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August 26, 2011

Training

MP unit returns to regular training routine at McCoy after recent deployments

Members of a Wisconsin Army National Guard military police unit returning from recent deployments focused on their regular routine during training at Fort McCoy.
PHOTO: Military Police personnel with the 32nd Military Police Company of the Wisconsin Army National Guard fire and qualify with MK19 grenade launchers. Photo by Rob Schuette
Military Police personnel with the 32nd Military Police Company of the Wisconsin Army National Guard fire and qualify with MK19 grenade launchers. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

The 32nd Military Police Company conducted training in basic military law-enforcement skills, said Master Sgt. Kenneth Smith, the 32nd noncommissioned officer (NCO) in charge for operations.

That included training on the unit’s crew-served weapons, such as the M2, .50-caliber machine gun, the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon, the M203 grenade launcher and the MK19 grenade launcher.

“We, traditionally, have fired the crew-served weapons at Fort McCoy,” Smith said. “We normally can’t fire them except for the extended-training time we have at Fort McCoy.”

The two-week training session also was important for the new Soldiers, Smith said. It allowed them to come together with the other unit Soldiers to function as a team.

Capt. Mindy Sage, the company commander, said the training also was a good opportunity for the younger Soldiers to fill positions that require leadership.

PHOTO: Soldiers from the 32nd Military Police Company undergo grenade training at a Fort McCoy range. Photo by Rob Schuette
Soldiers from the 32nd Military Police Company undergo grenade training at a Fort McCoy range. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

“A lot of our senior NCOs (sergeants, staff sergeants and sergeants first class) are attending Noncommissioned Officer Education System training and couldn’t attend this training,” Sage said.

Sgt. Ahmad Brown, a team leader for the unit, said the training at Fort McCoy was a transition for many unit members from being deployed to going back to their normal National Guard training schedule.

Unit training has transitioned from a combat-controlled to an environment-based atmosphere, Brown said.

“It gives us hands-on training with the troops,” he said. “We can work with them and teach them instead of having them learn things on the fly.”

The training included land-navigation skills. Brown said the basics of using maps and plotting points were taught, because Global Position System technology may not always be available.

Unit members also participated in hand-grenade training to refresh those skills.

“We learned again to work as a team, rather than as individuals,” he said. “It allowed our lower-ranking Soldiers to take leadership roles.”

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