4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division
The mission of the 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division is to reset and retrain an Airborne Brigade Combat Team that is capable of conducting forced entry and full spectrum combat operations anywhere in the world. It was also to build, transform, train, deploy, and employ an Airborne Brigade Combat Team that was capable of conducting forcible entry and full spectrum operations anywhere in the world. The Brigade initially consisted of a Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 4th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 1-501st Infantry, 3-509th Infantry, 1-40th Cavalry, 2-377th Field Artillery, and 167th Brigade Support Battalion. All units were Airborne qualified. In 2006, the 167th Brigade Support Battalion was reflagged as the 725th Brigade Support Battalion.
The 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division was part of United States Army Alaska (USARAK) at Fort Richardson. The 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team was stood up in an activaiton ceremony on 14 July 2005.
As part of its largest restructuring since World War II, the Army announced its plan for stationing its active component modular Brigade Combat Teams on 27 July 2005. The plan included new organizations being formed and other units being returned from overseas locations. The return of the overseas units added up to 50,000 Soldiers and 150,000 family members being brought back to bases in the United States. In the end state, the number of active modular BCTs was expected to increase from 33 to 43, enhancing the active Army's combat power by 30 percent.
Fort Richardson's fast growth had led to a shortage of barracks space for single soldiers assigned to Alaska, a situation the Army was addressing with temporary modular structures while new buildings were being constructed. Although Fort Richardson saw the departure of the approximately 700 Soldiers who made up the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment in 2005, the post had a net gain of 2,000 Soldiers by the fall of 2005.
4-23rd Infantry joined the rest of the 172nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Fort Wainwright when they returned from their deployment to Operation Iraqi Freedom. The new personnel would be part of the 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division. The entire airborne Brigade was stationed at Fort Richardson.
The 1st Battalion (Airborne), 501st Infantry, already at Fort Richardson, was the nucleus for the 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, which by 2006 was expected to encompass more than 3,500 Soldiers. To accommodate this influx of new personnel, Fort Richardson would have the first of 129 temporary modular barracks and offices in place by this fall. Seventy-six of the buildings, which were expected to be in use up to 7 years, would be for 6-Soldier barracks.
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