Last vehicle to depart Iraq headed for 1st Cavalry Division Museum
By David Ruderman, 402nd Army Field Support Brigade Public AffairsMarch 7, 2012
CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait (March 7, 2012) -- The last U.S. Army vehicle to drive out of Iraq in December 2011 is on the road again and heading for a rendezvous with history.
The Caiman Plus mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle, or MRAP, which exited Iraq at the Khabari Crossing Dec. 18, 2011, with Company C, 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, will be traveling into the historical record at the 1st CavalryDivision Museum at Fort Hood, Texas.
"The last vehicle in Iraq represents our nation's efforts over the past nine years to bring freedom to the Iraqi people," said Col. John S. Laskodi, 402nd Army Field Support Brigade commander.
While processing thousands of vehicles and tons of equipment withdrawn from Iraq as part of Operation New Dawn, the brigade took the initiative to preserve the vehicle, making inquiries through Third Army (U.S. Army Central) as to whether there was an interest in preserving the MRAP for its historical value, said Laskodi.
Direction came back through U.S. Army Forces Command to the 402nd advising them to prepare the Caiman for shipment to the 1st Cavalry Division Museum at Fort Hood, Texas, he said.
The MRAP will be loaded for shipment by sea in mid-March and should arrive in Texas about a month later, said Capt. Joseph Wanat, operations officer with the 1173rd Deployment Distribution Support Battalion at the Port of Ash Shuaiba, Kuwait.
"The MRAP didn't exist at the beginning of the war, but has become a symbol of the incredible adaptiveness of the American military and our ability to field the best equipment to our Army," Laskodi said.
"Preserving this vehicle will remind future generations of the hundreds of thousands of Soldiers who served valiantly over the course of this war, the sacrifices of their families back at home and those who were wounded or killed to bring peace," he said.