FORT CARSON, Colorado -- The colors of 2nd Space Battalion, 1st Space Brigade, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command, were unfurled for the first time during an activation ceremony Oct. 16 here.

Col. Richard Zellmann, 1st Space Brigade commander, passed the colors to Lt. Col. Erikk Hurtt entrusting him to care for and lead the unit as its first battalion commander.

During his remarks, Zellmann recognized the members of the Army's only U.S. Army Reserve Space Battalion.

"The Soldiers of the 2nd Space Battalion exist to preserve our access to the space domain, and, when challenged, be able to articulate the effects from current operations to the decision-making process. The 2nd Space Battalion gives the Army depth," said Zellmann.

Because of their expertise in space planning and space operations, Soldiers from this battalion are already deployed.

"Today is a historic day for space operations in the Army," Zellmann said. "Activations of Army battalions are infrequent. Creation of new battalions with new colors is very rare. You could argue the 2nd Space Battalion starts today with a clean slate: no lineage. I'd argue the Soldiers serving in 3rd, 5th, and 8th Space companies are the lineage of the 2nd Space Battalion.

Zellmann said Hurtt is the right Soldier for the job of leading this new battalion. He has served in the command as both an operator and a planner, and he is very familiar with all the missions of the battalion.

Addressing Hurtt, Zellmann said, "Erikk, today you have the privilege to command Army Soldiers. Lead them well, make them ready, build a positive command climate, and challenge these Soldiers to advance the mission. Always know that I have your back and that my staff stands by to help the 2nd Space Battalion be successful.

"The Soldiers of the 2nd Space Battalion are ready today," Zellmann said. "They are going to improve their battle position with every battle assembly, exercise and deployment. The Soldiers in formation today are pioneers. To all the Soldiers of 2nd Space Battalion: your contributions now will shape the future of space operations in the Army. We expect much from you because we know you will deliver."

Addressing the audience, Hurtt said he is honored to be the first commander of the amazing Soldiers of the 2nd Space Battalion.

"When the United States Army was first formed, there was one domain it had to deal with. It was the ground domain," said Hurtt. "Today, our military operates on the ground, on the seas, in the air, in space and in cyberspace. This makes for a very complex environment.

"The Soldiers of the 2nd Space Battalion will use their training and experience to leverage space, in support of commanders and troops at all levels," Hurtt continued. "To say we fight in space is not a correct characterization. We fight wherever the fight is, whether that is the space domain or using the medium of space to provide effects and support. It is these Soldiers' space training and expertise that will enable them to provide commanders space situational awareness, offensive and defensive space control, missile warning, satellite communications, remote sensing, navigation warfare and many other capabilities. The capabilities these Soldiers bring to the fight are unmatched by any nation in the world. We will bring these capabilities to bear whenever and wherever the nation calls.

"Whether it is securing the Homeland, helping our allies, providing support to civil agencies, or whatever the nation needs, Soldiers of the 2nd Space Battalion will use their expertise to ensure that the ultimate high ground will always remain secure for the United States and its allies," Hurtt concluded.