FORT BLISS, Texas - Members of the 4th Battalion, 27th Field Artillery Regiment conducted an activation and assumption of command ceremony for C Battery, Tuesday, to increase the combat power of the battalion and 1st Armored Division Artillery (DIVARTY).

As the 1st Armored Division continues to develop and strengthen its warfighting capabilities to meet ever evolving threats to our national security, few things bring more lethality to the battle field than the steel rain provided by DIVARTY, and more cannon crews mean more combat power.

The addition of C Battery to 4-27 FA brings combat strength back to levels not seen since the height of combat action in the War on Terror in 2009. As 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division, expanded its force with the addition of a battalion, it became necessary for 4-27 FA to expand as well.

"We are in direct support to 2nd Brigade, in order to keep up with an additional battalion of armor we had to increase our howitzer strength and that is what adding Charlie Battery has allowed us to do," said Lt. Col. Brandon C. Anderson, battalion commander of 4th Battalion, 27th Field Artillery Regiment.

With the addition of C Battery, 4-27 FA goes from two batteries of eight guns each to three batteries of six guns each, a net increase of two howitzers that represents a significant increase in combat power, according to Anderson. He is also very confident in the leadership taking charge of C Battery.

As the C Battery commander Capt. Daniel J. Self has many challenges ahead, standing up a new battery is no easy task and with mission requirements already upon them, they are aggressively meeting their training goals.

"The opportunity to stand up a battery, or any organization, and activate it only comes about once in a lifetime," said Anderson. [Self] has taken it and embraced it. He's phenomenal.

"Through his connections with 3rd brigade and his ingenuity, we have been able to stand up this battery. We couldn't have done it without him."

"The first big challenge we are going to face is we have to get certified through our artillery table six and our platoon live fires," said Self.

This training involves months of preparation and planning as well as firing live artillery in arduous realistic training environments. Training fresh recruits from basic and job training posts in their first unit assignment also presents challenges for the new unit commander, but he will not face them alone as his battery first sergeant, 1st Sgt. Santiago Cendejas, stands ready to mold fresh recruits into seasoned and ready war fighters.

"The challenge of teaching and mentoring new Soldiers into becoming artillerymen and actually shooting artillery fire is what I look forward to most," said Cendejas. "It is awesome starting something from scratch and an honor and a challenge that I'm excited to do."