Waking up to a cool brisk wind on the eastern plains of Europe, U.S. Army Capt. Jonathan Day starts his day conducting routine checks on his air defense equipment while deployed to southeastern Poland. However, this March morning was different for Capt. Day because one of his Soldiers serving alongside him decided to raise his right-hand to continue to serve his nation in uniform.
This Soldier is U.S. Army Sgt. Isaiah Cosme. On March 20, Cosme agreed to continue his service to our nation by raising his right hand with the United States flag behind him and reciting the re-enlistment oath.
The two Soldiers hail from the great state of Maine, famously known for its lobster rolls.
The two Paratroopers are assigned to 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, based out of Fort Bragg, N.C., which is currently deployed to Poland. Historically, their unit was one of the first to complete four combat jumps into Europe during WWII. This is the unit’s first time back in Europe since 1945 as they support the strength and reassurance of the NATO alliance.
Re-enlistment ceremonies are one of the longest lasting traditions of the Army. On this day, unlike others, it became a personal historical one for Cosme. He was given the opportunity to host his re-enlistment ceremony in another country and aboard a U.S. Army Chinook helicopter. These ceremonies are important because it symbolizes the individual Soldier’s purpose and service to their nation.
Cosme is a native of Westbrook, Maine and graduated from Westbrook High School Class of 2016. He is the son of Miguel Cosme and is married to Kristen, with a daughter named Vivian. His job in the Army is a forward observer for the unit.
“I joined the U.S. Army simply because I am able bodied. I felt that it would be selfish not to join and do my part for my country,” said Cosme when asked why he joined the Army. “The decision I made at the age of 17 was one of the best decisions I have made in my life. Looking back, I wouldn’t change the path I took. The military has helped me find myself and become the man I am today.”
Day is a native of Augusta, Maine and a graduate of Cony High School Class of 2010. He is a graduate of the Citadel Military College of South Carolina Class of 2014 where he earned his military commission as a U.S. Army officer. He is the son of Patricia Day, and he is married to Whitney Day and a father of two children. A track star in his own right, he has taken his talents to the Army as an air defense officer.
Day is responsible for the air defense program and counter-unmanned aerial system (UAS) program with 40 Soldiers under his charge. His team provides protection against small UAS, fixed-wing aircraft, and rotary-wing aircraft, in order to defend key infrastructure and personnel. They employ multiple mounted and dismounted air defense systems to defeat a wide array of air-based threats.
“I have wanted to join the military and become a Paratrooper since I was 6 years old. I was fond of history and the military at a young age and continuously wanted to learn as much as I could. My grandfather would spent hours during my summer vacations talking about WW2 history which sparked my interest and continues to this day,” said Day. Day also stated that this experience has prepared him to assume command of E Battery, 3d Battalion, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment (Airborne) this summer.
Both soldiers, along with other Maine Hometown Heroes, continue to make history, contributing to the overall success of the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, the 82nd Airborne Division and the Army. Our nation’s best and brightest continue to serve with humility and resiliency seeking to provide the world with the best of themselves.