FORT HOOD, Texas (Oct. 17, 2014) -- The Soldiers of the 36th Engineer Brigade cased their colors during a ceremony held at Cameron Field here, Wednesday, in preparation for their upcoming deployment to Liberia.
The ceremony is one of the final things the brigade will do before they deploy on their humanitarian mission, where they will be building hospitals to help Liberia combat the spread of the Ebola virus.
Col. Heath C. Roscoe, the commander of the 36th Engineer Brigade, said he's more than confident that the Soldiers of the 36th Engineers are more than up to the challenge of their mission.
"Our mission in Liberia is one of construction, and all of our subordinate units in this mission are also engineers," said Roscoe. "We're going over there to build Ebola treatment facilities and the life support units that are going to support the other U.S. forces that are coming over there."
Addressing the concerns of people who may have some hesitation about the brigade being sent over to Liberia, Roscoe said his troops are well trained and equipped for the mission at hand.
"Last week our Soldiers were engaged in training with their personal protective equipment, and I feel confident in our training and equipment to protect our Soldiers," said Roscoe.
Confidence is the one thing the Soldiers seem to have in abundance about their mission.
Command Sgt. Maj. Douglas S. Padgett, the senior enlisted advisor of the 36th Engineers, said the training they've had in preparation for this mission has been fantastic.
"About a year ago the brigade started a train up over the Soldier's individual skills, and then we moved on to the collective tasks," said Padgett. "I feel like everything we've done up to this point has led up to us being able to handle our current mission."
Padgett praised his Soldiers abilities and dedication to the Army as well as the brigade.
"We have the best Soldiers, the best training, and they're more than ready to do the mission that we've been tasked to do," said Padgett.
Echoing Padgett's view of the training, Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Rogers, the Equal Opportunity Representative for the brigade who is also deploying with the brigade, said he thinks the training is what really makes a difference for this mission.
"I think our training has been well thought out, well planned and well executed," said Rogers. "I think the leaders at all levels have put a lot of thought and care into the training that we've been through."
Rogers acknowledges there are risks involved with this mission, but believes he's received the training necessary.
"The odds of us coming into contact with a victim of the Ebola virus is relatively small, and we've got medical personnel coming with us that are trained to recognize and treat it."
Roscoe said his brigade surgeon and medics have all received training and will be there to help keep the Soldiers safe.
In addressing the family members and community members, Roscoe said the 36th Engineers are well trained and are going over there to construct medical facilities and if they do interact with an Ebola patient they're prepared.
For many this will be their first time deploying, but seasoned Soldier Rogers said this is a unique mission he knows he'll never forget.
"I believe that we're going to look back over this mission and know that we made a difference in the lives of people of Liberia and the World," Roscoe said.