2nd ID platoon practices combat zone mission
RODRIGUEZ RANGE, South Korea — A newly formed 2nd Infantry Division platoon, designed to quickly move soldiers and supplies to outposts in combat zones, tested itself under live-fire conditions here this week.
Transport Platoon soldiers, part of Company A, 602nd Aviation Support Battalion, Combat Aviation Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, were in Warrior Valley this week for live-fire training.
Lt. Col. Gregory A. Fawcett, 602nd Aviation Support Battalion commander, said the 30-member platoon was one of eight units practicing this week.
Platoon commander 2nd Lt. John Abella, 23, of Yorba Linda, Calif., said the unit was formed as part of the Combat Aviation Brigade, which combined 8th Army and 2nd ID units into a single aviation brigade earlier this year.
“Soldiers have slowly trickled in and in the past month and a half we have been working up to this (live-fire convoy training). We are a supply and transport platoon. This is our mission,” he said.
On Monday the platoon completed a “dry-run” on the range. The unit, equipped with laser training gear, convoyed across the range in Light Medium Tactical Vehicles and Humvees.
The training scenario included small-arms attacks on the convoy from both sides, a “main supply route” blocked by an unexploded improvised explosive device — IED — and climaxed with an IED hit on a Humvee.
When the device “exploded,” Pvt. Dawn Adams, 21, of Muncie, Ind., lept off of the vehicle she was in and took cover on the ground, providing security with other soldiers.
Adams said she was ready to do the same thing for real if ever deployed to a war zone.
“Everything just seemed real” during the training, she said. “That is what I liked about it. Everyone worked together.”
While Adams provided security, combat lifesaver Spc. Chris Degarmo, 25, of Chambersburg, Pa., ran to the stricken vehicle.
“Once they told us there was a man down, my job was to go in and assess the casualty. They had one dead person and a gunshot leg wound. While I applied a tourniquet, I said it was urgent and they called in a medevac,” he explained.
Meanwhile other soldiers hitched the damaged Humvee to another vehicle and the convoy moved away from the danger zone to a rally point where the injured soldier could be loaded onto a medevac helicopter.
Fawcett said 602nd soldiers do live-fire convoy training three times a year and last did it in July.