FORT BLISS, Texas-- After six years and their relocation from Wiesbaden Army Airfield, Germany, to Fort Bliss, Texas, the 1st Armored Division cases its colors once again.
Soldiers from 1st Armored Division gathered on Fort Bliss, June 14 to case the 1st Armored Division, the 1st Armored Division Artillery and the 1st Armored Division Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion colors, in preparation for their deployment to Iraq.
The deployment colors casing ceremony is an Army tradition that symbolizes the movement of the division to a new theater of operation.
"We are often reminded of our history by our battle streamers," said Maj. Gen. Pat White, commanding general for 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss. "They illuminate the courage and sacrifice made to bring peace and guarantee the freedoms that we enjoy."
Approximately 400 Soldiers from 1st AD, DIVARTY and HHBN will deploy in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, where they will be responsible for mission command of coalition troops training, advising and assisting Iraqi Security Forces.
"The Soldiers of 1st AD are expertly trained professionals that make this tank division the best in the Army," White said. "They stand ready to fight and win in any campaign."
The 1st AD Headquarters will serve as the command element of the Combined Joint Forces Land Component Command in Iraq, replacing the 1st Infantry Division Headquarters, as their tour comes to a close.
"There has been a great deal of training and preparation over the past year," White said. "The 1st AD put in the work, took away lessons learned and generated processes and procedures that will ensure success during Operation Inherent Resolve."
This is also the first time in nearly eight years that the division colors were cased for an operational deployment in support of the global war on terrorism.
1st AD Headquarters deployed to Iraq in December of 2009 working the transition from a combat role, Operation Iraqi Freedom, to an advise and assist role, Operation New Dawn.
As Soldiers move forward on this new mission, be reminded that there is no change to Fort Bliss and the support it provides to the spouses and family members, White added.
"This is the premier installation in the United States Army," White said. "The programs here will take care of both the children and spouses that are left behind while their Soldier is forward deployed."
The deployment is expected to last nine months with Soldiers slated to return in the spring of next year.