FORT BLISS, Texas-- The evolution of Fort Bliss and the Army continued with the activation ceremony of the 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division "Bulldogs", held at the Fort Bliss Museum and Study Center, July 2.

The 3rd IBCT, 1st AD was officially welcomed to Fort Bliss by the uncasing of the brigade and battalion colors. Additionally, a procession of Soldiers presented yellow roses to the spouses of the command.

Maj. Gen. Howard B. Bromberg, Fort Bliss commanding general's opening remarks hinted how befitting the title of "Bulldog" was for the Soldiers of 3rd IBCT, 1st AD.

"[Bulldogs] are tough, loyal, and dedicated. It also fits that a bulldog's built like a rock; it's a powerhouse all in itself. And there's no question that the soldiers standing behind these leaders today are a powerhouse, and we know they'll get the job done, and they'll get it done to standard," said Bromberg.

Bromberg recognized the great historical importance of the 1st Armored Division, which has been present in some form in every major American conflict since World War II, he also stressed the transition of the Army to smaller, modular units or light infantry brigade combat teams, to coincide with needs of the modern battlefield.

The activation of 3rd IBCT, 1st AD marks the first brigade in the division's history to be a light infantry unit.

"We will not inherit the tanks and armored personnel carriers and the methods of our predecessors, we will have to build something new. And we will build it in a new home. And we will build it using new methods, in a new war," said Col. Christopher Cavoli, 3rd IBCT, 1st AD commanding officer.

At full strength, the 3rd IBCT, 1st AD will have more than 3,400 Soldiers about half bringing with them spouses and families, further evidence of the growth of Fort Bliss and El Paso. It will also mean less time deployed for the troops.

"Increasing the number of brigades today, will mean more time at home eventually for our Soldiers at home between deployments; which means additional time with their families and loved ones and we know that is the uppermost importance in everyone's mind as we continue to fight in this campaign," said Bromberg.

Over the next six months, the Bulldog brigade will be focused on individual level training and fielding of new equipment.

"Today is the culmination of a lot of hard work over the last seven months to get to this point and yet it is the really beginning," said Major Brian J. Harthorn, 3rd IBCT, 1st AD executive officer.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16