"Sappers In!"



Colonel Blace E. Albert

  Colonel Blace C. Albert was born in Charlottesville, Virginia. He graduated from the United States Military Academy with a Bachelor's Degree in Aerospace Engineering and was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Corps of Engineers in 1991. COL Albert's military service began at Fort Bragg, NC where he served as a Sapper platoon leader (TF EN for 3-504 IN), equipment platoon leader, and company executive  officer in the 307th  EN BN (ABN). After completing the Engineer Officer  Advanced Course, COL Albert was assigned to the 326th EN BN (AASLT) at Fort Campbell, KY where he was the 1/101st IN Brigade Engineer and commanded the 887th  EN CO (LE). Following company command, COL Albert taught in the Department of Civil and Mechanical  Engineering at the United  States Military Academy prior to attending the Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, KS. In 2004, COL Albert was assigned to the 65th EN BN at Schofield Barracks and deployed to Afghanistan as the Cj37 Engineer Planner. He became the 53 of the battalion upon redeployment and transformed it into 3/25th IBCT's Brigade Special Troops Battalion (BSTB). In 2006, COL Albert deployed to Iraq as the Bronco Brigade ' s MiTT Chief. Six months prior to redeployment, he became Bronco 3 and served as the operations officer for 15 months. In 2008, COL Albert was assigned to Fort Polk where he served as the 4/10th MTN's rear detachment commander. He commanded the 4th BSTB from March 2009  to January 2012, during which time he deployed to Afghanistan. COL Albert  served as 4/10th MTN's Deputy Commanding Officer for six months prior to attending the Army War College in Carlisle Barracks, PA and serving as the senior advisor for infrastructure at the U.S. Army's Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute. COL Albert has Master's Degrees in Engineering Management from the University of Missouri, Rolla (now Missouri S&T), Mechanical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College.  He is also a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Virginia. COL Albert's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star (w/2 OLC), the Meritorious Service Medal (w/4 OLC), the Army Commendation Medal (w/OLC), the Army Achievement Medal (w/OLC), Combat  Action  Badge, Ranger Tab, Sapper Tab, Senior Parachutist  Badge, Air Assault Badge, and the Bronze Order of the de Fleury Medal. COL Albert is married to the former Kelly Spears of Fayetteville, NC and they have two children: Tayler (20) who is a senior at the University of New Orleans and Garrett (18) who starts his freshman year at the University of Pittsburgh.


Command Sergeant Major John Etter

CSM Etter is a native of Ft. Smith, AR.  He is a 1983 graduate from Southside High School in Ft. Smith and attended the University of Arkansas.  He entered the Army on 23 March 1987 under the spilt option program and graduated from basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO in June 1987 and received his AIT MOS 12B Combat Engineer at FLW in June 1988.  He is currently in his 23rd year of military service. His duties and assignments consist of; Command Sergeant Major, 11th EN BN, Ft. Benning, GA., Operations Sergeant Major, 20th EN BN, Ft. Hood, TX., (OIF), First Sergeant, 510th Sapper Co, 20th EN BN, Ft. Hood, TX., (OIF), BN Operations Sergeant, HHC, 44th EN BN, 2BCT, Ft. Carson, CO., (OIF), First Sergeant, C Co, 44th EN BN, 2nd ID, Camp Howse, Korea, (OIF), BN Operations Sergeant, HHC, 2-39 INF BN, Ft. Jackson, S.C.,  Sr. Drill Sergeant, A Co, 2-39 INF BN, Ft. Jackson, S.C.,  Platoon Sergeant, HHC and C Co, 307th EN BN, 82nd ABN DIV, Ft. Bragg, N.C., Special Operations Engineer, SFOD-D, Ft. Bragg, N.C., Sapper Leader Course Instructor, 577th EN BN and 169th EN BN, Ft. Leonard Wood, Mo., Squad Leader, B Co and HHC, 307th EN BN, 82nd ABN DIV, Ft. Bragg, N.C., Team Leader, B Co, 1st EN BN, 1st ID, Ft. Riley, KS., (Gulf War), Combat Engineer, B Co, 1st EN BN, 1st ID, Ft. Riley, KS., Combat Engineer, D Co, 489th EN Detachment, United States Army Reserve, Fayetteville, AR. His military education includes; Command and General Staff College Battalion and Brigade level, Sergeants Major Academy (Class 59), Drill Sergeant School, Combat Life Savers Course, SERE School (High Risk and Survival), Advanced Noncommissioned Officers Course, Pathfinder School, Mountain Warfare School (Summer and Winter), Sapper School, Air Assault School, Jumpmaster Course, Jungle Warfare School, Ranger School, Equal Opportunity Course, Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course, Airborne School, Foreign Weapons Course, Special Forces Assessment and Selection Course, Primary Leadership Development Course. His military awards and decorations include; Bronze Star Medal (2nd Award), Meritorious Service Medal (6th Award), Army Commendation Medal (4th Award), Army Achievement Medal (7th Award), Army Valorous Unit Award, Army Meritorious Unit Award, Army Superior Unit Award, Navy Unit Commendation Award, Good Conduct Medal (7th Award), National Defense Service Medal (w/ 1 Bronze Service Star), Korean Service Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal (w/ 3 Bronze Service Stars), NCO Professional Development Ribbon (w/ Numeral 4), Overseas Service Ribbon (3rd Award), Army Service Ribbon, Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia), Kuwait Liberation Medal (Government of Kuwait), Iraq Campaign Medal (w/ 2 Bronze Service Stars), Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Combat Action Badge, Drill Sergeant Badge, Master Parachutes Badge, Pathfinder Badge, Air Assault Badge, Ranger Tab, Sapper Tab, Rams Head Device and The Bronze Order of the de Fleury Medal.


130th Engineer Brigade provides trained and ready engineer modular forces; integrates and provides engineer mission command; deploys and conducts engineer operations in support of decisive operations in a joint and combined environment.

A Fit, Disciplined and Values-Based Team that sustains Enduring, Superior Performance – Dependable for our Technical Expertise and Tactical Prowess by Anyone We Support, Anytime, Anywhere!  
 130th Engineer Brigade Lineage

The 130th Engineer Brigade is a combat engineer brigade of the United States Army. The Brigade left Germany in 2007 and recently transferred from the command of V Corps to United States Army Pacific. The Brigade uncased its colors in Hawaii on Oct. 23, 2008.

The 130th Engineer Brigade was originally constituted in the U.S. Army as the 1303rd Engineer General Service Regiment and activated on July 15, 1943 at Camp Ellis, Illinois. The regiment played an important role in World War II with campaign credits for Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace, Central Europe and the Asian-Pacific theatre. The regiment was deactivated on July 8, 1955 and its elements allocated to the regular Army.

It was re-designated as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 130th Engineer Aviation Brigade in Japan and subsequently inactivated on June 25, 1956. On June 16, 1969, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 130th Engineer Aviation Brigade was re-designated as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 130th Engineer Brigade and activated in Hanau, Germany.

From December 1995 to January 1996 all units in the brigade, except the 320th Engineer Company (Topographic), deployed to Croatia or Bosnia and Herzegovina in support of Operation Joint Endeavor. (The 320th Engineer Company deployed their topographic surveying platoon the following year.) In December 1995, the 502nd Engineer Company deployed to Zupanja, Croatia and placed the historic ribbon bridge over the Sava River. The company operated 24-hours a day for three months crossing critical traffic in support of Task Force Eagle and IFOR. The company also assisted in the construction of the first fixed bridge over the Sava River in Brcko-Gunja. The 502nd Engineer Company redeployed in May 1996, with a rafting section remaining at Slavonski Brod to support the force restructuring of Task Force Eagle.

Units of the 130th Engineer Brigade were deployed to Kuwait in early 2003 and moved into Iraq in March where they supported Operation Iraqi Freedom with bridging and infrastructure support. The 565th Engineer Battalion built the “birthday bridge” – the longest float bridge constructed in a combat theatre with a span of 580 meters – over the Tigris River in Tikrit on Saddam Hussein’s birthday, April, 28 2003.

The 502nd Engineer Company also conducted river patrol operations in Baghdad and Tikrit. This new mission for the company was essential for force protection, troop transportation, search and cordon operations and to protect against sabotage on fixed bridges. In September 2003, with the inactivation of the 38th Engineer Company (Medium Girder Bridge), the 502nd Engineer Company became a multi-role bridge company with both float and fixed bridging capabilities and the only bridge company in support of USAREUR.

Brigade units redeployed to Hanau in late 2003 and early 2004. The 502nd Engineer Company became the first V Corp company-size unit to return for a second tour in Iraq when it deployed in September 2004. The company returned to Hanau in September 2005. The brigade deployed to Iraq again in September 2005; and the 54th Engineer Battalion followed in October, returning in October 2006.

The 130th Engineer Brigade said goodbye to Hanau with a casing of the colors ceremony on Pioneer Kaserne on May 4, 2007. The brigade headquarters become part of U.S. Army Pacific on June 16, 2007. The brigade had originally been slated to relocate to Fort Lewis to replace the 555th Engineer Brigade, which was scheduled to be inactivated. But with the Army’s recent authorized increased end strength the brigade remains on active duty. The 130th Engineer Brigade uncased their colors in Hawaii in 2008.

Shoulder Sleeve Insignia: Scarlet and white are the colors used for Engineer organizations. The bar refers to a lever, support, fastener or a measuring device and other facets of engineering operations, the embattlements denoting the military aspects of the Brigade. In numerology, three is the symbol for completeness.

Distinctive Unit Insignia: The embattle tower was suggested by the unit’s shoulder sleeve insignia. The 130th Engineer Brigade’s five battle honors (Normandy, Northern France, Rhineland, Ardennes-Alsace and Central Europe) are represented by the three merlons of the tower, the spade and bayonet. The masoned tower with the spade also symbolizes the unit’s engineering achievements while the bayonet alludes to the combat readiness of the Brigade. Scarlet and white are the colors used by Engineers.

Former organization (Germany)

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 130th Engineer Brigade
54th Engineer Battalion (Combat Mechanized)
94th Engineer Battalion (Combat Heavy)
565th Engineer Battalion
38th Engineer Company
320th Engineer Company (Topography)
502nd Engineer Company (Multi-Role Bridge)
Future organization (Hawaii)

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 130th Engineer Brigade
65th Engineer Battalion
84th Engineer Battalion