Strengthening Ties in Suwalki
1 / 5 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Soldiers of 4th Squadron, 2nd Calvary Regiment roll into town in Stryker military vehicles in the main square of Suwalki, Poland, June 4, as part of joint static display and civilian-military engagement. Citizens were able to meet Soldiers and see mi... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Strengthening Ties in Suwalki
2 / 5 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Spc. Marius Siauciunas, a native of Kaunus, Lithuania and gunner for 4th Squadron, 2nd Calvary Regiment, takes a photo with a young Polish girl in the main square of Suwalki, Poland, June 4, as part of joint static display and civilian-military engag... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Strengthening Ties in Suwalki
3 / 5 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Polish citizens gather in the main square of Suwalki, Poland, June 4, as part of joint static display and civilian-military engagement by the Polish army and the Soldiers of 4th Squadron, 2nd Calvary Regiment. Citizens were able to meet Soldiers and ... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Strengthening Ties in Suwalki
4 / 5 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Lt. Col. Deric Holbrook, commander of the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, stands with Polish senator Anna Maria Anders during a joint static display and civilian-military engagement by the Polish army and the Soldiers of 4th Squadron,... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
Strengthening Ties in Suwalki
5 / 5 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Soldiers of 4th Squadron, 2nd Calvary Regiment take a photo with a Polish citizens in the main square of Suwalki, Poland, June 4, as part of joint static display and civilian-military engagement. Citizens were able to meet Soldiers and see military e... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

SUWALKI, Poland-- On a sunny Saturday afternoon, U.S. Strykers rumbled down the cobble stone streets of Suwalki, Poland, June 4 and were greeted by a gathering crowd of Polish citizens.

Children waved U.S. flags and watched as Soldiers parked their military vehicles in the main square of Suwalki, while a youth dance team performed on a stage in the background. Brightly colored balloons decorated street fair stalls throwing a festive contrast to the military vehicles that sat in the square, giving families a balance of fun, colorful entertainment as well as education and history.

As part of the Suwalki celebration, prominent leaders in the community, including Polish senator Anna Maria Anders, spoke to local citizens. Anders has multiple familial ties to both the Polish and the U.S. Army.

"My father was General Anders, who was a legendary figure during the Second World War," said Anders. "He was the commander and chief at the Battle of Monte Cassino, which was won by the Polish and he was able to save the lives of about 120,000 people in Siberia, so my ties to the area and to the Army begin with my dad. I married a U.S. colonel; I met him in Italy, he was the Army attaché in Rome, and I now have a son who is a 2nd Lt. in the U.S. Army; his name is Robert Wladyslaw Costa."

During her speech, Anders thanked the Soldiers for their participation and for coming out to meet the people of Suwalki on such a beautiful day.

Lt. Col Deric Holbrook, the commander of the Field Artillery Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, was happy to have met Senator Anders.

"She is a wonderful woman representing her portion of Poland," said Holbrook. "Her background is amazing because her husband was a green beret in the U.S. Army and her son just started ranger school, so she has a very tight bond with Poland and the U.S.; it's great because that is what we are doing here today, we are building bonds between two great nations."

Holbrook underscored the importance of Soldiers getting to go out and meet local citizens.

"We're in Suwalki, Poland and we're doing a civil-military engagement with the Polish Army and elements of the 2nd Cav. Regt.," said Holbrook. "And we have about 2,000 people here building trust between our nations, allowing them to see our equipment and assuring the people of Poland that the U.S. stands strong with Poland and with NATO."

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