Rapp Welcomes 56th Stryker Brigade to New, State-of-the-Art Readiness Center
4/16/2010

Representative Rapp welcomes 120 soldiers from Company C of the elite 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team to the new state-of-the art Bradford Readiness Center during the official ribbon cutting ceremony.   Located at Bradford Regional Airport, this 28,000 square foot training facility strategically combines Army and National Guard units from the former Bradford and Ridgway armories in support of the Army's highly versatile Stryker armored combat vehicle.

Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren/Forest/McKean), a member of the Pennsylvania House Veterans Affairs and Emergency Preparedness Committee, was honored to welcome 120 soldiers from Company C of the elite 56th Stryker Brigade Combat Team to the new, state-of-the-art Bradford Readiness Center during Thursday’s official ribbon cutting ceremony. 

“With approximately 15,000 members of the Pennsylvania National Guard and Reserve proudly serving in extremely dangerous conditions both at home and around the globe, it is now more important than ever that we provide them with the best possible training facilities,” said Rapp.

“With a proud history dating back 260 years to Benjamin Franklin, the brave men and women that we are truly privileged to welcome to McKean County today continue to perform above and beyond the call of duty in America’s ongoing war and peace time reconstruction efforts.   Whether they’re serving in a combat zone or delivering emergency relief for natural disaster victims to secure our home land, every Pennsylvanian can take great pride in the extraordinary dedication and teamwork displayed by our citizen soldiers.” 

Located at Bradford Regional Airport, this 28,000 square foot readiness center strategically combines Army and National Guard units from the former Bradford, McKean County and Ridgway, Elk County, armories in support of the Army’s highly versatile Stryker armored combat vehicle.  Weighing in at 19 tons, the Stryker is designed to provide America’s armed forces with a family of 10 different vehicles that can be readily deployed by C-130 aircraft and instantaneously combat ready upon arrival on the battle field.    

Called to active duty and sent to in Iraq in September 2008, the 56th Stryker Brigade was part of the largest, history-making combat deployment of Pennsylvania troops since World War II.   In August 2005, members of Company C were deployed in Louisiana to deliver humanitarian aid to Hurricane Katrina victims as part of Operation Independence Relief.       

“By working together as a united federal, state and local team we were able to secure 23 acres of land to make the Bradford Readiness Center a reality,” said Rapp, who also took part in the groundbreaking ceremony in April 2008.  “Not only will the Bradford Readiness Center play an integral and prominent role in keeping America’s armed forces the best prepared and best equipped in world, it will provide much-needed, economic firepower benefiting our local and regional economies in terms of good-paying, recession proof jobs.” 

With 2,500 square feet more than the two older armories in Bradford and Ridgway combined, the Bradford Readiness Center contains an assembly hall and kitchen space, battalion and company administrative space, classrooms, locker rooms, storage and an arms vault. 

Rep. Kathy Rapp
65th District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives

(814) 723-5203
RepRapp.com
Contact:  Ty McCauslin
(717) 772-9979 

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