Fort Hood Deploys 300 Intelligence Troops - kcentv.com - KCEN HD - Waco, Temple, and Killeen

Fort Hood Deploys 300 Intelligence Troops

Posted: Updated:

Three hundred Fort Hood troops are off to Afghanistan to keep our Military and coalition forces one step ahead of the enemy.

They flew out before the sun came up Thursday morning, as the 1st Cavalry Division Band played for them on the flight line.

One by one, Lieutenant Colonel Mark Johnson shook soldiers' hands before they boarded the plane. 

This is LTC Johnson's third tour in Afghanistan.

"Every time I go back, it's encouraging," he said.

The mission is two fold -- to protect our own and coalition forces and to assist and train the Afghan Army to protect its own.

"They've made great strides, and really now it's just about reinforcing, and giving them the training that they need to continue the mission when we're gone," said LTC Johnson.

It has been a long road to get here for the 303d and 163d Military Intelligence Battalions.

"Our soldiers have trained extremely hard over these last 12 months. We've got our leaders taking care of the soldiers, and we're ready to go," said Command Sergeant Major Warren Robinson with the 303D Military Intelligence Battalion.

It's Specialist Hector Velez's first deployment, and he says he's eager to take what he's learned as a teacher in Puerto Rico and apply it overseas.

"I've been able to watch some videos on how they train different people over there in Afghanistan, and I'm excited, I want to do it, I'm ready," Hector said.

For so many who have deployed before, going back to Afghanistan means seeing how far Afghan forces have come in taking over the fight.

Sergeant Kayla Orona-Cortes says, "I think it's pretty exciting to see the progress of how it's gone."

"They're taking more control every month that goes by. It's just hopeful and encouraging to see what they're doing," LTC Johnson said.

So these soldiers are keeping one eye on the enemy and the other on progress, and they'll teach their Afghan partners to do the same.

Reporter: Sophia Stamas sstamas@kcentv.com

Photographer: Chris Buford cbuford@kcentv.com

  • Latest NewsMore>>

  • Police Chief Says 'Irreconcilable Differences' with Mayor Over PD Led Him to Quit

    Police Chief Says 'Irreconcilable Differences' with Mayor Over PD Led Him to Quit

    Thursday, July 24 2014 6:43 PM EDT2014-07-24 22:43:54 GMT
    (KCEN) – Officer Michael Lugo revealed his reasoning to KCEN Thursday following his resignation as interim police chief in Little River-Academy. Lugo, formerly the town's reserve police officer, stepped down Wednesday after less than two weeks on the job as chief.More >>
    (KCEN) – Officer Michael Lugo revealed his reasoning to KCEN Thursday following his resignation as interim police chief in Little River-Academy. Lugo, formerly the town's reserve police officer, stepped down Wednesday after less than two weeks on the job as chief.More >>
  • Minnesota Man Says Southwest Removed His Family Over Tweet

    Minnesota Man Says Southwest Removed His Family Over Tweet

    Thursday, July 24 2014 5:51 PM EDT2014-07-24 21:51:52 GMT
    A Minnesota man refuses to fly on Southwest Airlines after he says his family was briefly removed from their flight over a critical tweet. Duff Watson was boarding as a priority flyer with Southwest when an agent refused to allow his two children, ages 6 and 9, who had later boarding times, to board with him, according to NBC's affiliate KARE. Watson said he warned the agent that he'd tweet about the incident, which he did. "RUDEST AGENT IN DENVER. KIMBERLY S. GATE C39. NOT HAPP...More >>
    A Minnesota man refuses to fly on Southwest Airlines after he says his family was briefly removed from their flight over a critical tweet. Duff Watson was boarding as a priority flyer with Southwest when an agent refused to allow his two children, ages 6 and 9, who had later boarding times, to board with him, according to NBC's affiliate KARE. Watson said he warned the agent that he'd tweet about the incident, which he did. "RUDEST AGENT IN DENVER. KIMBERLY S. GATE C39. NOT HAPP...More >>
  • Survivor: 'I was so scared' in Tornado that Killed 2 at Campground

    Survivor: 'I was so scared' in Tornado that Killed 2 at Campground

    Thursday, July 24 2014 5:43 PM EDT2014-07-24 21:43:39 GMT
    (CNN) -- The voices in the video tell the story."Something crazy is going on outside," a woman shouts. "I'm scared."Moments later, the same voice yells that a tree has fallen and another says, "It's on that guy's camper."Overturned campers, downed treesThe footage posted on the website of CNN affiliate WAVY came from the Cherrystone Family Camping Resort on the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia, where a tornado on Thursday toppled campers and sent trees crashing onto vehicles.State Police spokeswoma...More >>
    (CNN) -- The voices in the video tell the story."Something crazy is going on outside," a woman shouts. "I'm scared."Moments later, the same voice yells that a tree has fallen and another says, "It's on that guy's camper."Overturned campers, downed treesThe footage posted on the website of CNN affiliate WAVY came from the Cherrystone Family Camping Resort on the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia, where a tornado on Thursday toppled campers and sent trees crashing onto vehicles.State Police spokeswoma...More >>
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KCEN. All Rights Reserved. Users of this site agree to the Terms of Service, Privacy Notice/Your California Privacy Rights, and Ad Choices.