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3rd CAB Cases Colors

December 3, 2012

By Sgt. Luke Rollins, 3rd ID

HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, Ga. -- The 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade opened the next chapter in its history when it cased its colors, Nov. 30, during a ceremony at Hunter Army Airfield, Ga., in preparation for its upcoming deployment to Afghanistan.

Approximately 2,500 3rd CAB Soldiers are scheduled to deploy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, marking the fifth time the brigade has deployed overseas since Sept. 2001.

Colonel John Hort, commander-rear of the Third Infantry Division, presided over the ceremony. A formation of troops from the brigade's five battalions looked on as Col. Allan Pepin, 3rd CAB commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. James Snyder, tucked away the Marne Air standard. It will fly again when the brigade is firmly established in Regional Command South, under the leadership of Maj. Gen. Robert "Abe" Abrams and the Third Infantry Division.

The brigade has trained throughout the past year at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif., the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, La., and a readiness mission near Fort Bliss, Texas.

"I have the utmost confidence in the capabilities, leaders and Soldiers in each one of these task forces," Col. Hort said. "I know our Soldiers on the ground will receive responsive, accurate and professional aviation support any time and any place they ask for it."

Marne Air Soldiers and units will provide air support to both conventional and special operations ground forces through attack, assault, air reconnaissance and medical evacuation operations. The unit will also be responsible for bolstering the aviation capacity of the Afghan National Security Forces.

Colonel Allan Pepin said that although theater of Afghanistan presents the world's toughest operating environment, he's confident the strength and competence of the Marne Air brigade will lead to mission success.

"We've worked tirelessly to prepare for this deployment, and I'm 100 percent confident these Falcon Soldiers will serve with distinction," Col. Pepin said. "It's a complex, challenging and ever-changing environment, but that's why our Army has "Dog Face" Soldiers."

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