Happy Independence Day 
Colonel Wayne Marotto ’85 Perseveres  in the  Global War on Terrorism
The year is 2008 and Operation Iraqi Freedom is underway.  Col. Wayne Marotto, with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team,  1st Armored Division, is deployed out of Baumholder, Germany during a blizzard and lands seven hours later in the searing Kuwaiti heat.  Two weeks later he moves north to Baghdad through the hot, dusty desert to Forward Operating Base Hammer.  The Brigade will move three times more during its 15-month deployment, from FOB Hammer to Camp Striker, and finally to FOB Falcon. This is the first of Col. Marotto’s five deployments in support of the Global War on Terrorism. 
Marotto’s character building began early in life as a small child of divorced parents and one of three children supported by a single mom. “My mother influenced me to work hard and be resilient,” he said.  

He also credits his paternal grandfather as a strong role model.  “After my parents’ divorce, my father was not in my life. My grandfather filled that void.”  

After graduating from high school in Dallas and coming to The University of Texas at Austin, Marotto pledged Kappa Sigma in 1985. “I thought the actives were good guys and people I could become part of a team with,” he said. One of his Tau brothers, Nixon Daughtrey (Tau ’87), introduced him to a sorority girl who is now his wife of 29 years.  He also recalls Gary Tesch (Tau ’83) and Ricky Morris (Tau ’85) as being “two stand-out guys.”    

In 1986 he enlisted in the Army Reserve, prompted by a paternal history of military service going back to the Civil War and the need for financial assistance, which the GI Bill would provide. After attending Basic Training at Fort Dix, NJ, he returned to UT and was accepted into the UT Army ROTC program.  He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in 1988 and attended Infantry Officer Basic Course at Fort Benning, GA.  Following IOBC, he took a break from the military and returned to private life.  
But after the 9/11 terrorist attacks on America in 2001, he answered the call to serve his country in support of the Global War on Terrorism.  Following his 15-month deployment during the Operation Iraqi Freedom surge, he returned to Germany for 14 months and then deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait to continue OIF and begin Operation New Dawn.  
After returning to Germany for two and a half years, he would once again deploy to Kuwait with the US Army Central/Third Army for Combined Joint Task Force — Operation Inherent Resolve to Defeat the Islamic State.  

He is currently assigned to US Army Central, with the Main Headquarters at Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter, SC and a Forward Command Headquarters at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait. USARCENT is a 3-star command, with its higher headquarters the Department of the Army and US Central Command. Their center of gravity is the Middle East where they have been ensconced since the end of Desert Storm. USARCENT has a 20-country area of operations in the Levant, Arabian Gulf, and Central Asia. They support five named operations: Operation Spartan Shield, Operation Inherent Resolve, Operation Freedom's Sentinel, Operation Resolute Support, and Task Force Sinai. He currently serves as the Public Affairs Officer for LTG Mike Garrett and USARCENT. 

Marotto, a man of strong Christian faith, regards his promotion to Colonel in the Army as his greatest professional achievement. But on a personal level, his marriage to his wife, Amy, and their two children bring him his greatest joy and deepest gratification.
Marotto watching the Texas vs. OU game in 2008 at FOB Hammer in Iraq. The game was telecast on American Forces Network.
A proud Kappa Sig Tau alumnus, he has donated generously to both the Tau 125 and Tau Legacy Capital Campaigns and looks forward to returning to Texas after retiring from the Army.  “I plan on having land, horses, and at least one longhorn,” he said.
What advice would he offer the Tau Chapter’s current actives?  “Work hard, persevere, be resilient. Show up 10 minutes early for work and meetings. Pay attention to details, be disciplined, be kind, and take care of your family. Be proud of your country and love it.  We live in the best country in the world.”  

To learn more about the mission of USARCENT, please go to: 
The Kappa Sigma Tau Chapter sends its gratitude to Colonel Marotto ’85 and all the brave men and women who serve in the U.S. military and sacrifice so much to fight terrorism around the world and protect America’s homeland.  
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