Bahrain -- Brig. Gen. John Epperly, 29th Infantry Division Deputy Commander, visited Soldiers from the 43rd Air Defense Artillery Regiment and the 12th Cavalry Regiment March 26, 2017, in Bahrain as part of an Operation Spartan Shield battlefield circulation. Soldiers from air defense and support elements briefed Epperly on their mission and their area of operations. Epperly presented Soldiers with coins of excellence for a job well done.
Military coins are traditionally given by senior leaders as recognition for performance and excellence.
Epperly received strategic capabilities overview briefings of Patriot missile systems that support Operation Spartan Shield in Bahrain. Soldiers used sand tables to aid in their demonstration of the site layout and capabilities of their respective areas. Soldiers expressed that it was encouraging to have division leadership coming to see their operating environment and learn about the work that they do.
"It was a very eye-opening experience," said Billy Kong, radio telephone operator for Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment. "A lower enlisted Soldier like me never gets the opportunity to brief someone like a general. I appreciated the chance to stand out and represent my company to a higher ranking officer."
Capt. Kellen Petersen, commander of Charlie Co., expressed how much of an honor it was to host Epperly at Patriot Site Five, noting how important it is to provide leadership with the opportunity to see exactly what he and his Soldiers are doing in their area of operations.
"I personally appreciated his down-to-earth approach speaking to us," said Petersen. "His genuine interest in the challenges we face, and his trust that we are diligently working to maintain readiness and improve the site gives me confidence that should the need arise, General Epperly would gladly take action on our behalf."