VILSECK, Germany – While some Soldiers of the 2d Cavalry Regiment packed their bags and checked their vehicles one last time before departing to Dragoon Ready 21, others stood in line to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Hundreds of Soldiers volunteered to receive the vaccination April 8, 2021 even though they were scheduled to depart hours later.
Dragoon Ready 21, an exercise at the Hohenfels Training Area, Germany, trains 2CR on defense tasks, military planning and multinational interoperability with units from the United Kingdom and France.
The regiment already emplaced extensive COVID mitigation measures prior to Dragoon Ready including multiple tests, screenings and a restriction of movement but saw the vaccine as an opportunity it could not deny.
“Once we heard about the vaccines arriving, we started working on a plan to get them to the Soldiers as soon as possible,” said Maj. Brad Reddick, the Regimental Surgeon.
Spc. Celia Aguirre, assigned to the Regimental Engineer Squadron, 2CR, was excited to receive the vaccination.
“I wanted to get the shot to protect my family when I start traveling,” said Aguirre.
When the vaccinated Soldiers return from Dragoon Ready 21, they will not have to worry about a second dose because they received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
“I completely trust the health service providers,” said Aguirre elaborating further on her decision to receive the vaccine.
The vaccine received approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency-use on Feb. 27, 2021 and only requires one dose.