ZAGAN, Poland -- Devil Soldiers join their Polish allies and local citizens to take part in a 20 year anniversary celebration to recognize Poland's accession to NATO in 1999, here, Mar. 8, 2019.
"We're very excited to be out here and show our support and how Poland's 20th anniversary is important to us," said Capt. Bradden Van Noy, brigade planner from 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. "They're welcoming us into the fold and inviting us to their celebrations and their events."
On display from the Devil brigade were the M1A2 Abrams battle tank, M2A3 Bradley fighting vehicle, 1151 HMMWV, as well as an M249 light machine gun, M-4 rifle, and M-17 pistol.
"We have some static displays and Soldiers here to give the local population the opportunity to come and talk to us and ask questions about our equipment and see a little bit of what the American military is about," said Van Noy.
The event was open to the public as approximately 1,000 locals were in attendance to visit and learn about the Polish and American militaries. Food and drinks were provided as well as entertainment from the Polish Army band, a concert from a local group, and face painting for the kids.
The Polish Army's 11th Armoured Cavalry Division had representatives on hand from the 17th Mechanized Brigade, 23rd Artillery Regiment, 4th Air Defense Regiment, 34th Armoured Cavalry Brigade, and 10th Armoured Cavalry Brigade.
"This is a good point to show the locals how our cooperation looks between the 1st ABCT and the 11th Armoured Cavalry Division," said Maj. Martin Markowski from the 11th Armoured Division Headquarters. "Usually civilians don't realize how the equipment looks, so this is a good opportunity to show them."
This celebration is just one example of how the rotational forces forge relationships with allies and partners to build a foundation of shared values, experiences and trust.
"This [event] is good to show the U.S. Soldiers and the Polish soldiers together," said Markowski. "That we are brothers in arms."