New building result of Cobra Gold partnership

| March 1, 2018 | 0 Comments

Service members from the Kingdom of Thailand, United States, China, and a Buddhist Monk stand before a newly constructed, multi-purpose building, Feb. 22, 2018 during a ceremony in Korat, Kingdom of Thailand. The building was constructed at Nongphipadungkitwittaya School, and was officially opened during the ceremony. It was built by Royal Thai Army Soldiers from the 3rd Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, U.S. Army Soldiers from the 411th Engineer Battalion, 9th Mission Support Command, and Chinese Peoples Liberation Army Soldiers from the 74th Group Army, during Exercise Cobra Gold 2018. Cobra Gold 18 maintains a consistent focus on Humanitarian Civic Assistance, community engagement, and medical activities conducted during the exercise to support the needs and humanitarian interests of civilian populations around the region. Exercise Cobra Gold 2018 is an annual exercise conducted in the Kingdom of Thailand held from Feb. 13-23 with seven full participating nations. (U.S. Army Photo by Staff Sgt. Justin Silvers)

Story and photos by
Army Staff Sgt. Justin Silvers
III Marine Expeditionary Force

KORAT, Thailand — Military service members from the Kingdom of Thailand, the United States and China, plus school educators and members of the local community gathered together to see the official opening of a newly constructed building during a ceremony, here, Feb. 22.

The multipurpose building was built at Nongphipadungkitwittaya School during Exercise Cobra Gold 2018.
Cobra Gold 18 maintains a consistent focus on humanitarian civic assistance, community engagement and medical activities conducted during the exercise to support the needs and humanitarian interests of civilian populations around the region.

The building was constructed by Royal Thai Army Soldiers from the 3rd Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division.
U.S. Army Soldiers from the 411th Eng. Bn., 9th Mission Support Command, and Chinese Peoples Liberation Army Soldiers from the 74th Group Army, helped with one of six Engineering Civic Assistance Projects during the exercise. The building is planned to be used for student education as well as other community activities.

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Henry L. Tennant, commander of the 411th Engineer Battalion, and a student from Nongphipadungkitwittaya School, prepare to pile soil over a tree at as part of a ceremony, Feb. 22, 2018 in Korat,Kingdom of Thailand. During the ceremony, a newly constructed, multi-purpose building was officially opened at the school. The building was constructed by Royal Thai Army Soldiers from the 3rd Engineer Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, U.S. Army Soldiers from the 411th Engineer Battalion, 9th Mission Support Command, and Chinese Peoples Liberation Army Soldiers from the 74th Group Army, during exercise Cobra Gold 2018. Cobra Gold 18 maintains a consistent focus on Humanitarian Civic Assistance, community engagement, and medical activities conducted during the exercise to support the needs and humanitarian interests of civilian populations around the region. Exercise Cobra Gold 2018 is an annual exercise conducted in the Kingdom of Thailand held from Feb. 13-23 with seven full participating nations. (U.S. Army Photo by Staff Sgt. Justin Silvers)

The ceremony began with groups of students from Nongphipadungkitwittaya School performing dances on stage called Kissadapiniharn and Chab Krab. Following the dances, the students presented silk scarves to commanders and service members as a gesture welcoming them to the Kingdom of Thailand.

After being presented the scarves, service members from the Royal Thai Army, the U.S. Army, the People’s Liberation Army and the director of the Office of Nakhonratchasima Primary-Educational Service Area 3 spoke to the community and service members in attendance.

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Henry L. Tennant, commander of the 411th Eng. Bn., spoke on behalf of U.S. Army engineers involved in the project.

“It is an honor to be here today, to express (our) gratitude for sharing time with us today at this dedication ceremony,” said Tennant. “There was a great deal of camaraderie during the construction – the locals, the Royal Thai Army, the U.S. Army and the People’s Liberation Army working together to complete the same goal, this memorable building.

“They worked side by side as they learned and exchanged ideas and techniques. They laughed, joked and really got to bond with each other. This experience will always be embedded in their minds and hearts, and I hope you all feel the same way. We don’t want to say this is a goodbye, but rather as the beginning of a beautiful relationship.”

Following their speeches, Tennant and other commanders in attendance toured the building, while Phratham Worranayok, provincial primate adviser of Nakhon Ratchasima and Buddist monk, blessed the building.
Upon exiting the building, commanders stopped at designated trees in front of the multipurpose building and together with students, helped pour soil over the trees. The ceremony concluded with the unveiling of the building’s sign, officially opening the building up to the community.

Exercise Cobra Gold 2018 is an annual exercise conducted in the Kingdom of Thailand held from Feb. 13-23 with seven full participating nations.

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