2nd Medical Brigade
The 2nd Medical Brigade has responsibility for 6,000 medical personnel in the Western US and the Pacific.
The 2nd Medical Brigade had an opportunity to practice the deployment and redeployment on a small scale and put it to use in 1998. Two combat support hospitals backed by supporting units deployed to the remote training site in June 1998 for the multinational-joint-service-training exercise dubbed Wild Boar at Fort Hunter Liggett, Calif. In addition an Army Reserve general hospital and a field hospital were deployed to Camp Parks, Dublin, Calif., as part of the exercise. Army transporters moved equipment by truck and boat from home station to desolate training areas. The exercise tested the field deployment and operations of four Army hospitals. Soldiers assigned to the 143rd Transportation Command, based in Orlando, Fla., and 32nd Transportation Group (Composite) based in Tampa, Fla., coordinated the deployment and redeployment of all Wild Boar hospital personnel and equipment from home station to the field and back again.
Approximately 170 veterans, and their families, were remembered during the East Bay Stand Down, an outreach program held Sept. 30-Oct. 3, 1999. Stand Down is a term used during war to describe the practice of removing troops from the field and taking care of their basic needs in a safe area. These events have proved to be very effective in breaking the homeless cycle among veterans and their families. As many as 35 percent of the participants go on to a more productive and successful life after attending the events. In the nine counties in the San Francisco Bay Area, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimates there are 7,000 needy or homeless veterans. In the Northern California area, estimates are as high as 15,000.
Nestled amongst the hills where soldiers train, drab green army tents offered shelter and assistance to needy veterans. The homeless veterans were given medical and dental care, employment and benefits counseling, clean clothing, showers, food, and a safe place to rest their weary bodies. Medical services rendered included free eye examinations, eye glasses, dental screening, and flu and tetanus shots. "Tent City" was collectively built by Army reservists and staff from Parks' RTS-Medical, Parks' 319th Signal Battalion, and the 2nd Medical Brigade.
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