29th ID receives Army Meritorious Unit Commendation for 2016-2017 deployment

Maj. Gen. Blake C. Ortner, 29th Infantry Division commander, and Brig. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen, the Assistant Adjutant General - Army for the Maryland National Guard, recognize Maryland Army National Guard Soldiers of the 29th Infantry Division for their overseas service during a Freedom Salute ceremony Dec. 3, 2017, at the Rep. Steny H. Hoyer Armory in Cheltenham, Maryland. (U.S. Army photo by Capt. Scott Campbell)

Maj. Gen. Blake C. Ortner, 29th Infantry Division commander, and Brig. Gen. Timothy E. Gowen, the Assistant Adjutant General – Army for the Maryland National Guard, recognize Maryland Army National Guard Soldiers of the 29th Infantry Division for their overseas service during a Freedom Salute ceremony Dec. 3, 2017, at the Rep. Steny H. Hoyer Armory in Cheltenham, Maryland. (U.S. Army photo by Capt. Scott Campbell)

FORT BELVOIR, Va. — Headquarters Battalion, 29th Infantry Division received the Army Meritorious Unit Commendation for its 2016-2017 deployment in support of Operation Spartan Shield and Operation Inherent Resolve, Maj. Gen. Blake C. Ortner, the 29th ID commander, announced to a formation of 29th ID Soldiers Jan. 14, 2018, at Fort Belvoir, Virginia.

“The accolades that the division received, I’ve never seen it before,” Ortner said. “I think that’s a testament to the great job you did during this deployment. It continues to resonate throughout the Army. Senior leaders within the Army recognize the 29th and recognize the outstanding job you did.”

According to Army Regulation 600-8-22, the Army Meritorious Unit Commendation is awarded to units for exceptionally meritorious conduct in the performance of outstanding services for at least six continuous months during the period of military operations against an armed enemy. The unit must display such outstanding devotion and superior performance of exceptionally difficult tasks as to set it apart and above other units with similar missions.

“The thing that is most incredible about it is that we were notified less than four months after the deployment,” Ortner added. “That is the fastest I’ve ever seen a MUC awarded. What that tells me is that when our write up went to the board to get approved, it took no time at all. They approved it on the spot. That says something about the great job you did and the fact it’s still recognized in the Army at the highest levels what you all accomplished on this deployment.”

The citation was signed Aug. 3, 2017, by Acting Secretary of the Army Ryan McCarthy and reads, “During the period of 4 December 2016 to 13 July 2017, Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 29th Infantry Division served with distinction and unmatched professionalism in support of Operations Spartan Shield and Inherent Resolve. The unit distinguished itself in the execution of mission command operations over 5 brigades and over 10,000 Soldiers comprising Task Force Spartan in Kuwait and Jordan. They played a pivotal role in the performance of the Operation Spartan Shield mission by promoting regional stability and building partner capacity amongst coalition forces, resulting in increased security across the area of responsibility. Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 29th Infantry Division’s outstanding performance of duty is in keeping with the finest tradition of military service and reflects distinct credit upon themselves, the Army National Guard and the United States Army.”


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