FORT CAVAZOS, Texas – 1st Cavalry Division's Pegasus Integration Troop held its first change of command during a ceremony on Cooper Field on June 30. The Troop bid farewell to Capt. Cesar Castellanos, while welcoming incoming troop commander Capt. Teresa Allen.
Pegasus was first created in October of 2021 to make Troopers and their families feel welcome and give Troopers the proper amount of time and guidance to settle issues such as housing, finance, or family care.
"What separates Pegasus from other companies is that we are not just taking care of Troopers within the Troop but also within different brigades," Allen said. "We integrate the families and the Troopers to make sure that they're taken care of before going to their units because many of them are new to the U.S. Army and may have hardships that they do not know how to rectify before going to their units."
The feedback from Troopers who have completed the integration course has been instrumental in giving Pegasus Troop the firepower it needs to ensure all Troopers arrive at their units financially and mentally stable.
"Some of those Troopers even spent two years without getting paid what they deserved, and as of right now, we have seen 18 million dollars in enlistment and re-enlistment bonuses secured for Troopers in the division since I've taken command." Capt. Cesar Castellanos, outgoing Pegasus Troop commander said.
Pegasus hasn't just had a positive impact throughout the division; according to Castellanos, installations throughout the army have shown interest in how the 1st Cavalry Division integrates its Troopers.
"We have received phone calls from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Fort Sam Houston, and Fort Riley inquiring about our program," Castellanos said. "And we were fundamental to developing 13 reception companies they want to establish across the force."
Capt. Castellanos's performance as the program's first commander has not gone unnoticed and received high praise from Lt. Col. Christopher Flores, Special Troops Battalion commander.
"Thank you for your leadership and tenacity to push through the challenges of commanding this unique and significant organization," Flores said. "You are an example of the leader we need in our Army."
With the integration of the 3d Cavalry Regiment, the number of Troopers completing the integration program increased up to 550 on average per month and more than 9,000 Troopers over the last 14 months have been integrated into the First Team.
As part of the division's goal to develop solid adaptive teams built on trust that began with the People First campaign, Pegasus will continue to be the foundation in which Troopers are welcomed into the 1st Cavalry Division and potentially the entire army. The First Team remains committed to improving and developing the integration program and sharing its successes with the rest of the force, ensuring that no matter what our nation's wars may be fought with weapons, they are also won by the people we care for.