Atlas flexes its muscle in RSC-Southwest CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan – It’s more than 7,600 miles as the crow flies from Valley, Ala., to Helmand Province, Afghanistan. As if that distance and culture shock were not enough, the Soldiers of Task Force Centurion Prime’s Atlas (Alpha Co.) find themselves in one of the most dangerous provinces in Afghanistan operating from bases run by Marines and British forces. It’s all just part of the job for Atlas, which is making some major muscle movements in its missions in Regional Support Command-Southwest as part of the NATO Training MissionAfghanistan. While the mission comes with its own challenges, Cpt. Sammy Gray, Atlas Co. commander, said the company is more than ready to take it on. He said Atlas is in the right place at the right time. "It's an honor to be a part of the missions that are culminating such a long period of anti-terrorism efforts in Afghanistan,” Cpt. Gray said. “Alpha Company 1-167th has a
Task Force Centurion Prime’s Atlas (Alpha Co.) is commanded by Cpt. Sammy Gray (above) and First Sgt. Willie Ingram (right).
very important role in facilitating the training and overall readiness of ANSF forces to handle the war on terror in Helmand Province.” Afghanistan may be new terrain, but War on Terror service is nothing new for Alpha Co. Since the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on the U.S., Alpha has been called to active duty three times. In 2001, Alpha performed security operations at
Ft Rucker, Ala., with one hundred soldiers for one year under the command of thenCpt. Larry Sailors. In 2005, under the command of then-Cpt. Butch Beach (now a major and the TF Centurion Prime executive officer), Alpha Co. served a tour in Iraq, where it conducted combat patrols as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom. SEE ATLAS PAGE TWO 1
ATLAS CONTINUED FROM PAGE ONE
“The mission today is different from that in Iraq; however, our Soldiers are still conducting security missions in support of Afghanistan,” said Atlas First Sgt. Willie Ingram. “No day is the same as our Soldiers continue to place themselves in harm’s way for the freedom that we enjoy every day as Americans. Alpha Co. Soldiers, with their unselfish attitude, continue to fight for the freedom that all human beings deserve.” As part of Operation Enduring Freedom, the Soldiers of Atlas – some of whom were part of the Iraq deployment and many of whom are seeing their first overseas action – are supporting operations designed to see the Afghan National Security Forces take over and maintain security. Cpt. Gray said it’s an important place in history for Alpha Co. to be. “Members of Alpha Co. get to witness signs of progress every time an ANSF element or facility is turned over to the complete control of ANSF leadership,” he said. “We know that our efforts were a part of making those events happen. It's a great feeling.” Cpt. Gray said Atlas Soldiers have traveled many miles and overcome a number of obstacles to help Afghans accomplish their own security goals. “I'm extremely proud of the professionalism and hard work put forth by each one of my Soldiers while carrying out Alpha Co.'s responsibilities to aid in the achievement of these goals,” he said. “It is a true blessing to have such an amazing group of Soldiers and leaders in Alpha Co."
Task Force Centurion Prime’s Atlas (Alpha Co.) has dozens of Soldiers operating in different locations in Helmand Province, mostly at Camp Leatherneck and MOB Lashkar Gah.
Lt. Col. J.R. Bass Commander Task Force Centurion prime Soldiers, families and friends of Task Force Centurion Prime, “Serving our Nation” is a term often used in reference to those of us who wear the uniform but the full meaning of that term is easily overlooked. Webster’s dictionary has many definitions of the word “service” and one that I like in particular is “contributing to the welfare of others.” Of all those definitions though, none seem to quite capture the meaning of what we are doing right now. First of all, none included the term “sacrifice” and we all well know how much of it is required when serving our Nation and the depth and potential of that sacrifice is beyond my ability to put in words. Also missing in any written definition of what we do is the word “commitment.” As Soldiers, we and our families not only made a decision once to “serve” our Nation, but rather are committed to serve when even more is asked, far beyond the initial obligation. Like so many things in life, you must experience the sacrifice and commitment involved in serving our country to actually know what is meant by those simple words. In closing, I will add that it is especially meaningful for me to be “serving our Nation” in Afghanistan as a member of the “Fourth Alabama” this Veterans Day, as our fellow citizens honor all of the men and women who have come before us and those who stand beside us now. May God continue to bless and protect the Fourth Alabama! Drive Forward, J. R. Bass 9
Csm John black Command sergeant major Task Force Centurion prime Veterans Day is November 11th but since that falls on Sunday this year the Federal Holiday will be observed on Monday, November 12th. But who is it for? Who is a Veteran? My father, prayer group members, coworkers, my deacon, choir director, heck even my pastor are veterans. They are everywhere with a special bond between them like a brotherhood I suppose, sharing experiences that many cannot comprehend nor would they choose to experience. We must consider that other countries have veterans as well. The coalition forces here in Afghanistan make up many different countries to include the host nation. We share a bond for life as we continue this experience together. In this we build a respect for each country, their history and their cultures. Presently, we share stories of our families, jobs, communities and current missions. In the future we will share the experiences of our time and efforts in Operation Enduring Freedom. We continue to learn from each other. I would like to dedicate this to the memory CSM Basil Plumely who passed away at the age of 92 in October. He was a leader who advised and made decisions based on experience. The son of a West Virginia coal miner CSM Plumely was the veteran of three different wars and five total combat jumps. I would guess that most Americans knew him as a movie character portrayed by Sam Elliot in the movie “We Were Soldiers.” CSM Plumely performed 32 years of faithful service to our country. He has now joined his wife of 63 years. Deurice Plumely passed away in May of this year. As we commemorate Veterans Day this year, think not so much about whom we are and what we are doing here. Remember those before us who paved the way and taught us to fight in a skillful, more efficient manner. I will conclude with the second paragraph of the Congressional Resolution of June 4, 1926: “Whereas it is fitting that the recurring anniversary of this date should be commemorated with thanksgiving, prayer, and exercises designed to perpetuate peace through good will and mutual understanding between nations.” 4th ALABAMA! CSM John Black
Cpt Robert jackson chaplain Task Force Centurion prime "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God." - Romans 13:1 This has been an important month. By now we know who our Commander in Chief will be for the next four years. For some this is cause for rejoicing and for others this will not be the case. But what I love about America is what happens the day after the election. We move on. We support our new or old leader and we try to make the best of it. Once I was speaking with someone from another nation and he pointed out that there are few places in the world where you can have an election that is nearly split down the middle and the next day not find yourself in the middle of a civil war. As most of us know, over here, that is what often happens. But in America we strive to live peaceably with one another in spite of our differences. For me it is because of the foundational belief I have that this world is not my home, and my Sovereign Lord is not the president. My service to country is wrapped up in my service to God. So no matter how you feel about the election, "Let not your hearts be troubled..." We still stand for freedom, and we still fight for those who cannot fight for themselves. May God bless America, and if He doesn't may my life still be a blessing for others, so in the end He will say, "Well done, thy good and faithful servant." Serving Those Who Serve, Your Chaplain CH CPT Robert Jackson
Important message from Sgt. Oâ€™Neal regarding holiday mail:
Families and Soldiers need to allow at least 3
shipping. If the families and Soldiers want to send packages out for Christmas the latest they need to send the package(s) is st . This will allow proper time for arrival.
! DEC 1
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