JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas –
Capt. Brenda BandaCruz is new to the U.S. Army Reserve, but she is not new to the Army. She attended her first Battle Assembly in August after serving seven years with the Active Component Army. She left active duty because she was ready to start her civilian career. “Joining the Army Reserve allowed me to keep many of my benefits such healthcare, and I was able to find a unit close to home,” says BandaCruz.
Originally from Texas’s Rio Grande Valley, Capt. BandaCruz joined the Army as a 36A - Finance Officer. While on active duty, she served in various positions, from Comptroller to Detachment Commander.
She mobilized in 2016 to Afghanistan, where she served as Deputy Comptroller responsible for sustainment contracts for Security Forces. BandaCruz says, “I got to travel and experience many new things while on active duty. I lived in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Alaska. It was an enjoyable time, but I’m ready for the next phase in my life.”
Now, as a Reserve Soldier, BandaCruz serves as the Command Historian with the 4th Expeditionary Sustainment Command Headquarters in San Antonio, Texas. As the command historian, she acquires, preserves conserves, and interprets historical property and documents for the unit. BandaCruz is also starting a new job in the San Antonio area in the financial management field.
BandaCruz says, “I’m excited to start my civilian career. I am also excited to learn and grow as a military historian for the Army Reserve.”
BandaCruz’s first task as a command historian is to collect and preserve historical items from the command’s contributions to the federal response to COVID-19.
The 4th Expeditionary Sustainment Command mobilized for unique, state-side mission in March 2020. Soldiers from the command provided logistical support to military medical service providers aiding in the federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
BandaCruz is one of many former active duty Soldiers who decide to continue serving in the Reserve Component. The process of transitioning to the Army Reserve takes time. Bandacruz says it was a big decision, but she was glad she made it.