My brigade, the 116th Brigade Combat Team, made up of units from Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah, New Jersey, and California, currently owns the record for re-enlisting soldiers, out of any unit, Active Duty, Reserve or National Guard, during Operation Iraqi Freedom. The 256th BCT, headquartered in Louisiana, held the previous record at over 400 soldiers re-enlisting in-country. The 116th BCT set out to beat that record with a goal of 500, and did on 14 September 2005, with BG Alan Gayheart, Commander of the 116th BCT, ceremonially swearing in SGT Seckel in front of a representative formation of other soldiers re-affirming their commitment to continue to stand ready to protect freedom.
I'm in there somewhere, third row from the back, right-center of the photo. Even I couldn't find myself.
You will notice the photo is labeled "500th Re-Enlistment". As of right now, the 116th BCT has had 733 soldiers sign new 3 or 6 year contracts.
I venture to say that this is a huge testament to the will of the army. Not the Army, the organization, but the army, the men and women who wear the uniform, no matter what branch. Knowing the adversity faced in combat, and the need for the constant defense of our nation, and having already experienced hardship, loss, and separation, a momentus number are willing to continue to be counted among the willing.
OPEN POST COURTESY OF Mudville Gazette