Soldiers from the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, perform port operations in Bremerhaven, Germany, Oct. 17-22, 2019. The 1st ABCT has been deployed throughout Eastern Europe for the last nine months as a rotational force in support of U.S. Army Europe and Atlantic Resolve.
The 1ABCT crew started receiving vehicles and equipment, on a daily basis, as early as the 24th of September through the 15th of October. Between 10-100 pieces of equipment per hour and over 2,000 pieces of Devil Brigade vehicles and equipment will be loaded and transported back to the U.S. aboard three Roll-on Roll-off Carrier (Ro-Ro) vessels.
“We received the brigades equipment via rail cars then downloaded and worked with the local stevedores to stage all the vehicles and prepare them for upload onto the vessels,” said Sgt. Maj. Ralph Allen Cook Jr., operations sergeant major, 3rd Battalion, 66th Armored Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division.
Eight Soldiers will also be traveling aboard two of the three vessels back to the U.S., to oversee the vehicles and equipment. Each of the two vessels, the Patriot and the Resolve, will have a mechanic that is familiar with the equipment, should an issue arise.
“Being on the vessels is a cool opportunity, something new for me,” said Sgt. Brendan McCarthy, a light wheeled vehicle mechanic, with the 3rd Battalion, 66th Armored Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division.
The Devil Brigades Soldiers are ready to go home but most will miss and cherish their time in Europe and the opportunity to live, train and fight with their allies and partners.
“I know from talking to other Soldiers, everybody has enjoyed it for the most part, even though we worked hard everybody appreciates the opportunity to come and see Europe,” said McCarthy.
The Devil Brigade was part of more than 6,000 U.S. regionally-allocated Soldiers in Germany, Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania, on a nine-month rotation, in support of Atlantic Resolve. Atlantic Resolve provides ready, combat-credible forces through multinational training and security cooperation activities.