Paratroopers reenlist under famed Baghdad landmark
April 28, 2009
BAGHDAD - Eighty-two paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division's, 3rd Brigade Combat Team raised their hands in defense of their nation during a reenlistment ceremony at Baghdad's Cross Sabers, April 23.
Paratroopers assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd BCT, 82nd Abn., Multi-National Division - Baghdad took a pledge to continue serving their country in uniform in the largest ceremony during the brigade's current deployment to Iraq.
"Thank you for raising your right hand in serve to your nation, you men and women are amazing," said Lt. Col. Dave Buckingham, commander of the 5th Sqdn., 73rd Cav. Regt. "The reason our squadron is so great is because of our young leaders, our great NCOs and our young officers. We owe all of our success to you."
Buckingham, along with the squadron's senior enlisted leader, Command Sgt. Maj. Cory Kroll, presided over the ceremony and led the paratroopers in the oath of military service.
Each member of the "Panther Recon" team had his or her personal reason to reenlist and all 82 paratroopers said their dedication to continue serving had a lot of meaning especially at such a historic site.
"The reason I reenlist is because I love this unit, want to continue serving my country and want to become a leader in this regiment," said Spc. Kyle Trujillo, of Sacramento, Calif. "This event is significant because the Cross Sabers is a historical site and for us to have a ceremony here is something I will remember for the rest of my life. "
Other senior leaders from the 3rd BCT and Multi-National Corps - Iraq were also in attendance and praise the paratroopers for their commitment to the United States and serving the American people.
The event was held on the two-year anniversary of one of the regiment's darkest days. On April 23, 2007 nine paratroopers were killed when a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device struck them while conducting combat operations in Al-Assad, Iraq.