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Q and A with Regional Command - East Leadership

Lt. Col. Christian Drennen, JIC Chief, Task Force Alpine

Lt. Col. Christian Drennen, JIC Chief, Regional Command - East

1. Why did you join the Army?

I initially joined the Army because I was drawn to the inherent challenges of serving in the Infantry. All I wanted to do was be an Airborne, Ranger qualified combat infantry leader. It wasn't until I achieved those things that I realized how much I enjoyed serving and leading Soldiers. I also realized that there was a lot more to the Army than simply being a platoon leader. Now I truly enjoy having a positive effect on Soldiers through leadership, and ensuring those who have the jobs I once had do them better than I did.

2. You can meet one person in history: who is it and why?

Tough question. There's so many. Sir William Johnson and Robert Rogers immediately come to mind. If I had to choose one, it would be an anonymous American who shouldered his musket and marched to the sound of the guns at Lexington and Concord, April 19, 1775. I'd love to speak to one of them about what motivated them to sacrifice their personal comfort and security, and to stake their lives on something that, at the time, was far from a foregone conclusion.

3. Tell me about one moment/person/situation that has significantly impacted your military career.

There's several, but one stands out. I was a very junior captain having a conversation with my battalion commander about staying in the Army or getting out. The fact that he was taking the time to talk to me on such a personal level seemed remarkable in it of itself. At one point in the conversation he explained that sooner or later, every single one of us will take off the uniform; whether we chose to get out at a certain point or serve until retirement, all of us will eventually leave the Army. With that, he said that no matter how you leave the Army, there are two things you should strive to have intact: your family and your Integrity. It was a simple statement but to me it was profound. It still is, and I've since passed that advice on to other Soldiers who are contemplating their career options.

We want to ask YOUR questions - if you have a question you'd like to ask RC-E leadership please send them to KFOR29.PAD@gmail.com.

Best mountain warrior competition

A Lativian Soldier from Task Force Ransom, Regional Command - East, takes part in the Best Mountain Warrior Competition final event with a hike up Mount Ljuboten in Kosovo, November 2, 2021 (U.S. Army photo by Capt. Mikel Arcovitch).

U.S., Latvian, Polish, and Turkish Soldiers participated in a Best Mountain Warrior Competition on Camp Bondsteel and Mount Ljuboten, 1-3 November, 2021. The competition included a timed hike, a written test, a board, and stations testing various Soldier skills.

Soldiers from Regional Command - East, take part in the Best Mountain Warrior Competition November 1-3, 2021 (U.S. Army photos by Sgt. Gillian McCreedy and Sgt. 1st Class Jason Alvarez).
The Best Mountain Warrior Competition 1st Place Winners were OR-2 Michal Lecki (Polish COY), OR-5 Michael Dillon (U.S. Army TF EOD), and OF-1 Lauris Ozolins (Lativian COY). (U.S. Army photo by Sergeant 1st Class Jason Alvarez)

Trunk or treat - camp bondsteel

Bondsteel family members pose with 29th Military Police Soldiers at a Trunk or Treat display, Oct. 31, 2021 (U.S. Army photo by Capt. Mikel Arcovitch)

U.S. Soldiers in Regional Command - East coordinated and held a Halloween celebration for all uniformed service members, civilian and contractor personnel along with their families at Camp Bondsteel, October 31, 2021. Halloween is a holiday commonly celebrated in western countries and typically involves, trick or treating, dressing up in costumes and parties.

Camp Bondsteel Trunk or Treat (U.S. Army photos by Capt. Mikel Arcovitch)

Soldiers handed out candy, ran a toy gun range, played pin the tail on the donkey, played Halloween music, and had other various family activities with military vehicles on display.

individual weapons training camp novo selo

U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Barb Pendl

Latvian Armed Forces service members conducted weapons training near Mitrovica, Kosovo, November 3, 2021.

Weapons Training - U.S. Army photos by Staff Sgt. Barb Pendl.

For member of all armed forces, accurate marksmanship requires a good sight picture, breath control, trigger technique and an understanding of the weapon system. Range time is a necessity for every Soldier to develop and hone these skills and part of the readiness for which we continuously strive for.

Kilo 20 community engagement

Liaison Monitoring Team K20 engages with teachers, administrators and children at Halil Alidema Primary School, in Pozheran, Kosovo, October 28, 2021 (U.S. Army photos by Sgt. Gillian McCreedy).

Soldiers with the U.S. LMT Kilo 20 based at Camp Bondsteel, visited the Halil Aldidema Primary School in Pozheran, Kosovo, handing out copies of 4U magazine and stickers to the children. The LMT visited the school in order to understand the education dynamics and assess potential needs of the community.

FLAG FEATURE - hungary

The flag of Hungary

Whose flag is this, you ask? You're looking at the flag of Hungary!

The Hungarian flag was officially adopted on 12 October 1957 after a revolution in 1956. The red color at the top represents strength and symbolizes the blood shed during the many battles of the country’s history. The white of the flag represents freedom and faithfulness and symbolizes the Countries Rivers, and the green symbolizes Hungary’s mountains. The color scheme was originally mentioned during a coronation ceremony in 1608, but could also go back as far as the 13th Century and associated with the monarchs of Hungary.

The original flag contained the traditional coat of arms when the tricolor national flag with three horizontal bars came to be. This came at the end of World War I in 1918 and the subsequent collapse of the Austria-Hungary Empire.

In 1949, several years after the end of World War II the coat of arms was replaced with a Soviet-style symbol in the white stripe at the center of the flag as Eastern Europe was draped behind the “Iron Curtain”

Hungary is a history-rich country that is a large part of the peace and stability operations in the Balkan Region, having become a member of NATO the same year of the 1999 war in Kosovo.

Soldier and nco of the month - November

Soldier of the Month SPC Alyssa Rydlewski and NCO of the Month SGT Rebecca Bugnacki

Congratulations to Soldier of the Month SPC Rydlewski and NCO of the Month SGT Bugnacki!

SOLDIer Spotlight

Say hello to Spc. Ethan Newton, our Soldier Spotlight for November! SPC Newton is from Saint Albans, Vermont, and is assigned to Delta Company, 186th Brigade Support Battalion (Mountain). In Kosovo, he is a part of Task Force Owl, Regional Command - East.

(U.S. Army Soldier Spotlight by Sergeant 1st Class Jason Alvarez)

Questions? Comments? Suggestions? Questions for leadership? Please reach out to us with your thoughts @ KFOR29.PAD@GMAIL.COM