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Category: 7th Infantry Division


JBLM losing one of its team players as Fires Brigade’s Col. Kamper moves on

Col. Ken Kamper doesn’t miss much at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. He’s there when his artillery troops come home from war. He’s there to pay respects when soldiers fall in combat. And Kamper almost always says yes when South Sound communities come looking for an officer in uniform to represent the Army outside the base.

The two-time Iraq veteran who spent eight of the past 10 years at the base south of Tacoma is moving on after two and a half years leading about 2,500 soldiers in the base’s artillery brigade. His 17th Fires Brigade is one of four large Army

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JBLM to lose a Stryker brigade and more soldiers in coming years

Joint Base Lewis-McChord will lose about 4,500 positions for active-duty soldiers over the next few years as the Army reduces its overall strength coming out of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a briefing given this morning to Puget Sound congressmen.

Defense officials today told Rep. Denny Heck, D-Olympia, that the Army plans to deactivate Lewis-McChord’s 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. That unit contains about 4,000 soldiers, about 1,000 of whom are finishing a deployment in Afghanistan’s Kandahar Province.

Heck was told the Army also would close or reduce other units at Lewis-McChord. The Army in January released

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JBLM using outreach and discipline to address rising numbers of military sex assaults

A fast-developing sexual assault prevention program at Joint Base Lewis-McChord has the Army mustering up new victim advocates, spreading a “zero tolerance” message down the ranks and cracking down on misbehavior in the barracks.

It’s intended to reverse a rising number of reported military sexual assaults across the Armed Forces that is fraying relationships among service members and causing lawmakers to consider changes to the Army’s justice system.

“When you have sexual assault in the military, it breaks down the fabric of trust in our organization,” said Maj. Gen. Stephen Lanza, who this week canceled training activities

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It’s official: The 7th ID is so entrenched at JBLM that its troops can sing its tune

Last fall, the Army toasted the arrival of a two-star general and a new headquarters for a reactivated division at Joint Base Lewis-McChord with a sunny ceremony on its main parade ground.

The day had all the pomp of a military ceremony – speeches, canons and rows of soldiers standing shoulder to shoulder unwilling to scratch any itch.

It all went well until the base’s brass band broke into the official but forgotten tune for the revived 7th Infantry Division. Soldiers had not sung it in the seven years the 7th ID went dark before the Army brought the headquarters

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Former JBLM commander headed to South Korea as slots for generals change hands

The military’s summer shuffle of command assignments is shaking up a few of the top posts at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

Two deputy commanding generals for Lewis-McChord’s I Corps on Wednesday said goodbye to the base.

One, Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Buchanan, is moving on to command all Army installations in the Washington, D.C. area. The other, Canadian Brig. Gen. Jean-Marc Lanthier, is returning to a command assignment in Quebec.

Meanwhile, a recent I Corps commander is heading to South Korea.

Lt. Gen. Curtis “Mike” Scaparrotti, who only last June came home with Lewis-McChord’s headquarters from a yearlong assignment in

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Australian two star visits JBLM to tell troops “It’s good to have you back” on watch in the Pacific

An Australian two-star general is visiting Joint Base Lewis-McChord this week with a message about the Army’s reinvigorated focus on the Pacific.

“It’s good to have you back,” said Maj. Gen. Rick Burr.

Burr is making the rounds in the Northwest as the deputy commanding general for U.S. Army Pacific in Hawaii. It’s a new position, and it’s intended to be reserved for Australians in the years ahead.

U.S. Army Pacific leads about 60,000 soldiers in Hawaii, Alaska, South Korea and at Lewis-McChord. It answers to the Defense Department’s Pacific Command under Adm. Samuel Locklear.

Burr’s position is one of

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“Six months is long enough:” Accelerating drawdown has Stryker soldiers coming home early from Afghanistan

Sgt. Ryan Ellenberger’s 2-month-old son left him speechless.

He held the baby for the first time Thursday in a Joint Base Lewis-McChord gymnasium when the soldier came home from his Stryker unit’s shortened tour in Afghanistan.

Tears welled up in Ellenberger’s eyes. His wife, Summer, leaned over to give him a long kiss.

Their ecstatic expressions conveyed far more than they could express out loud.

“It’s amazing. Words can’t describe it. I just can’t,” he said as he held Ryan Jr. with the baby’s eyes fixing on dad’s.

Their reunion took place four months earlier than the family expected when

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Marines saving money on vehicle upgrades by turning to Army’s extra Stryker parts

Some of the Army’s extra Stryker replacement parts will be headed to an underfunded Marine vehicle renovation project.

The Marines’ Light Armored Vehicle program stands to benefit from the Army’s Stryker inventory, according to a Marine report from last month.

It’s starting with about $400,000 in savings by acquiring already produced Stryker steering and battery parts.

“With the Department of Defense entering a period of fiscal austerity, we found a way to save the Marine Corps a significant amount of taxpayer dollars,” Col. Mark Brinkman, the program manager for LAV, told a Marine writer. “The initial savings with

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