90th Sustainment Brigade cases colors, heads home
February 26, 2010
JOINT BASE BALAD, Iraq - The 90th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) held a casing ceremony Feb. 19 outside the brigade headquarters building, to retire the brigade's colors for its re-deployment from Iraq.
Even though the 90th Sust. Bde., out of Little Rock, Ark., deployment was cut down to five months, unit leaders praised its success. In a speech, Col. Gary L. Spry, commander of the 90th Sust.Bde. and a Fishers, Ind., native, said the unit's Soldiers can be proud of what they did in Iraq.
"You were here and you did your part," said Spry. "Today, we begin the long journey home and reintegrate with family and friends."
Lt. Col. Terry L. DeWitt, the 90th Sust. Bde. deputy commander and Arkadelphia, Ark., native, said the 90th's mission was to provide logistical support for Warfighters in their area of operations.
"We supplied food, ammunition, medical supplies and fuel to our customers, and we made sure they received everything they needed," he said.
DeWitt said this was a newly formed unit and a lot of the Soldiers learned for the first time how logistics operated in a combat zone with an ESC.
DeWitt also praised the support received from their family readiness group at home.
"They did an awesome job keeping us informed on what's going on at the home front," DeWitt said. "They were supportive and involved in a lot of the things we did."
Sgt. Walter E. Walker II, a senior intelligence analyst with the 90th Sust. Bde. and a Cabot, Ark., native, said the unit's Soldiers overcame obstacles at the beginning of the deployment.
"When I got to the unit, right before the deployment, there really wasn't an S2 section, it was just me," he said. "I found some noncommissioned officers and officers to better equip us to do our mission and do it effectively."
Walker said he was glad to help the 90th accomplish their mission.
"I'm happy that I could put out some (intelligence) that could help the troops outside the wire and possibly save lives," he said.
Command Sgt. Maj. David W. Day, the senior enlisted adviser with the 90th Special Troops Battalion, 90th Sust. Bde., 13th ESC and a Little Rock, Ark., native, said they had to cross-train a number of Soldiers in order to complete the mission.
"We had to overcome a few things, the biggest one being not knowing each other, but we gelled as a team," he said. "We put our egos aside, rolled up our sleeves and did what needed to be done."
Day said he was happy the brigade completed its mission with a positive attitude.
"We had Soldiers from 42 states and every one of them was an asset to the 90th," said Day. "I hate to see them go."
In his farewell speech to the 90th Sust. Bde., Brig. Gen. Paul L. Wentz, commanding general of the 13th ESC and a Mansfield, Ohio, native, said he was impressed at the outstanding job the 90th did at JBB.
"Make no doubt about it, you are a part of history," said Wentz. "You provided world class sustainment support and performed the mission with quiet professionalism. This brigade has done it all with pride and professionalism."