10th Mountain soldiers arrive to support CJTF-HOA

8 May 2003 | Cpl. Matthew J. Apprendi

Soldiers with Company C, 4th Battalion, 31st Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y., arrived here May 4 to support Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa.

The mission of CJTF-HOA is to detect, disrupt and defeat transnational terrorist groups operating in the Horn of Africa region, which is defined as the airspace, land areas and coastal waters of Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti and Yemen.

This is the third time the company has deployed in support of the Global War on Terrorism. Their first deployment was to Aberdeen, Md., supporting Operation Noble Eagle as a security detachment. From there, they deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom to Afghanistan where they participated in some of the fiercest fighting during Operation Anaconda. 

"We remain very focused from coming out of Afghanistan and look forward to supporting CJTF-HOA," said Capt. Scott Austin, commanding officer of Company C.

The company is a light infantry unit capable of performing a variety of missions in support of counter-terrorism operations to include raids and air assaults. Additionally, the company is equipped with several specialized assets including scout snipers and 81mm mortars.

Through recent combat experience and extensive training, the company is capable of operating successfully in both urban and open-terrain environments. They routinely participate in live-fire exercises at a four-man team, squad or platoon level, Austin said.  

"We are ready for a wide variety of operations," said Sgt. Christopher Gregory, a medical noncommissioned officer with Company C. "Anytime we are not deployed, we are training and preparing for the real world operations."

Austin added the soldiers of Company C are extremely professional, highly motivated and ready to get back in the fight to destroy terrorism.  

"There's not a feeling of unfinished business with us, however, there are still pockets of terrorist out there, and they need to be dealt with," Austin said.
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