Hundreds of soldiers return to Fort Bragg after Middle East deployment

Cumberland County News

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP/WNCN) – In January, thousands of paratroopers assigned to Fort Bragg’s 82nd Airborne Division’s Immediate Response Force were sent to the Middle East with little notice amid rising tensions with Iran.

Four months later, the base they return to is much different.

COVID-19 restrictions prohibit the traditional welcome home fanfare.

Nearly 300 paratroopers from the Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team, Combat Aviation Brigade, and other members of the Immediate Response Force returned to Fort Bragg Friday.

Over the next three weeks, 2,500 more soldiers who were suddenly deployed will be required to quarantine upon return.

Soldiers will be quarantined for 14 days either on base or at home to prevent the spread of the virus. But loved ones were still determined to cheer on their return.

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