Ahead of its deployment to Kuwait,
the 1st Infantry Division’s 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team conducted a ceremony
June 18 on Fort Riley in which leaders cased the brigade colors, inactivated the
Special Troops Battalion and reflagged the 1st Engineer Battalion to the 1st
Brigade Engineer Battalion.
Several thousand Soldiers from
the brigade will deploy for nine months in support of Operation Spartan Shield.
A group of Soldiers departed the same day as the casing and inactivation
Meanwhile, the Soldiers of the
inactivating STB, which was led by Lt. Col. Brann G. Calvetti, will bolster the
ranks of the new 1st Bde. Eng. Bn. under the command of Lt. Col. Jason
“Over the past 22 months under
the phenomenal leadership of Brann Calvetti, and over the past year following my
arrival to this great division and community, the ‘Defiant’ battalion has
embodied both the imperatives I’ve set forth, and continued to live by and
strengthened the division colors as contained by (Maj.) Gen. (Paul E.) Funk’s vision,”
said Col. John Reynolds, 1st ABCT commander. “In training, the STB battalion Soldiers
have firmly demonstrated their adaptability, their competence and their reliability,
setting the standard across the division on technical expertise.”
Reynolds described the STB,
or Defiant battalion, as a great organization led by a great leader who cared
for his Soldiers at all times.
With his unit deactivated, Calvetti
will next serve at the Pentagon as part of the Directorate of Command, Control,
Communications and Computers/Cyber.
“As part of my final act of
command, I would be remiss if I didn’t take the opportunity to publicly
recognize and give thanks to the Soldiers I have had the honor and privilege to
lead and serve alongside these past two years,” Calvetti said. “Thank you for
your service and for what you and your families sacrifice and do every day in
support of our Army and this great nation. You have truly proven that you are
brave, responsible and on point.”
Units assigned to the STB moved
under the 1st Bde. Eng. Bn., part of the Army’s larger restructuring plan. It will
not result in a decrease of 1st ABCT troops.
The 1st Bde. Eng. Bn. was part
of the “Big Red One” beginning with World War I, but realigned in late 2007
under the 555th Engineer Brigade based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord,
The battalion’s Soldiers put
1st Inf. Div. patches back on their left shoulders in January as the “Diehard”
battalion returned to the 1st ABCT.
“I think it’s very fitting that
the Army’s oldest and most decorated engineer battalion rejoins the oldest
brigade combat team and the oldest division,” said Taliaferro. “There are many
Diehard veterans out there that were ecstatic to see the ‘Big Red One’ back on
Taliaferro welcomed the former
STB Soldiers into his ranks, challenging them to help write a history of which future
generations will be proud.
“We’re extremely glad to have you and the tremendous capabilities
you bring to the fight,” he said.