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NEWS | May 4, 2015

Fort Hood celebrates 107 years of the Army Reserve

By Sgt. 1st Class Anthony L Taylor 85th Support Command

FORT HOOD, Texas – Army Reserve and active component soldiers, from First Army, held a ceremony, May 2, at the North Fort Hood Chapel to celebrate the 107th anniversary of the Army Reserve.

Brig. Gen. Frederick R. Maiocco, Jr., commanding general, 85th Support Command, and deputy commanding general for Support, First Army Division West, was in attendance with Maj. Gen. Jeffrey N. Colt, commanding general, First Army Division West; Maiocco served as the guest speaker for the ceremony. 

“I just returned from the First Army commanders’ conference this week, and on behalf of Lieutenant General (Michael) Tucker and Major General (Jeffrey) Colt, we want to extend our congratulations to the Army Reserve and a thanks to the incredible Citizen Soldiers who work and support all the (missions) taking place across, not only First Army, but across the Army as a whole,” said Maiocco.

Maiocco discussed the three Army components and the recent dedicated recognition established for reserve soldiers at the Pentagon.

“The Army Reserve has been granted a special prominent place at the Pentagon where we have our history identified and recognized in a corridor there,” said Maiocco. “Without the support of our Army Reserve, its soldiers, civilians, and families, our world may look very different than it does today.”

Maiocco shared the different expertise fields existing in today’s Army Reserve such as doctors, engineers, lab technicians and logisticians; and he stated that career fields like these are vital to the success of communities and building families across the country.

“All of you know that if you don the uniform, you [contribute] a commitment to service and pride in serving our nation and its armed forces,” said Maiocco. “But we also have another uniform that we wear, our civilian attire … Because we pursue these additional professions, we
bring an amazing unique skill set; this robust capability to the Army does not exist anywhere else.”

The role for the Army Reserve, as an enabling force, for our Army began more than a century ago on its official birth date of April 23, 1908.

“The Army Reserve began in an act to increase the efficiency of the medical department of the United States Army,” Maiocco explained. “The Army Reserve dates back to medical heritage. The challenges associated with the Civil War where so many soldiers died and there 
was such a need for medical care [brought attention] to the U.S. Congress [for] the need to have a corps of professionals to provide support. [This] began the Army Reserve as a medical tool to support warfare, and to be able to give our soldiers the kind of medical care that they deserve.”

Maiocco discussed the history of the Army Reserve across its 107 years and its integration with the active component during the 1970s called Army Total Force Policy. It allowed the Army to maintain an active force that was relatively small while still being able to access peace time capability for contingency environments and contingency operations, and generate force when necessary in times of conflict.

“We are able to do a full range of missions, everything from contingency operations, force-on-force operations, to theater security cooperation response to homeland crisis, training and equipping the force, and partnering with other nation’s militaries, like host nation training support,” said Maiocco. “The Army Reserve has demonstrated its value as a federal force for the nation for over a century.”

Taking a glance at the Army Reserve, more locally, in First Army, Maiocco stated that across First Army, more than fifty percent of those serving as part of First Army Observer/Coach and Trainers are from the reserve component. 

Since Sept. 11, 2001, more than 300,000 Citizen Soldiers have deployed to overseas contingencies with an Army Reserve force current strength of about 198,000.

“I want to say thank you for your service and commitment in peace time and at war during the past 107 years. It’s been an amazing history for our Army Reserve,” said Maiocco.

“You should be proud of your legacy as Army Reserve soldiers. I am proud of our legacy as Army Reserve soldiers.”