Soldiers assigned to 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team “Raider,” 3rd Infantry Division, uncased their colors August 3, 2021, on Fort Stewart, Georgia.
The ceremony was held to mark the official redeployment of the brigade—known as the Battle Axe of 3rd ID—after a nine-month rotation to the Republic of Korea. The Raider Brigade deployed in October 2020 as one of the Army’s first units to conduct large-scale training operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Col. Trent Upton, commander of the Raider Brigade, led the ceremony.
“From both World Wars, to Korea, to the Global War on Terrorism, we stand on the shoulders of giants,” said Upton. “A history and lineage of courage, selflessness, and honor that we have upheld on our most recent mission, and to which we have added yet another chapter.”
The deployment itself marked a historic return of 3rd ID Soldiers to the Republic of Korea for only the second time since the end of the Korean War.
During the deployment, Raider Soldiers worked alongside their Korean allies conducting multi-echelon training events, sharing each other's cultures, and strengthening the U.S.-Korean alliance.
“As the first BCT in the Army to complete its train up, deploy, and operate in a COVID-19 environment, Raider outpaced others, setting multiple rotational readiness records,” said Upton.
Upton said that the success of the Raider Brigade’s was shouldered by the Soldiers within its ranks and lauded the efforts of every individual in the organization. He also recognized that the Soldiers would not have been successful had it not been for the support of their families and friends.
“You all helped prevent regional aggression, maintained exceptional readiness and worked together with our ROK Army partners for the prosperity of the region,” said Maj. Gen. Charles D. Costanza, commanding general of 3rd ID.
Costanza went on to thank the Raider Soldiers for their hard work during their deployment and thanked the Raider Families for their continued support.
“Your journey was part of your history as a 3rd Infantry Division Soldier,” said Costanza. “You walked the same path as some of the first Dogface Soldiers who also said “Raiders First” and stood against the Chinese onslaught across the Korean Peninsula. You now share a chapter in our Division’s legacy. A legacy that is bigger than you or I, where we share a history of ordinary men and women rising to the occasion to do extraordinary things. You should be proud of what you’ve accomplished and we’re very glad to have you back.”
As the Raiders continue to reintegrate and get back to life at home, they will continue to stay ready to answer their Nation’s call.
“We are Raiders first for a reason,” said Upton. “We are the Battle Axe of 3rd ID.”