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Col. Sean T. Boyette - Commander, 164th ADA
Command Sgt. Maj. Ronald Sachs - CSM, 164th ADA

Year in Review - 2021

It was a year of duty and selfless service for the Soldiers in the 164th Air Defense Artillery (ADA) Brigade as they simultaneously supported numerous federal and state operations.

The brigade achieved an unprecedented mobilization rate of over 40 percent of its personnel deployed either home or abroad. The brigade headquarters led the COVID-19 task force supporting vaccination efforts throughout the entire state of Florida in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Soldiers worked alongside civilian partners at dozens of sites to provide administrative and logistical support.

While Soldiers continued to support response efforts, the brigade also increased readiness and honed its members' warrior skills by preparing for the Army’s overhauled marksmanship qualification (which simulates combat situations more effectively than the previous Individual Weapons Qualification) and ensuring Soldiers physically prepared for the Army Combat Fitness Test.

In April, Alpha Battery, 1-265th ADA Battalion was awarded the Hamilton Award in recognition for outstanding performance as an elite ADA battery. The Hamilton Award recognizes ADA batteries for their outstanding technical skill and tactical prowess. The award was presented by the Air Defense Artillery Commandant and Regimental Command Sergeant Major at Camp Blanding Joint Training Center during Annual Training.

In addition, four outstanding Soldiers from 1-265th ADA Battalion were presented the Honorable Order of Saint Barbara in recognition of their leadership, proficiency and contributions to the ADA branch.

Due to increasing demand requirements for air defense artillery support, Soldiers from A/1- 265th ADA BN supported a National Training Center rotation in Fort Irwin, CA, less than a year after demobilizing from the National Capital Region. Those Soldiers joined nearly 3,000 Soldiers from the 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team (ABCT), Mississippi National Guard, for Decisive Action Rotation 21-08. They successfully engaged and destroyed a myriad of targets, including fixed wing, rotary wing, and unmanned aerial systems threats, allowing 155 ABCT freedom of maneuver in order to successfully accomplish their assigned objectives.

The 3-265th ADA Battalion supported simultaneous federal missions in support of the National Capital Region and Operation Spartan Shield (OSS). In July, 3-265th ADA Battalion welcomed home Charlie Battery following an eight-month rotation to the National Capital Region (NCR). This was the battalion’s fifth rotation to the NCR since 9/11 in support of Operation Noble Eagle, providing ground-based air defense.

Even after supporting COVID-19 operations for over four continuous months, Soldiers from the 3-116th Field Artillery Battalion conducted annual training in August at Camp Blanding. The battalion conducted a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System live fire exercise with 66 rockets in order to sustain proficiency on section certification and Mission Essential Tasks.

In August, continuing its fourth year of back-to-back mobilizations, the 164th ADA Brigade headquarters mobilized for their second deployment to Germany in support of the European Deterrence Initiative (EDI). While deployed, they provide mission command of U.S. Air and Missile Defense forces spread out over four countries and two continents and participate in several multinational joint exercises to build capability and capacity while enhancing the NATO alliance in order to deter aggression.

In October, the 715th Military Police (MP) Company returned home from a short-notice yearlong mobilization to support the Southwest Border Mission. They monitored over 85 miles of international border spanning across two states.

Bravo battery, 3-265th ADA Battalion returned in November from a year-long deployment to the Middle East in support of OSS. While they originally mobilized in support of the European Deterrence Initiative, the unit was redirected to deploy to U.S. Central Command and was the first Army National Guard ADA unit to deploy in support of OSS. Soldiers conducted short-range air defense missions in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, protecting critical assets and bases within the Arabian Peninsula.

Despite the high operational tempo of 2021, the Soldiers of the 164th Air Defense Artillery Brigade continue to remain technically, tactically and physically ready to support state and federal missions. The 164th ADA Brigade continues to focus on improving strength and overall unit readiness to posture for potential growth and modernization efforts.