LTC Steven D. Russell
Commanding Officer 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry
1st "Raider" Brigade 4th Infantry Division
LTC Steven D. Russell
hails from Del City, Oklahoma. He received his commission as an
in 1985 along with a BA in Public Speaking from Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas.
LTC Russell has served in Airborne, Light, and Mechanized assignments in the Arctic, the desert,
the Pacific and European Commands, and in the Continental United States.
He has also served as an Infantry Career Course small group instructor and as a doctrine writer.
LTC Russell has served nine years overseas and has deployed operationally to Kosovo, Kuwait, Afghanistan, and Iraq.
After graduating from the Command and Staff College in 1998,
LTC Russell served as the Secretary of the General Staff, 1st Infantry Division
and as the Task Force 1-26 Infantry S3 with the initial heavy entry force into Kosovo in June of 1999.
He then served as the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry (Blue Spaders) S3 and XO until selected
as the FORSCOM Commanders Aide-de-Camp in February of 2001.
During Operation ENDURING FREEDOM, LTC Russell deployed to Kuwait
in December of 2001 and served as the CFLCC Chief of Future Operations
and was responsible for operational combat planning in the Afghan area of operations.
From February to May 2002, he led an Afghan Army planning and training assistance force
working with the 3rd Special Forces Group in Kabul, Afghanistan, before returning to CFLCC.
LTC Russell was reassigned as G3, Chief of Current Operations, III Corps in September of 2002.
In June of 2003, LTC Russell assumed command of 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry
during Operation IRAQI FREEDOM and conducted combat operations in Tikrit, Iraq
from June of 2003 to March of 2004. LTC Russell has since redeployed the Regulars of 1-22 Infantry
to Fort Hood, Texas, where they prepare for future operations.
LTC Russell holds a Masters degree in History.
Among his numerous awards and decorations are the Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device and Oak Leaf Cluster,
the Combat Infantrymans Badge, and the National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Service Star.
He is married and has five children.
Steve Russell retired
from the Army in 2006 and was elected as a State Senator in the
from District 45 in August 2008.
He is the founder and
Chairman of Vets
For Victory and is on
the board of advisors of Vets
and continues to be a motivational speaker promoting patriotism and support for our nation and its military.
Kosovo: June - December 1999
1/26 IN "Blue Spaders"
LTC Steve Russell writes:
The 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry
Regiment deployed to Kosovo in June 1999 as a part of Operation
Joint Guardian II.
The American sector was created by a headquarters element of the 1st Infantry Division from Wurzburg, Germany called
"Task Force Falcon;" an inital entry mechanized Infantry company team from the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry and 1st Battalion,
1-77 Armor from Schweinfurt Germany; the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit from Camp Lejeune, North Carolina;
and the 2nd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment from Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
After these forces secured the
initial southeast portion of Kosovo with the French, a more
permanent force (also from the 1st Infantry Division)
began to arrive in June within days of the initial force. This force remained for a six-month period and its first element, Task Force
1-26 Infantry from Schweinfurt Germany, arrived in June and relieved the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit in early July.
I deployed in June with the
'Blue Spaders' as their Battalion Operations Officer. In the
photo above, Lieutenant Colonel Robert E. Scurlock, Jr.,
the commander; and Command Sergeant Major Carlton E. Dedrich, our battlion command sergeant major, are on the front row.
I am the man to the immediate left of Lieutenant Colonel Scurlock in the photo.
Camp Monteith when we first arrived - June 1999
The sign says it all - Major Steve Russell on far right
Observing hostile fire in Cernica - 5 July 1999
City of Gnjilane from our sniper position
Silovo Serbian Orthodox Church
Steve Russell on left
Left, Major Steve Russell - Right, Lieutenant Colonel Bob Scurlock
Both holding captured Thompson M1A1 submachine guns
MAJ Jurney, LtCol Schwankel, LTC Scurlock & MAJ Steve Russell
Operation Enduring Freedom:
December 2001 - July 2002
LTC Steve Russell writes:
In December of 2001, I deployed
to Kuwait to serve as the Chief of Future Operations for the
Land Component Command (CFLCC) built around the 3rd United States Army. Our future operations team was responsible
for the operational level combat planning for the Afghanistan Area of Operations. Our plans were refined by Joint Forces
Special Operations Command and Joint Task Force-Mountain to become the tactical operations better known as 'Tora Bora'
and 'Anaconda.' Our team also worked the strategic and operational-level plans to tie together the International Security
and Assistance Force (ISAF) and developed the entire concept planning for the building of the Afghan National Army in support
of President Bush's national policy decision announced in late January 2002.
CFLCC developed a special team
for this purpose which I had the privilege to also lead. Our work
with the Afghan Minister of Defense and his deputies,
concept planning for the training of the army, participation in a UN Afghan Security Conference in Geneva, and most often,
just the plain old hard soldier work of operating in a dangerous environment and establishing the training of anti-Taliban soldiers
to make a better life for themselves and the future of Afghanistan. When the Afghanistan area of operation transitioned from
CFLCC to XVIII Airborne Corps/JTF-180--which we also planned--I transitioned back to Kuwait and remained there
until the end of July 2002 when I returned to the United States.
The men who helped build the Afghan army:
CPT George Harris, MAJ Ken Swanson, Capt Gene Redding (USMC), LTC Steve Russell, and MAJ John Buck
Building from the Ruins: With men of
the 3rd Special Forces Group in Kabul, Afghanistan, Spring 2002.
I am seated on the front left
next to Jim Burnside, XO of 3rd Special Forces Group and among some of the finest soldiers I have ever had the privilege to serve with.
LTC Steve Russell in the boneyard of destroyed Soviet Equipment
Having fun working a T-54 Northern Alliance tank
Tea time with Northern Alliance
Steve Russell is seated, second from left
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Iraq June 11, 2003
Col Donald Campbell,
former 1st Brigade Commander and current 4ID Chief of Staff,
passes the unit colors to Lt Col Steven Russell, incoming commander of 1-22 Infantry
at a change of command ceremony.
LTC Steve Russell with his command vehicle in Iraq leading Task Force 1-22
LTC Steve Russell, seen
Command Team 1-22 Infantry - Iraq
LTC Russell is kneeling, second from right
1-22 Regulars at the entrance to the
underground hiding place of Saddam Hussein
LTC Russell is in the rear, leaning on the toilet seat
LTC Steve Russell as Commanding Officer
Photo taken stateside after returning from Iraq
LTC Steve Russell's decorations
The following is the Wikipedia entry for Steve Russell:
Russell was born in Oklahoma
City, Oklahoma to Clyde E. "Gene" Russell and Donna J.
Porter Russell on May 25, 1963.
Russell grew up in Del City, Oklahoma. The youngest of three, Russell nearly died at birth due to an opposite blood type
with his mother. After weeks of intensive care, he recovered and would face several other brushes with death. At the age of seven,
Russell was nearly killed by the deadly tornado that hit near Lake Eufala, Oklahoma on June 11, 1970 while visiting his grandparents.
Later that year, Russell nearly died from a ruptured appendix and underwent two surgeries with weeks of intensive care
at Midwest City Hospital.
Russell attended school at Del City Elementary and Kerr Junior High. He became a Christian reading a Gideon's New Testament
he picked up at Kerr in 1977. Graduating from Del City High in 1981, Russell was President of his senior class and voted
most likely to succeed. After earning a four-year Army ROTC scholarship, Russell attended Ouachita Baptist University
in Arkadelphia, Arkansas. After graduating with a degree in Public Speaking, Russell was commissioned a Second Lieutenant
in the U.S. Army Infantry.
Receiving his Infantry training at Fort Benning, Georgia, Russell married Cindy Myers, whom he met at Ouachita,
on December 21, 1985. Russell would graduate from the U.S. Army Infantry School Officers Basic Course,
Airborne School, Mortar School and a year later from the rigorous U.S. Army Ranger School in Class 11-87.
Russell served 21 years in Airborne, Light and Mechanized assignments in the Arctic, the desert, the Pacific, in Europe
and in the Continental United States. He served more than 7 years overseas and deployed operationally to Kosovo,
Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq.
During Operation Iraqi Freedom, Russell commanded the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry 'Regulars' and conducted combat
in Tikrit, Iraq from the spring of 2003 to the spring of 2004. His task force was a part of Colonel James Hickey's 1st Brigade,
4th Infantry Division. Russell's battalion was broadly covered during the first year of the war by CNN, Fox News Channel, ABC,
NBC, CBS, TIME, Associated Press and Reuters. His unit was a central player in the hunt and capture of Saddam Hussein
and has been featured in the Discovery Channel's Ace in the Hole and BBC Panorama's 'Saddam on the Run' documentaries.
Russell is highly decorated, having received the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device and Oak Leaf Cluster,
the Combat Infantryman's Badge and his unit in Iraq was awarded the Valorous Unit Award for its role in the hunt and capture
of Saddam Hussein.
Turning down a Queen's University Fellowship to Kingston, Canada for the U.S. Army War College and promotion to Colonel,
Russell retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in 2006. He returned to Oklahoma with his wife and five children.
Russell began an active veterans advocacy career upon retirement and worked closely with other veterans to bolster the soldiers
voice in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He formed Vets for Victory with several decorated warriors holding rallies in several
states to embolden the public to support the troops. Russell also toured the country with many distinguished and highly
decorated veterans such as David Bellavia, author of House to House; Marcus Luttrell, author of Lone Survivor; Jeremiah Workman,
author of Shadow of the Sword; and Sean Parnell, author of Outlaw Platoon.
As a motivational speaker, Russell embarked on a successful speaking career in hundreds of cities since 2007. He has
been featured as a keynote speaker at such notable events as the Ring Banquet at the U.S. Air Force Academy and was honored
as the Paul R. Smith Award recipient for his distinguished service in Iraq at the American Veterans Center 15th Annual Awards Gala
in 2012. He is managed by Premiere Speakers Bureau of Franklin, TN.
Russell has also been a successful writer and author. His opinion pieces have appeared in many major publications,
and he is the author of We Got Him! A Memoir of the Hunt and Capture of Saddam Hussein, published by Simon and Schuster
in December 2011. An earlier version of the work was published by Deeds Publishing that year. The book has received critical
acclaim for its vivid portrayal of combat and the events surrounding the hunt for the Iraqi dictator and his capture.
It received numerous endorsements to include General Tommy Franks and the forward was written by General Ray Odierno.
Russell also has appeared on many national television and radio shows as a military and foreign affairs commentator. In addition,
he has made appearances on Spike TV's Deadliest Warrior and four episodes of Outdoor Channel's Gun Stories.
Russell is also the owner and founder of Two Rivers Arms, a small rifle manufacturing business that makes copies
of the Iraqi Tabuk AK-47.
Russell began his service to the public in 2008 when he defeated four opponents in one of the most contested races
in the Oklahoma State Senate that year. Russell won the initial Republican primary with 42% of the vote, leading by 15 points.
He won the Republican run off with 67% of the vote.
As a State Senator Russell authored the Soldiers Relief Act that made Oklahomas serving military tax exempt, affecting
over 50,000 soldiers and their families. He fought for the rights of the unborn, against human trafficking, and authored
landmark adoption reform (three of Russell's five children are adopted). He also authored the Soldiers Credentialing Act,
the law that allows credit for soldiers skills through direct certification rather than lengthy schooling allowing them to quickly
enter the work force. He was also the lawmaker most known for the defense of the 2nd Amendment, restoring lost firearms
freedoms and as a staunch defender of the Bill of Rights. Shortly after the publication of his book, Russell announced
he would not seek reelection and he decided to focus on his business, public speaking and veterans advocacy.
In January 2014, Russell announced he would seek the seat of the United States House of Representatives in Oklahoma's
5th congressional district, which is being vacated by James Lankford. On June 24, 2014, Russell led the field in the
Republican Primary. On Tuesday, August 26th, 2014, Russell won a major victory despite being heavily outspent
to win the Republican nomination. He now faces the general election against Democratic State Senator Al McCaffrey
on November 4th, 2014.
Russell has been married 28 years to the former Cindy Myers of Columbus, Arkansas. He has five grown children,
three of which are adopted from Hungary. He is a fifth generation Oklahoman.
Russell is a graduate of Del City High, Class of 1981. He was inducted into the Del City Hall of Fame in its very first class
along with professional football player Bob Kalsu who was killed in Vietnam and two-time Olympic Gold Medalist John Smith.
Russell graduated from Ouachita Baptist University with a BA in Public Speaking. He was the president and pledge master
of his fraternity and cadet corps commander of the ROTC Cadets.
Russell also earned a MMAS in History from the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas in 1998.
His other military education includes the Infantry Officers Basic Course, the Armored Officers Career Course, the Combined
Arms Staff School and the Battalion Commanders Course.
Russell's military skills schools include, Airborne School, Ranger School, Northern Warfare Summer and Winter Phase,
Mortar School, and the Bradley Gunners and Commanders Courses.
United States Army
Years of service
From the Wikipedia website
A major new book about the
hunt for and capture of
Written by LTC Steve Russell,
who was Commander of 1-22 Infantry
For ordering details click on the following link:
Oklahoma State Senator Steve Russell
Steve Russell served 21 years in the United States Army as an infantry officer, deploying operationally to Kosovo, Kuwait,
Afghanistan, and Iraq. During his command of the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, he was
widely covered during the first year of the Iraq war by TIME, CNN, Fox News, ABC, CBS, NBC, AP and Reuters.
He and his unit were featured in
BBC Panorama's Saddam on the Run documentary as well as
Discovery's Ace in the Hole.
He has also been the subject of numerous books and publications. Russell retired from the Army in 2006 to return to his native state
of Oklahoma, where he has advocated nationally for veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Russell is the author of We Got Him! A Memoir of the Hunt and Capture of Saddam Hussein.
The late Robin Moore, author of The Green Berets and The French Connection praised Russell's book as "an extraordinary
personal glimpse of the war. A monumental credit to himself, his troops, and the United States of America,"
General Tommy Franks calls it "a moving, gripping account of one of the most remarkable achievements of soldiering in a generation."
Russell is a featured speaker with Premiere Speaker's Bureau and speaks at events across the United States, in Canada, and in Europe.
In 2008 he was elected to Senate District 45 and has been a staunch advocate for veterans, 2nd Amendment rights, adoption reform,
and reducing the tax burden on working Oklahomans. He lives in Oklahoma City with his wife and five children.
"Steve" D. Russell (Ret)
Retired Lieutenant Colonel Steve Russell may be best known for leading the battalion that was a central player in the hunt
and capture of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, but he has a much broader, more illustrious record of service.
Before retiring in the fall of 2006, He served 21 years in the U.S. Army's Airborne, Light and Mechanized units, crossing the globe
on assignments from the Arctic, to the Pacific, to Europe, to the Middle East and back.
His seven years overseas operationally in Kosovo, Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq, earned him numerous awards and decorations
including the Legion of Merit; Bronze Star Medal with Valor Device and Oak Leaf Cluster; the Combat Infantryman's Badge; and the
US Army Airborne and Ranger qualifications. His unit was awarded the Valorous Unit Award for its role in the hunt and capture of Saddam.
Born in Del City, OK, 44-year-old Russell earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in public speaking from Ouachita Baptist University
in Arkadelphia, AR, in 1985. That same year he received his commission as an Infantry Lieutenant. Russell served in the following
years as an airborne rifle and mortar platoon leader, a Bradley Company Commander, and a tactics instructor at the US Army Infantry School.
In 1998, he graduated from the Command and Staff College at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, where he also earned a masters degree in history.
He was with the first forces deployed to Kosovo in June 1999 with the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry as the operations officer, responsible
for all combat operations and planning which are critical to the success of any mission. Upon return from Kosovo, Russell served as the
battalion's executive officer. In February 2001, Russell was hand-picked to become aide-de-camp to the general in command of all
ground forces in the United States, the Forces Command commander.
Later that year, Russell was deployed to Kuwait and became responsible for operational combat planning in the Afghan area of operations.
He continued to work in the Afghan arena, moving to Kabul and was the lead planner responsible for the United States plan to raise
and train the Afghan National Army. During this time he was also a delegate representing the United States at a United Nations
Afghan Security Conference in Geneva, Switzerland. Russell returned from Operation Enduring Freedom in August, 2002.
In May 2003, during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Russell deployed to Iraq to assume command of the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry "Regulars"
and was at the heart of the battle in Tikrit, Iraq, until the spring of 2004. His battalion received regular coverage by the media, and after
Hussein's capture was profiled in two documentaries "Ace in the Hole" (Discovery Channel) and "Saddam on the Run" (BBC Panorama.)
Russell returned to the states still in command the 1st Battalion 22nd Infantry until June, 2005, preparing them for their second deployment
that fall. He was then selected to become the US Army Infantry School's Chief of Tactics at Ft. Benning, Georgia. He turned down promotion to
full colonel and a Queens University War College Fellowship in Kingston, Canada to retire in September 2006 and be with his wife and 5 children.
He has since founded Vets for Victory, an organization that educates the public about the war on terror, and travels across the country putting a
soldier's voice to the national debate on the war. He is a sought-after speaker, writer and media analyst, and been a major voice in combating
defeatist rhetoric at home.
Steve Russell is the founder of
Two Rivers Arms Company, makers of
the Iraqi Tabuk ™ Rifles. To go to the Two Rivers Arms Company website
click on the following logo:
Steve Russell at the workbench at Two Rivers Arms Company
On November 4, 2014 Steve
Russell was elected to the United States Congress
as Representative from Oklahoma's 5th Congressional District.
Republican Steve Russell elected
to represent Oklahoma City in Congress
The U.S. Army veteran and author will replace Rep. James Lankford in the district that includes most of Oklahoma County;
Cole, Lucas and Mullin win new terms in the U.S. House.
WASHINGTON Republican Steve Russell, a U.S. Army veteran and author, captured the congressional seat Tuesday
that includes most of Oklahoma County, Russell, 51, defeated state Sen. Al McAffrey, an Oklahoma City Democrat,
and three Independents and will replace U.S. Rep. James Lankford in the U.S. House. Lankford, R-Oklahoma City,
ran for the U.S. Senate and won the seat being vacated by Sen. Tom Coburn.
Russell will be the third different congressman since 2007 in the district that includes most of Oklahoma County
and Pottawatomie and Seminole Counties.
Hes the first, at least in recent history, that didnt actually live in the district when he was elected. Russell lives in south
Oklahoma City, just outside the boundary of the district he was elected to represent. The U.S. Constitution only requires
that members of the House live in the state that they represent. Russells home has been on the market for several months.
Russell, of Oklahoma City, got percent of the vote in defeating Democratic state Rep. Al McAffrey and three Independents
Russells unit in Iraq played a role in capturing that countrys former president, Saddam Hussein. He wrote a book about it called,
We Got Him! A Memoir of the Hunt and Capture of Saddam Hussein. He served one term in the state Senate and has a small
company that manufactures rifles.
Steve Russell speaks to
a crowd Tuesday after winning the Republican primary runoff
for Oklahoma's 5th Congressional District in Oklahoma City. November 4, 2014
Photo by Bryan Terry, The Oklahoman
Steve Russell speaks at the Republican watch party in Oklahoma City, Tuesday, Nov. 4, 2014.
Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
Steve Russell, United States Congressman from Oklahoma
Photo from NewsOK
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