82nd Airborne's 4th Brigade Combat Team to depart for Afghanistan
By DREW BROOKS | The Fayetteville Observer, N.C. | Published: January 14, 2014
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — About 200 Fort Bragg soldiers are scheduled to leave for Afghanistan Sunday, officials said.
The soldiers will be the first wave of troops to deploy from the 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment.
Family and friends will see the soldiers off during an event Sunday evening.
An estimated 450 troops from the battalion will eventually deploy this month, officials with the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division have said. The battalion will provide base and convoy security for U.S. and NATO forces.
Last month, about 450 paratroopers from another 4th Brigade Combat Team unit deployed to Afghanistan. The soldiers, part of the 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, are helping to train Afghan security forces, officials said.
The deployments are the last for 4th Brigade before it is disbanded later this year as part of an Army reorganization. Then, most of its battalions will be placed under other 82nd Airborne Division units.
The 4th Brigade was formed in 2006 but has deployed repeatedly over its short history. The latest deployments mark the fifth time elements of the brigade have deployed.
In Afghanistan, the 4th Brigade soldiers could work with a host of Fort Bragg units.
The 82nd Sustainment Brigade and 1st Theater Sustainment Command are already in country, as are various smaller units and some of Fort Bragg's special operations forces.
Last month, officials announced that about 3,200 soldiers with the 1st Brigade Combat Team will deploy later this year. The brigade leaves this month for Joint Readiness Training at Fort Polk, La.
The 18th Airborne Corps is also set to deploy soon. About 500 soldiers from the 18th Airborne Corps will establish the core of two important headquarters: the International Joint Command and the National Support Element.