By Story and photos by Spc. Jessica LuhrsOctober 9, 2010
Contingency Operating Site Warrior, Kirkuk, Iraq - Sixty three Soldiers of the 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, from Fort Stewart, Ga., took part in the largest reenlistment ceremony in 1-30th Inf. History. Held Oct. 6 at Contingency Operating Site Warrior, in Kirkuk, Iraq, the reenlistment had a special feel for the "Battle Boars" that went beyond the numbers.
"Today's ceremony is special for a lot of reasons," said Lt. Col. Daniel Cormier, 1-30th Inf. commander. "First, we have 63 Battle Boar Soldiers reenlisting today, the largest reenlistment in 1-30th Inf. history. Second, today we honor the service of these Soldiers. All of them are veterans. They are Men and Women who joined an Army at war. Who chose the harder path of service, knowing nothing ever gets done by just talking about it. Veterans like this are proven; they are courageous, disciplined and motivated to be the guardians of our nation and way of life.
"It is an honor to reenlist such a remarkable group of Soldiers who have helped to make our battalion great," he finished before standing in front of the formation of his Soldiers and reenlisting them.
The Soldiers who participated in the ceremony said they were also honored to be a part of the historic reenlistment.
"I feel honored to have been a part of this ceremony and to be able to reenlist with the people I have been deployed with for a year," said Spc. Rickie Doda, a mechanic who has been a "Battle Boar" since joining the military five years ago.
Specialist Doda, a native of Wichita Falls, Texas, reenlisted for the first time and hopes to follow in his grandfather's footsteps by making a career out of the military. His grandfather is a retired Army command sergeant major.
"I enjoy serving my country; there is no better feeling than looking at a flag and knowing that I defend it daily," Spc. Doda said. "The flag is why I want to reenlist and why I will be staying in the military for 20 years or more."
Sergeant First Class Chris Gardner, the "Battle Boar" reenlistment noncommissioned officer who made the ceremony possible, said the ceremony marked a great day.
"Today was a great day for this battalion, 3rd Infantry Division and the Soldiers who reenlisted," said Sgt. 1st Class Gardner. "The ceremony will not be forgotten by the Soldiers who participated."