What is now designated the 29th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (IBCT) is actually the result of a consolidation of two units that formed nearly 70 years ago: Company E of the 298th Infantry Regiment, created in 1947, and the 120th Signal Support Company, constituted in 1953. It was the latter that first had the 29th numerical designation when it was converted to the 29th Infantry Brigade in 1959. Ten years later, it was inducted into Federal serviced for a seven-month period, followed by 26 years of serving under state control. It was consolidated with the 297th Supply and Service Battalion in 1995, retaining its designation until 2007 when the U.S. Army, as part of its move toward an organizational structure based on combat brigades as opposed to divisions, redesignated it under its current name.

The saga of Company E, on the other hand, is considerably more complicated. Over the years leading up to its consolidation with the 29th Infantry Brigade, it was designated as Infantry, Antiaircraft Artillery, Missile, Artillery, and Supply and Service. The 29th IBCT’s support heritage shone brightly in November 2008, when its 29th Support Battalion was deployed to Kuwait in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. For its work in Camp Logistics Support Area, the unit was awarded a Meritorious Unit Commendation in 2013.

A glance at the brigade’s Unit Crest, or Distinctive Unit Insignia, recalls the design employed on the brigade’s Unit Patch (shoulder sleeve insignia) and Combat Service Identification Badge. All three feature a cross with barbs on the four corners; the shape reflects the fact that Hawaii has long been known as the “Crossroads of the Pacific,” and the arrows stand for the mission of defense and protection with which the brigade has been tasked. The motto “Ka Oihana Mamua,” translated “Mission First,” not only emphasizes the brigade’s dedication to service for its originating state and the whole country, but its Hawaiian roots as well.

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