Soldiers from 1st Brigade Combat Team return home this week
FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. (CLARKSVILLENOW) – Nearly 100 soldiers assigned to 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team “Bastogne”, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), will return from a historic mission in Cameroon this week, according to Fort Campbell Public Affairs. The ceremony is scheduled for Friday, Apr.
28. These “Red Currahee” soldiers made up the majority of Task Force Toccoa, deployed to northern Cameroon between January-April, 2017.
This group was the second iteration of 101st Soldiers to participate in this mission, which began in September 2016, and marked the first conventional elements of the 101st Airborne in the history of the division to deploy to Cameroon. TF Toccoa’s mission was to conduct the Base Operations Security – Infrastructure mission at Contingency Location (CL) Garoua, Cameroon in order to provide force protection and enhance United States government strategic relationships, access, and influence in the area. TF Toccoa worked with the U.S.
State Department, Cameroonian Air Force, non-government organizations and host nation partners to expand positive relationships and enable security in the region. In addition they worked closely with U.S. Army Civil Affairs teams to conduct outreach to the local communities.
Highlights include: delivering shipments of toys and school supplies to a local orphanage; visiting local schools to donate supplies and help improve conditions; conducting an information exchange with a Cameroonian military health clinic; and meetings with local leaders such as the governor, mayor, and religious and military leaders. In addition to these projects, the “Red Currahee” Soldiers continued to train and prepare, maintaining their mission readiness. One memorable and unique training event was the Soldiers’ participation in testing for the Cameroon Commando Badge, a multi-event badge comparable to the U.S.
Army’s Expert Infantry Badge. The assessment consisted of 22 tasks covering weapons, medical and patrolling lanes. Soldiers were also required to complete a physical fitness test, a 7.5 mile endurance event and a packing list layout.
Ultimately, 19 Baker Company Soldiers passed all tasks and earned the Cameroonian badge in a final ceremony. The 1st BCT is the Regionally Aligned Force supporting U.S. Army Africa (USARAF) events and exercises across the African continent this year.
USARAF brings the Army team to assist our partners in building ready forces and operating as part of a multi-national coalition. The 1st BCT Soldiers will deploy to over 20 African countries this year to support training events, coalition exercises and other missions. These “Bastogne” Soldiers will help improve readiness, promote interoperability, build capacity and strengthen partner relationships on the continent of Africa.
The ceremony is scheduled for Friday, Apr.