FORT HOOD, Texas – As part of a weeklong focus remembering
the fallen, Division West soldiers stood in place of a
sister division, laying a wreath at the 4th Infantry
Division Memorial, May 20, 2013.
Statue of a kneeling soldier crafted by an Iraqi sculptor at
the 4th Infantry Division Memorial on Cameron Field near First Army
Division West headquarters at Fort Hood, Texas. Division West held a
Memorial Day Remembrance and wreath-laying ceremony at the memorial
in honor of 4th ID fallen soldiers. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt.
Four years ago the proud colors of the Ivy Division were
cased on Cameron Field as it moved from Fort Hood to Fort
Carson, Colo., and Division West, First Army arrived at Hood
to swap headquarters. Left on the grounds of Cameron Field
was a memorial, dedicated and rededicated four times in
honor of those who fell in battle under 4th Infantry's Task
Force Iron Horse.
“This Memorial Day we express a
profound gratitude for the acts of brave patriots who gave
the full measure so that we can live free,” said Maj. Gen.
Warren E. Phipps, Jr., Division West commanding general.
Citing the responsibility the division has to remember
all our nation's fallen, Phipps spoke of a particular
responsibility to pay respects to the soldiers, sailors,
airmen and Marines memorialized on the division's own
grounds – the men and women honored on the 4th ID memorial.
“We stand before this beautiful monument today to lay a
wreath of flowers as our act of respect and gracious
reverence to the 432 soldiers who served under the 4th
Infantry Division in Iraq,” said Phipps.
center of this monument stands a statue of a kneeling
soldier before the boots, rifle, helmet and dog-tags of his
fallen comrades,” added Phipps. “With him stands a young
girl, reaching out to touch the soldier.”
division began its weeklong focus with a run to remember May
17 here, with shadow runs occurring at the home of the
division's other brigades at Fort Bliss, Texas, Fort McCoy,
Wis., and Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.
kick off with a Run to Remember,” said Phipps, “I also want
each of you to reach out to families who have lost a loved
one to war, because this is now ‘our' Memorial Day.”
Following a motivating division run, a select group of
soldiers gave their testimonials to some of their fallen
comrades to a somber crowd of peers.
“I have the
distinct privilege of, each day, leading America's sons and
daughters. It also brings heartache knowing that the orders
I give could lead to the loss of one of America's finest,”
said Capt. Orlando Craig, a 1st Battalion, 395th Engineer
Regiment, 479th Field Artillery, Division West,
observer/controller trainer team chief.
were realized on March 22, 2007, after ordering Sgt. Freeman
Gardner to dismount his vehicle to provide security for some
of his fellow soldiers,” Craig added. “He was killed by an
IED blast in Baghdad, Iraq. Sgt. Gardner left many memories
With our nation bringing an 11-year
conflict to a close, Division West and her brigades will
participate in various engagements around the command. Units
will visit veteran's homes and participate in ceremonies at
veteran cemeteries. Soldiers and leaders are taking the time
to pay respects and homage to the fallen that paved the way
for today's modern military.
“We know all those who
have served in the past and have sacrificed. We know them
through the history books,” said Phipps. “Over the past 10
years, it has become so that it is no longer history books
we refer to but our own memories, and now it is personal.”
More photos available in frame below
By First Army Division West
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