By Maj. Gen. Donna Martin and Command Sgt. Maj. James Breckinridge
Special to GUIDON
On Tuesday, we will celebrate the 111th birthday of the United States Army Reserve, and we take a moment to reflect on how essential the Army Reserve is to our nation.
Through multiple wars and countless operations, crises and emergencies, Reserve Soldiers have never failed to answer our nation’s call.
The Army Reserve of today can trace its roots to a national citizen-Soldier force as far back as the French and Indian War; however, it was not until 1908 that Congress established the Medical Reserve Corps, which later evolved into a larger Organized Reserve under the National Defense Act of 1916.
Today, nearly 150,000 Reserve Soldiers serve in more than 1,600 units spread across all 50 states and five U.S. territories.
The U.S. Army Reserve is a critical and substantial part of Military Police, Engineer and Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear forces, and we could not achieve victory on the battlefield without them.
Similarly, the nation as a whole cannot go to war and be successful without the essential capabilities found in the Army Reserve. Reserve Soldiers have been tested in the crucible of combat, and they provide invaluable civilian-experience and talent that make our force more capable, decisive and lethal.
Here at Fort Leonard Wood, we have the unique opportunity to train with Reservists in our courses and to have the 102nd Training Division (Maneuver Support) here as a part of our Team of Teams. We are proud to serve with you.
Happy 111th birthday, Army Reserve.
(Editor’s note: Martin is the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence and Fort Leonard Wood commanding general. Breckinridge is the MSCoE and Fort Leonard Wood command sergeant major.)