News

Fri
20
Oct

NPE Ties yellow ribbons until Soldiers return home

By ANGIE THORNE 

Fort Polk, La. — The symbolism of tying a yellow ribbon around a tree is significant in helping those at home demonstrate that they remember loved ones abroad — usually Soldiers — and are waiting for them to return. In honor of that tradition, North Polk Elementary School students and their parents, as well as Fort Polk and community leaders, helped tie yellow ribbons on the trees lining the driveway of North Polk Elementary School Oct. 12.

With her spouse currently deployed, Araceli Moore said she attended the yellow ribbon event to support her 4-yearold daughter. “I think this is great. It teaches young children to value the men and women fighting for their country,” she said.

 

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Fri
20
Oct

Fort Polk firefighters share their career stories, memories

By VIVIAN LOPEZ 

FORT POLK, La. — Fort Polk firefighters are on standby daily to respond to the emergencies of Fort Polk Soldiers and their Families. It’s easy to spot them in their bright red fire trucks, but who are the men behind the yellow suits and helmets?

Here are the stories of just a few of the many Fort Polk firefighters who protect the community every day.

 

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Fri
20
Oct

ACP hours undergo some changes beginning Nov. 1

FORT POLK, La. — Some Fort Polk access control points (gates) will undergo changes in hours of operation beginning Nov. 1. Affected gates include ACP 2 (La. Hwy. 467 north), ACP 5 (La. Hwy 467 and La. Hwy. 10), and ACP 6 (Chaffee Road).

Changes are being made, according to Col. Jarrett Thomas II, garrison commander, so Soldiers can continue one of their most important missions: Training.

“We need to increase readiness by returning our Soldiers to their commanders for training,” he said.

 

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Fri
20
Oct

Readiness board to examine, prioritize installation readiness

By DAVID VERGUN 

WASHINGTON — The acting secretary of the Army recently authorized formation of an Installation Readiness Board of Directors that will examine and prioritize installation readiness programs and funding, said J. Randall Robinson.

The board will be responsible for, among other things, making decisions such as which of the 23 percent of Army-wide poor or failing facilities should be renovated, and which installation programs will be kept or jettisoned.

Robinson, the acting assistant secretary of the Army for Installations, Energy and Environment, spoke earlier this month at the Association of the U.S. Army's Annual Meeting and Exposition. He said board decisions will be directly linked to "warfighter readiness, not wants and needs." The new board will be chaired by the vice chief of staff of the Army, as well as the assistant secretaries of the Army for IEE and Manpower and Reserve Affairs. Voting members will be Army four-star generals.

Fri
13
Oct

Proud Patriots awarded unique combat patch

By Staff Sgt. NATHAN AKRIDGE

IRAQ — Soldiers serving with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division — the Patriot Brigade — were awarded their combat patch from the Texas National Guard’s 36th Infantry Division, marking their first deployment to a combat zone.

Col. Brian Sullivan, commander, 3rd BCT, presented the Wartime Service Shoulder Sleeve Insignia to his Soldiers during a ceremony held at the unit’s forward base in Iraq.

Pfc. Dashon Brown, Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 5-25 Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd BCT, 10th Mtn Div said, “I felt like I accomplished something that I know most people will never experience in their lifetime. I felt a sense of pride in what I have done.”

Brown was so overjoyed by his accomplishment he phoned a loved one back home to share the significance of the ceremony.

 

Fri
13
Oct

Fort Polk ACP weekend hours adjusted

FORT POLK, La. — Fort Polk officials announced changes to the hours of operation for access control points 2, 5 and 6 beginning Nov. 1.

“The purpose of the reduction in operating hours at our access control points on the weekends is to increase readiness by reducing the number of Soldiers performing gate guard duties and returning them to the their commanders for training,” said Col. Jarrett Thomas II, garrison commander.

Access control point 2 will close on weekends from Friday at 9 p.m. until Monday at 5 a.m. as will access control point 6. Both gates will close on federal holidays.

 

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Fri
13
Oct

Polk Soldier to compete in international natural bodybuilding competition

By VIVIAN LOPEZ

FORT POLK, La. — Former bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger once said, “The mind is the limit. As long as the mind can envision the fact that you can do something, you can do it, as long as you really believe 100 percent.”

This is the motto of Sgt. Zakaria Traore, a paralegal noncommissioned officer for the 115th Combat Support Hospital at the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate, and professional bodybuilder.

Last month, Traore hit a milestone in the dreams he has outside of the Army — he won first place in the pro classic physique category of the Pro/AM Team USA qualifiers for natural bodybuilding.

“When I won, I felt that all the work I had done in the dark came up to the light, and the hard work I had done in silence was now recognized by my peers,” he said.

 

Fri
13
Oct

Polk Families participate in Warrior Walk to honor deployed Soldiers

By VIVIAN LOPEZ

FORT POLK, La. — Fort Polk military spouses are joining for a common goal: To walk 14,400 miles — the mileage equivalent to Iraq and back — collaboratively in support of their deployed Soldiers in the 2nd Battalion, 4th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division.

Military spouse Emily Starks came up with the challenge — known as the Warrior Walk to Iraq — and got the idea from a previous unit of her husband.

“It was a positive and encouraging challenge to get together and do something physical, so I wanted to bring it here and use it with this deployment,” she said.

Starks said she started the “Warrior Walk to Iraq” Facebook group in July primarily geared towards military spouses of Soldiers in 2nd Bn, 4th Inf Reg, but said the challenge is open to other Family members as well. They started tracking miles in September via the Facebook group page.

 

Tue
10
Oct

Heritage reunion honors those who sacrificed homes

FORT POLK, La. — The Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk, along with the Heritage Family Association, welcome friends and Family from far and wide for the annual Heritage Reunion, Oct. 14 from 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m. at the installation Main Post Chapel, bldg 427, 7217Radio Road.

The reunion, hosted every fall since 2007, al-lows visitors to halt their busy lives and step back in time to simpler, but arguably more difficult days.

 

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Tue
10
Oct

Soldiers return from nine-month deployment serving AFRICOM

FORT POLK, La. — Twenty Soldiers from the383rd Movement Control Team, 519th Military Police Battalion, returned from a nine-month deployment to Vicenza, Italy where they were as-signed to U.S. Army Africa to inspect cargo de-parting Africa on U.S. Department of Defense aircraft.

The Soldiers were welcomed by Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk and battalion leadership, Family and friends in a redeployment ceremony Sept. 29 at 519th MP Bn headquarters.

 

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