
DoD

DFAS reminds DoD employees to review tax withholdings

The Defense Finance and Accounting Service gave U.S. Department of Defense employees a friendly reminder to review withholdings from their paycheck, in an email last week. If a large tax refund was received or you owed a large amount in taxes during the recent tax season, you may need to look over your federal and...
 
 

Odierno: Information, instability travel at similar speeds

ASPEN, Colo. – As the world has become more interconnected and information travels faster than ever before, it also has become more unpredictable and dangerous, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno said here last night. “People now understand more about what other people might have, what they might want, how much control they want...
 

 
Gabrielle Kuholski

Post children attend Vacation Bible School week

Gabrielle Kuholski Pictured with the microphone, Colleen Sherod, 20, Vacation Bible School volunteer, emcees a review of the week’s religious lessons as VBS students hold up posters of their “Bible buddies.” The activity ...
 
 
Maranda Flynn

Seifert School-Age Center offers fun for kids, piece-of-mind for parents

Maranda Flynn Selene Ferro, 9, Jaliah Eldridge, 7, and Malachi Bergstrom, 7, build a puzzle train city in the creative play area of the first through third grade room at the Seifert School-Age Center. Creative play allows child...
 
 

Coronado National Forest fire crew assists with Oregon firefighting efforts

TUCSON, Ariz. – An initial attack firefighting crew from the Coronado National Forest has been assigned to firefighting duties on the Logging Unit Fires north of Warm Springs, Oregon. Coronado Crew 5 was ordered as a firefighting resource on July 16, 2014. The crew departed July 17, arriving at the fires on July 18. Crew...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin