Fort Bragg civilians working OT this month to make sure soldiers ready to deploy

Cumberland County News

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (WNCN) — Since the rapid deployments of thousands of Fort Bragg soldiers, civilian workers at the Soldier Readiness Centers have been working overtime to get the next round of soldiers ready to go if they get the call.

“Our staff literally went from 28 to around 73 covering day and night shift,” said Carlton Marlowe, a health tech supervisor at Pope Soldier Readiness Center.

“Making sure their labs are drawn, making sure they’re immunized, making sure they’re not only mentally, but physically, able to deploy based off a series of health assessments that we use to determine that factor,” Marlowe added.

Soldiers also must take neurocognitive assessments within 12 months of a deployment. The results are used to help treat and study traumatic brain injuries or concussions — if should they happen.

“You don’t want a soldier to go down range without their assessment, and if they sustain an injury and you don’t have a clear picture of how their mind works,” said Latasha Brown, a neuropsychometrist.

Brown and coworker William Jacobs rotated 12-hour shifts to test more than 5,000 soldiers earlier this month.

“People are coming over by the thousands. You’ve got the hallway jammed elbow-to-elbow in there — it goes on non-stop,’ Jacobs said.

“We just jumped right into it,” said Martha Brown, a mobilization and deployment program manager.  

Her team balances the needs of the military, with what the soldiers and their families need, from answering tax and finance questions to coordinating childcare.  

“It’s truly a blessing to be able to do a job that you truly enjoy, and to know that it’s actually making an impact on families and their soldiers,” Brown said.

“When the call goes up, all they have to worry about is loading themselves and their equipment on the plane and deploying,” Marlowe said.

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