By Mr. William B King (2nd Signal Brigade)September 9, 2017
ZAGAN, Poland -- U.S. Army Soldiers assigned to Charlie Company, 44th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, 2nd Theater Signal Brigade, are in Poland to provide communications and network support as regionally allocated forces deploy into and out of the European theater for Operation Atlantic Resolve.
The Signal Soldiers are enabling mission command for the reception, staging, onward movement and integration, or RSOI, process at several intermediate staging bases throughout Poland. During the next few months the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, or 3-4 ABCT, will move through Poland as it redeploys to Fort Carson, Colorado, and the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, or 2-1 ABCT, will deploy from Fort Riley, Kansas, to Poland before moving on to other locations in Europe.
1st Lt. Cye Heatherly, C Co, 44th Expeditionary Signal. Bn. executive officer, said the company has teams deployed to critical locations to support regionally allocated forces and the 16th Sustainment Brigade, 21st Theater Sustainment Command.
"The communications we provide are a critical component to successful mission command, thereby enabling the seamless transition of regionally allocated forces in the theater," Heatherly said.
He said the unit has a Single Shelter Switch and five Command Post Nodes to support up to about 350 users with voice, data, and video teleconference services.
Sgt. 1st Class James Martinez, the S-6 Communications and Information Management noncommissioned officer in charge assigned to 2nd Battalion, 70th Armor Regiment, 2-1 ABCT, said so far the unit has had a smooth transition onto the European network.
"Coming in and being brand new to the theater, the 44th (Expeditionary Signal Bn.) Soldiers have been very helpful and we greatly appreciate their assistance," Martinez said. "Communications is absolutely critical to our mission -- without communications all the other facets of our operations won't function efficiently or properly."
Communications has also proven critical for units redeploying from Europe back to the U.S. Maj. John Zdeb, the executive officer assigned to 1st Battalion, 66th Armor Regiment, 3-4 ABCT, emphasized the importance of distributed units being able to communicate great distances over the network.
"That is the primary means for us to communicate with our brigade headquarters which is in another country. Without that support there's no way we could do it," Zdeb said.
In addition to the RSOI mission, C Co., 44th Expeditionary Signal Bn. has teams in three other countries providing communications support to Operation Atlantic Resolve and exercise Bayonet Shield.
"I'm extremely proud of all our Soldiers deployed across Europe providing reliable communications and mission command to multiple brigades across the theater," Heatherly said.
2nd Theater Signal Brigade conducts Department of Defense Information Network operations to enable mission command in support of U.S. Army, Joint and multinational operations throughout the U.S. European Command and U.S. Africa Command areas of operation.