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Press Release
February 24, 2004
2nd Battalion, 162nd Infantry Gets Short Reprieve before Heading to Iraq
Salem, OR - The deployment date for the Oregon Army National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 162nd Infantry, training as part of the 39th Brigade Combat Team of the Arkansas National Guard and the 1st Cavalry Division of Ft. Hood, Tex., will be delayed due to reception, staging, on-ward movement and integration (RSOI) capabilities in the Central Command theater of operations.
The unit was originally scheduled to deploy during the first week of March from Fort Polk, La., in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom II. "I want to assure everyone that this delay is in no way a reflection of the readiness or ability of the 39th Brigade Combat Team," said Brig. Gen. Ronald S. Chastain, commanding general of the 39th Infantry Brigade. "Our soldiers are fully trained and prepared to support the mission."
While the exact deployment dates have not yet been released, planning dates for the unit are the first three weeks of March. "Mission requirements will determine how many additional days will be possible for each soldier," said Chastain. "Some soldiers, such as advance party personnel, may still be required to depart on previously announced schedules."
Depending on the new rotation schedule, some soldiers may get more time with family members than others. The good news is that almost all of the soldiers will have more time with their loved ones than previously projected. Additional details will be released as soon as they become available.
Mobilized in October 2003, the battalion has been training with the 39th Brigade at Fort Hood, Texas, and Fort Polk, La., since November. The soldiers are expected to spend 12 months "boots on the ground" in Iraq.
For more information contact:
Maj. Arnold V. Strong
Kay Fristad