Andrew H. Owen, Virginia National Guard Public Affairs
MCCOY, Wis. — Virginia and Maryland Soldiers and Airmen came to
Fort McCoy to participate in exercise Global Patriot during their
two-week extended combat training in July.
Maryland National Guard Soldiers
from the 1st, 158th Cavalry participate in Special Patrol
Insertion/Extraction training at Fort McCoy. (Photo
by Maj. Rick Breitenfeldt)
National Guard Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 224th Aviation Regiment,
with Soldiers from Virginia and Maryland, and Airmen of the 200th
Weather Flight, assigned to the historic 29th Infantry Division, began
arriving in Wisconsin as early as July 9 to begin preparation for the
are here to support an exercise called Global Patriot," said
Capt. David Aaron Loy, assistant operations officer for the battalion.
"This is a joint, international exercise. It is a very large
exercise that encompasses Fort McCoy, Volk Airfield and also some
components down in Louisiana."
said the exercise is an Air Force-generated mission focusing a lot of
attention on homeland defense training. While the battalion is at Fort
McCoy, it also will focus its attention toward wartime mission-based
training with the 29th Combat Aviation Brigade.
brigade is our higher headquarters," said Loy. "Within the
brigade, they have two Apache units, us as the Blackhawks, they’ve
got a MEDEVAC unit, they’ve got some Chinooks, they’ve got an
infantry component and a brigade support battalion, so it’s a very
large body with a lot of moving parts."
explained how important the exercise is to the relationship between
the battalion and the brigade by saying, "The reason we are
training here with them is because they are who we are scheduled to go
with on our next deployment."
Soldiers from the 2nd, 224th
Aviation Regiment of Virginia assist Maryland National Guard
Soldiers from C Troop, 1st, 158th Cavalry with special patrol
insertion/extraction training. (Photo
by Sgt. Andrew H. Owen)
is the first time we have really worked in detail with them,"
said Loy. "This is their first time working with us and our first
time working with them."
addition to the units within the brigade and the 200th Weather Flight,
the Soldiers of the battalion will be working with components of the
active-duty Army, Air Force, the Netherlands, Great Britain, and
Canada, according to Loy.
is a huge exercise with a lot of moving pieces and parts. It’s a
major exercise," Loy said.
the exercise, the Soldiers and Airmen will be focusing on their
individual tasks, honing, and building on their specialized skills to
complete the mission successfully.
we’re focusing on during our time here is individual MOSQ (military
occupational specialty qualification) training. We’re conducting
individual weapons qualification and crew-served qualification,"
said Loy. "We’re doing aviation training, door gunnery, flight
training, driver training and Humvee roll-over training."
got a lot packed into our week and a half here on the ground," he
said. "This is a great opportunity for us to begin working with
them again," said Lt. Col Jim Ring, battalion commander, during a
welcome briefing to the Soldiers. "The things we’re doing this
(exercise) are very similar to what you’re going to do on your next
2009, Patriot again went the extra mile to maximize training for all
participants, incorporating combat ops and homeland defense scenarios.
begin Patriot, two Chemical, Biological, Radioloioligical and Nuclear
Emergency Response Forces conducted a Homeland Defense scenario
involving a radiological event within the U.S.
first week of the exercise focused on unit and individual training
events. The second week included a multi-day combat scenario exercise
with medical evaluations, combat convoy training, close air support,
and time-sensitive targeting.
scenario also helped the units work on tactical airlift/airdrops,
joint combat search-and-rescue missions, helicopter air assaults,
dissimilar air combat, airborne surveillance, and tactical