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The morning of August was bittersweet as HHB bid farewell to SFC Kerr, the acting First Sergeant and welcomed 1SG Joseph to the Headhunters Battery. After the Change of Responsibility ceremony, Soldiers and NCOs listened intently as 1SG Joseph discussed his leadership style, the new changes he plans on implementing to the Battery, and his favorite saying “Rock Steady.” One thing is for sure, the Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers alike seemed to be impressed and look forward to working with their new First Sergeant. As some would say, “This isn’t 1SG Joseph’s first rodeo.” He brings with him the experience of being a 1SG of a Brigade Headquarters and Headquarters Battery in Korea. Welcome to the First Strike Battalion 1SG Joseph.

Hail and Farewell Apr


BDE APFT Challenge

On August 5, 2010, Soldiers from the HHB enjoyed a Battery Organization Day at the Belton Lake and Outdoor Recreation Area (BLORA). The Soldiers from HHB, 1-21 FA endured the 100+ degree heat to enjoy the food and games. The Soldiers enjoyed grilled hot dogs and hamburgers that were cooked to perfection by CPT Raymond Stapleton, the Assistant Operations Officer. Soldiers were able to play football, basketball and horseshoes as well as enjoy the water activities. Although most of the children enjoyed the waterslides, the kids were able to participate in a water balloon toss. Additionally, some parents teamed up with their children and competed in the three-legged race. All activities gave the kids an opportunity to win a prize. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners received a prize but all the participants were able to walk away with at least a small prize. This was a well deserved break for the Headhunter Battery after completing a battalion live fire training exercise near the end of July. The Soldiers have learned that they can work hard and be rewarded so they can play hard.

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BDE APFT Challenge

The First Strike Officers come together to win the Rail Gunner APFT Challenge for the second consecutive time. The last APFT Challenge conducted on Dec 2009 was also dominated by the First Strike Officers. The competition was tough but the First Strike Officers won by an average of over ten points remaining the undefeated champions and owners of the BDE APFT Challenge Cup.

Our Battalion Commander, LTC Davel, received the APFT Challenge Cup from our Brigade Commander, COL Thompson. LTC Davel with his infinite words of wisdom shared this inspirational quote with us, “Success rests not only on ability, but upon commitment, loyalty, and pride. That's what the Officers in the First Strike Battalion are all about". Rocket 6

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The Soldiers and family members of the 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion gather at Big Hoss BBQ in Killeen on 9 Apr 10 to welcome new Officers and farewell those leaving the battalion. The Hail and Farewell was a success bringing in record numbers going over 50 personnel in attendance. It was an all you can eat BBQ feast and the food was delicious.

Amongst those being farewelled were 1LT Perazzoli from 575 FSC, CPT Owusu from HHB, CPT Carter from HHB, 1LT Harris from A BTRY, CPT Leon from HHB, CPT Cress from HHB, CPT Glilmi from HHB, and CPT Piereman from HHB. The battalion is sad to see so many Officers go but soon there will be new Officers coming in to fill in the gaps.

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Hail and Farewell Apr


Dining Out

The 1-21 Field Artillery Battalion conducts an all hands Dining Out event at the Plaza Hotel on 1 April 2010. About 250 Soldiers, family members, and guest were in attendance. The event started with a receiving line greeting all the guest to the event. Then the colors were posted, we toasted, dinner was served, a video presentation was played, the BN CDR rendered his speech, there was a special award presentation for CSM Gardner, the cake was cut and served, the FRG Leader presented flowers to the head table spouses, and then it was dance time.

The event culminated at around midnight. Everyone had a wonderful time and many spouses, guest, and Soldiers are already talking about the next Dining Out Event. Please enjoy the Photo Gallery posted on the Website. You may also go to our Face Book page to view more photos of the event.

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Within seconds after the ready signal was given, the ground shook as the sound barrier gave way and commanded a thunderous boom to come forth. The sky lit up in a blaze of fire as if it were the 4th of July.

The commotion could be heard and seen from miles and miles away, fortunately, no one would get hurt. The only upset would come from a few cows in a distant pasture close to the impact zone.

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Live Fire Exercise


Wash Rack Operations

The battalion returned from the field after a four day training event to certify the launcher crews. Now that they have all been certified, it's time to get down and dirty scrapping the mud off the launchers. All the batteries took turns taking their launchers through the wash rack.

The BN Chaplain, CPT James Ward, visited the Soldiers to lift their spirits during this not so popular task. The Chaplain said, "This morning, I got to spend some time with the Soldiers of 1-21 FA as they cleaned their launchers after a week in the field. It's a fact that it's a dirty job, but somebody's got to do it. And they did it well, digging out mud, soaking tracks and washing down their kings of the battle. As the Chaplain, I had heard that Field Artillery units are smart and proud of what they do. I saw that first hand. I'm offering my salute to the Soldiers of 1-21 FA for a first class wash rack operation. "First Strike!""

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The Steak Team Mission donated 10,000 steak meals to honor the heroes of Fort Hood on 3 March 2010. The Steak Team Mission is a group of Dallas based supporters who provide, prepare, and serve steak dinners to Soldiers in harm's way in remote and hazardous areas.

The Steak Team Mission and volunteers from the Dallas area prepared and served 4000 steak meals at the Operation Iraqi Freedom DFAC, 4000 steak meals at the Theodore Roosevelt DFAC, and 2000 steak meals at the Freeman DFAC during the lunch meal. The meals were donated and free to all military personnel, DOD civilians, DOD contractors, and families.

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Steak Team Mission


NCO of the Month - Feb 10 Soldier of the Month - Feb 10

On 24 February 2010, the 1st Battalion, 21st Field Artillery held its February Soldier and NCO of the Month board. There were four Soldiers competing for Soldier of the Month and three Non-Commissioned Officers competing for NCO of the Month.

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On 5 February 2010, B Battery conducted a Class-A, Army Service Uniform, inspection in the 1-21 FA Motor Pool. The Soldiers had invested significant time and effort to prepare their uniforms for the inspection and despite the cold and blowing wind, the battery stood at rigid attention and perfect interval for their review. As expected, the Non-Commissioned Officers looked immaculate. Of the Soldiers, PFC Matthew Baker had the best uniform in the battery. 1SG Wilder was overheard to have said "It's good to see a little of the old 'spit & polish' and attention-to-detail back in the army. By CPT Andrew Zapf

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B BTRY Combatives


B BTRY Launcher Road March

On 2 February 2010, B Battery took their six M270A1 MLRS Launchers and two HMMWVs on a 30 mile road march to build driver confidence, identify dormant maintenance issues, and practice platoon command and control. The convoy took the Nolan Road tank trail west and turned around at Nolanville Road where battery maintenance teams assisted the operators in conducting during-PMCS tasks. The event took an hour and a half and was hugely successful and will be repeated for all types of battery rolling equipment. By CPT Andrew Zapf

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On 4 February 2010, the Bulldogs put a new spin on sports PT: Combatives Football! After every touchdown scored, using Ultimate Football rules, the game would halt for a brief period of combatives. Members of the scoring team would place the scored-upon members in the guard position and given about 30 seconds to escape. Not only did heart rates stay high, but Bulldog morale soared. The event has come to be known as the "Bulldog Mud Bowl" due to the abundant rain and snow present. By CPT Andrew Zapf

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B BTRY Combatives


SSG Starling

Congratulations to SSG Thomas N. Starling for his dedication and continued commitment to his country! SSG Starling has extended his service in the US Army for another 4 years. He will soon be attending the Airborne School. He was re-enlisted by his Company Commander, CPT Timothy Martin, at the 1-21 FA BN motorpool. Click on the link below to see more photographs from his re-enlistment ceremony.

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The weather was cold and the motor pool lights shined bright in the darkness of the early morning, but the outdoor conditions did not deter the Soldiers from the start of their mission. January 11would become a very busy day for the Soldiers of 1st Battalion, 21st Field Artillery as the GATE II equipment draw began for the unit.

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Gate II Draw


SGT CornstubblePFC Anderson

At the end, there could only be one winner in each category of the 1st Battalion 21st Field Artillery January NCO/Soldier of the Month board. Those winners were SGT Joshua Cornstubble, Alpha Battery 1-21 FA, and PFC Wesley Anderson, Alpha Battery 1-21 FA.

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The 24th of November was a cold and windy day during which the first ever 1-21 FA Turkey Bowl, a flag football tournament. The field of battle, Hood Stadium, provided the back drop for teams from across the battalion to compete and in an attempt to claim “Victory”. But in the iconic words of Connor MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod’s, “There could only be one.”.

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Turkey Bowl


PFC Reno

Private First Class Norman Bradford Reno was born on March 20, 1989, in Edmond, OK. Prior to joining the Army, PFC Reno worked at an oil company owned by his father and had the position of logger. Before working in his father’s company, PFC Reno worked at an electronics company as a driver and assembler.

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Families and Friends of C Battery,

As you all know, the C 1-21 FA main body has arrived at FOB Delta. Since we hit the ground our main focus was ensuring that our Soldiers were getting settled into their new living quarters. The living conditions are a step up from what we had in Basra, and consist of open rooms with bunk beds and wall lockers.

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Charlie Battery Soldiers


41st Fires BDE Change of Command

Lt. Gen. Robert Cone, III Corps and Fort Hood commander, passes the 41st Fires Brigade colors to Col. John C. Thomson, III, who assumed command of the 41st Fires Brigade at Cameron Field, Oct. 8.

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Colonel Dick Francey, 41st Fires Brigade commander, and Command Sgt. Maj. Kelvin Hughes, 41st Fires Brigade’s senior enlisted advisor, uncase the Rail Gunner colors, signifying the completion of the brigade’s combat deployment to Iraq.

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41st Fires BDE Uncasing Ceremony