The Zone 6 Camp Command Cell, currently stationed at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, is comprised of five different units. Those units are the 372nd Signal Company, Joint Forces Headquarters, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 197th Fires Brigade, 39th Army Band, and 3643rd Brigade Support Battalion. The ages of the soldiers within those units are just as diverse. Sgt. 1st Class Edward Raczka, 58, from Concord, is a member of the 39th Army Band stationed in Manchester. Raczka’s many talents range from drummer to electrician. Raczka volunteered for this deployment. He said, “I wanted to move onto a different level of support and leadership that couldn’t be achieved back home.” During the deployment Raczka set a few goals for himself. He wants to better himself as a soldier, person and leader, but also to help other soldiers with less experience.
Raczka and Brigham
One of those less experienced soldiers is 19-year-old Pvt. 2 Harli Brigham. Brigham, from Merrimack, is the youngest member of the team. She is a soldier from the 197th Fires Brigade stationed in Manchester. Brigham wants to better herself during the deployment. She said, “I want to learn more about myself, my strengths and weaknesses.”
Brigham, like most soldiers, has a family back home to include her mother Lisa Curtis, her sister Jocelyn Phillips and her husband Roy Brigham. Brigham said, “My husband stands behind me a hundred percent.” She isn’t the only one with enormous family support back home. Raczka mentioned how his family from the very beginning has supported his decision. Despite the fact that Raczka’s and Brigham’s age, experience and background varies greatly, both soldiers have set similar goals for themselves. During this deployment they want to better themselves and demonstrate what they can accomplish. Events that occurred in November and December: The 197th FiB arrived a little over a month ago. We’ve settled in our barracks. The unit we replaced, HHC, 53rd BSTB from the Florida National Guard, treated us wonderfully and did a lot of work to make ours a smooth transition. We had a formation for the changing of the state flag from Florida to New Hampshire. A few weeks later we conducted a Transfer of Command ceremony. After the ceremony, we assumed command of all operations in Zone 6 CCC. Late in December, the soldiers in the unit received their combat patch. Receiving a combat patch is a landmark in the timeline of a soldier’s deployment. On Christmas Eve, a day typically spent with family back home, the Zone 6 CCC celebrated the day in Kuwait with their brothers- and sister-in-arms. First, there was a camp-wide ceremony with the Army Chief of Staff, Gen. George Casey, who thanked the entire Arifjan force and wished everyone a happy holiday. Second, following Casey’s ceremony, the Zone 6 CCC returned to their work area and held another formation.
Arifjan Camp Command Cell formation after receiving there Brigade Combat Patch During this formation two soldiers were promoted, Private 1st Class Shane Warchol and Pvt. 2 Daley. In addition, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Thomas Graham was awarded the Army Physical Fitness Badge for excelling on his Army Physical Fitness Test. After his award, three re-
enlistments were recognized. Staff Sgt. Carter, Sgt. Chambers and Master Sgt. Degrenier all chose to reenlist during this deployment.
Warchol is promoted. Finally, Lt. Col. Nicholas Adler, commander of Zone 6 CCC, gave out five coins to soldiers who he recognized for extraordinary work. The soldiers rewarded with a coin were Pfc. Jackson, Pfc. Desmarais, and Pvt. 2 Daley from maintenance. Staff Sgt. Coker and Sgt. 1st Class George also from maintenance received coins for their excellent work. A unit cookout was held the following night to celebrate the holidays.