Departure Ceremony for Kosovo Forces

More than 1,300 National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers Depart Camp Atterbury for Kosovo Deployment

Edinburgh, Ind. – More than 1,300 Army National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers of Kosovo Forces 11 will be honored at a departure ceremony January 19, 2009, at 3:00 p.m. at the Camp Atterbury National Guard Armory, building 4.

The 40th Infantry Division of the California Army National Guard, based in Los Alamitos, Calif., will lead Task Force Falcon in Multi-National Task Force (East) as part of the NATO led Kosovo Force (KFOR). The task force recently completed post-mobilization training at Camp Atterbury.

The task force mission is to conduct peace enforcement operations in the U.S.-led, Multi-National Task Force-East sector of Kosovo beginning in spring 2009. “We will help ensure a safe and secure environment for all the people in our sector,” said Brig. Gen. Keith Jones, KFOR 11 Task Force Falcon Commanding General. “Our troops are receiving the best training available to prepare them for their work ahead.”

The training at Camp Atterbury spanned the spectrum from individual Army Warrior task training to battalion and task force staff proficiency. Staff elements have worked through intense command post exercises and subordinate units have been challenged by urban operations training and nonlethal training at the Muscatatuck Urban Training Center (MUTC).

The majority of Task Force Falcon’s Soldiers are from the California National Guard, however, they will be joined in the mission by the 1-207th Aviation Regiment of the Alaska Army National Guard, Company C, 1-169th General Support Aviation Battalion of the Maryland National Guard, the 753rd Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) Company of the West Virginia National Guard, and the U.S. Army Reserve’s 176th Medical Group based in Garden Grove, Calif..

This mission marks the second time in four years that the 40th ID has commanded Task Force Falcon in Kosovo. In 2005, the 40th ID led a similar one-year deployment of U.S. Soldiers supporting the Kosovo mission. United States armed forces have been part of the NATO peacekeeping forces since 1999.

We are indebted to these citizen Soldiers and their families for their commitment as they are a superb and indispensable part of a team chosen to exhibit their skills in executing their mission.

Please confirm your attendance by calling Maj. Alana Schwermer at 650-862-4457 or Capt. Jonathan Shiroma at 916-205-1584.

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