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Posts made in: 'Training' (25) Currently Viewing: 1 - 10 of 25

August 6, 2013 at 11:36am

“Starting Strong”: Episode 10 - Vehicle Mechanic

"Starting Strong" Episode 10 host Staff Sgt. Kristen King. Photo courtesy of goarmy.com

AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE U.S. ARMY'S "ONE MOS AT A TIME" REALITY SHOW >>>

Episode 10 concludes the 10 part Army reality show "Starting Strong" - which allows civilians to have a one-week tryout in a specific Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) before deciding whether or not to enlist. Joshua Johnson has a strong passion for becoming a mechanic but will a try out week in the U.S. Army on Fort Carson be enough for Joshua to overcome the distance away from home and join the U.S. Army?

This week, Starting Strong takes a look at U.S. Army Vehicle Mechanics. Joshua, a potential recruit from Campbell, MN was sent to Fort Carson, CO to see if he has what it takes to be an U.S. Army Vehicle Mechanic or "Light Wheel Mechanic". After one week of training will he become U.S. Army Strong?

"It only requires that you're mechanically curious and not afraid to get your hands a little dirty," show's host SSG Kristen King introduces the audience to this week's episode. "An army may move on its stomach, but its mission success depends on its equipment, and we've got the coolest toys in the world."

Joshua, an 18-year-old high school student from Campbell, Minnesota, had to grow up fast.

That's because he has seven brothers and sisters that were all raised by his grandmother due to his mother's alcoholism.

Joshua has always had an affinity for the mechanic profession but fears the Army because he doesn't want to move away from his family.

"I got into cars at a really young age helping my uncle with his race car, "Joshua tells the camera.  "I started working on my first car when I was 13."

Joshua's Army training experience takes place under the mentorship of Sergeant First Class Andrew Puls. Sergeant First Class Puls has 19 years of service.

His first challenge starts with a physical and mental test; climbing a massive training rock wall.

He very easily conquers his first test.

Next up, Joshua visits Fort Carson's Closed Combat Tactical Training Facility, which looks like a virtual reality playground.

"This is the world's greatest arcade with the biggest and baddest video games you'll ever see," says show's host SSG King.

Joshua trains atop a simulated tank as the gunner with literally video screens surrounding him on all sides.

"This is the best video game I've ever played," Joshua says. "Nothing compares to that."

After his virtual reality simulation, Joshua heads to the motor pool where military vehicle repairs take place.

Army Vehicle Mechanics can rebuild a geared hub and replace a half shaft in just 30 minutes.

Joshua quickly catches on and appears to seamlessly blend in with the rest of his battle buddies.

The next mission for Joshua is attempting to retrieve a damaged vehicle from a possible hot zone in a simulated Afghan village.

His mentor, SFC Puls stresses the importance of there being nothing in a vehicle worth a loss of life.

His last stop takes him to the NHRA Top Fuel Nationals at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway to meet a former National Guardsmen and Army 63B, Shane Boyington.

Shane works for the FRAM Air Filter Top Fuel Dragster team.

"It has been my childhood dreams to work on this stuff and I wouldn't be doing it today if it wasn't for the army.

Joshua gets hands on experience taking apart and putting together the engine block of an 8,000 horsepower dragster that actually reaches 306 mph in just 3.98 seconds.

After his full hands on experience and a brief message of support from his grandma, who raised him, it becomes the time for the decision of Starting Strong's last military-reality show participant.

Joshua does decide to join the U.S. Army and is even sworn in to service in front of thousands of fans at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

What a memorable way to end one show's tenure and to start the tenure of Joshua's military career.

FOLLOW UP: Spc Joshua Johnson is currently a 91B Wheeled Vehicle Mechanic currently serving with the 3rd Infantry Division at Ft. Stewart, GA.

BONUS: Warrior Forge ROTC 2013 at JBLM coverage

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 1

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 2

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 3

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 4

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 5

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 6

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 7

LINK: Review of Starting Strong, Episode 8

Filed under: Army News, Training, Video,

July 30, 2013 at 9:58am

Bird watching - OSC training at JBLM

Three Blackhawk helicopters approach a pick-up zone, or PZ, as National Guard Officer Candidate School selectees from 27 states wait to be airlifted to another training venue. Photo by J.M. Simpson

I like Blackhawks.

They produce a turbo-charged, earthshaking amount of lift when they take off.

While Warrior Forge draws to a close, 234 National Guard Officer School Candidates (OCS) selectees engage in an intensive 16-day training period before receiving their commissions as second lieutenants.

The 234 candidates came from 27 states west of the Mississippi River to complete the training they had begun at their home bases.

The 66th Theater Aviation Command of the Washington Army National Guard provided the airlift.

"The training has been great," Candidate Ryan Cash, a former sailor, said on Saturday afternoon as he prepared to board one of three Blackhawk helicopters for a 10-minute ride to the next training venue.

"Jumping on and flying in a Blackhawk is really great, and a nice touch for our training."

Moments later, Cash and ten other candidates moved toward a waiting Blackhawk.  They quickly boarded and strapped in.

The Blackhawk's power came up and grass, dust and noise followed the craft as it climbed into the blue sky.  

I like a bird like that.

>>> In the dust and heat of a makeshift pick-up zone at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, National Guard Officer Candidate School selectees load onto three Blackhawks during a training exercise. Photo by J.M. Simpson

>>> Two Blackhawk helicopters carrying National Guard Officer Candidate School selectees lift off in a whirlwind of dust, grass and noise. Photo by J.M. Simpson

July 23, 2013 at 10:17am

“Starting Strong”: Episode 8 - Civil Affairs Specialist

"Starting Strong" Episode 8 host Staff Sgt. Kristen King. Photo courtesy of goarmy.com

AN INSIDE LOOK AT THE U.S. ARMY'S "ONE MOS AT A TIME" REALITY SHOW >>>

Episode 8 of the Army reality show "Starting Strong" - which allows civilians to have a one-week tryout in a specific Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) before deciding whether or not to enlist - examines what it takes to make it as a Civil Affairs Specialist. Alana Mingay has strong ties to disaster relief with the Peace Corps, but will that and a tryout week in the U.S. Army on Fort Bragg be enough for her to decide to join the U.S. Army?

This week, Starting Strong takes a look at U.S. Army Civil Affairs Specialists. Mingay, a potential recruit from Marquette, Mich., is sent to Fort Bragg, N.C. to see if she has what it takes to be a U.S. Army Civil Affairs Specialist, or "Warrior Diplomat."

After one week of training, will she become U.S. Army Strong?

"Around the world, these highly trained soldiers are the link between the Army and local civilians," said the show's host, Staff Sgt. Kristen King, when introducing the audience to this week's episode. "They assess political conditions, coordinate aid and win hearts and minds for the Army mission."

Mingay, a 33-year-old grad student who has worked with the Peace Corps and the Crisis Corps, has a passion for disaster relief but worries about the combat aspect of the military.

Read more...

Filed under: Army News, Training, Video,

July 15, 2013 at 3:58pm

7th ID conducts Ranger School assessment at JBLM

U.S. Army soldiers hurdle over an obstacle during the 7th ID’s Ranger School Assessment on JBLM July 9. Photo credit: Sgt. Zachary Gardner

It only takes a set of orders and a completed packing list to attend Army Ranger School, but it takes mental strength, physical endurance and leadership excellence to pass it.

To help prepare soldiers for the demands of Ranger School, the 7th Infantry Division hosted a Ranger School assessment July 8-10. Only the most promising candidates from this selection will move on to the school.

The point of this assessment is to give Soldiers an idea of what to expect at Ranger School, explained Sgt. 1st Class Kristopher Barnette, a Blacksburg S.C. native, and Ranger-qualified Soldier who helped evaluate the candidates.

>>> Staff Sgt. Trevor Oliveira, a reconnaissance scout platoon sergeant with 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, does sit-ups during the confidence course portion of the 7th Infantry Division's Ranger School assessment on Joint Base Lewis-McChord July 9, 2013. Photo credit: Sgt. Zachary Gardner

Read more...

July 12, 2013 at 1:37pm

Tomahawks produced plumes of black smoke in classroom

U.S. Soldiers with C Co., 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 4-2 SBCT, participate in call-for-fire familiarization training using a call for fire trainer at JBLM July 10. Photo credit: Spc. Reese Von Rogatsz

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - Soldiers from 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment "Tomahawks", 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, took part in call-for-fire familiarization training enhanced by the use of a high-tech simulator, July 10.

The Call for Fire Trainer provides realistic observed fire training in support of all indirect fire and close air support mission tasks across simulated battlefield environments. Its capabilities are used to instruct all levels of personnel in tasks, procedures and mission planning.

"This is as effective as you can get in a classroom setting," said 1st Lt. Scott Hasenpflug, fire support officer with Company C, 2nd Bn., 23rd Inf. Regt.

Read more...

July 6, 2013 at 9:48am

Warrior Forge 2013: Week Two recap

Retired four-star general J.H. Binford Peay III, the superintendent at the Virginia Military Institute, Lexington, Va., toured several training sites during the 2013 Leader Development and Assessment Course June 24 at JBLM. Photo courtesy of LDAC PAO

ROTC cadets from universities across the country are spending the summer at Joint Base Lewis-McChord as part of the U.S. Army Cadet Command Leader Development and Assessment Course, also known as Operation Warrior Forge. The leadership-based course is the Army's largest annual intra-continental training exercise with over 6,000 Cadets in attendance each year and serves as a rite of passage for ROTC Cadets prior to becoming commissioned officers in the Army.

This year's operation is broken down into 13 regiments with 29 days of training for each regiment. During each cycle cadets will undergo four different evaluations that are used for eventual placement on the national order of merit list.

Below are snippets from Warrior Forge week two action as seen through the eyes of the LDAC Public Affairs officers. Enjoy.

Cadets Colangelo and Edminston take top APFT honors

ROTC cadets Zachary Colangelo, Bucknell University, Lewisburg, Pa., a Pleasantville, NY resident, and Margaret Edminston, University of Wyoming, Laramie, Wyo., a Valencia, Calif. took first place for the male and female categories respectively during the 5th Regiment Army physical fitness test, June 24 at JBLM. Competing against 457 of their peers, Colangelo grabbed the top spot with a score of 354, while Edminston achieved the highest women's score with a 359.

The APFT is broken down into three parts including the two-mile run, two-minute push-up and two-minute sit-up. Each Cadet completes all three and then receives a score based on the Army's APFT score chart. Cadets must pass the APFT based on Army standards for age and gender in order to qualify for the Army. To pass the APFT, Cadets must receive at least 60 points in each event.

Retired four-star general J.H. Binford Peay III in the house

Retired four-star general J.H. Binford Peay III, the superintendent at the Virginia Military Institute, Lexington, Va., toured several training sites during the 2013 Leader Development and Assessment Course June 24 at JBLM. During his visit, Peay met with senior leaders to discuss this year's training regimen and traveled to several training sites to observe Reserve Officers' Training Corps Cadets completing the training.

Read more...

July 5, 2013 at 3:18pm

Warrior Forge 2013: ROTC and Aristotle

5th Regiment ROTC Cadets shoot at targets ranging from 50 to 300 meters away. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

Aristotle and Maj. Gen. Jeff Smith agree on the basic principles of learning.

"Using the language of knowledge is no proof that they possess it," Aristotle wrote. 

In other words, theory is not understood until a person has the ability to apply it.

Smith, commanding general, US Army Cadet Command, agrees. 

He has made it clear to everyone up and down the teaching line that cadets will learn by doing.

Cadets in 5th Regiment certainly had an opportunity to learn by doing during cultural awareness training.

>>> Loading Up: ROTC Cadets of 5th Regiment prepare to move to a weapons and firing training scenario. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

Read more...

July 3, 2013 at 4:38pm

Warrior Forge 2013: Week One recap

Maj. Gen. Jeff Smith, commanding general, U.S. Army Cadet Command, stopped by the 2013 Leader Development Assessment Course at JBLM June 19-20. Photo courtesy of LDAC PAO

ROTC cadets from universities across the country are spending the summer at Joint Base Lewis-McChord as part of the U.S. Army Cadet Command Leader Development and Assessment Course, also known as Operation Warrior Forge. The leadership-based course is the Army's largest annual intra-continental training exercise with over 6,000 Cadets in attendance each year and serves as a rite of passage for ROTC Cadets prior to becoming commissioned officers in the Army.

This year's operation is broken down into 13 regiments with 29 days of training for each regiment. During each cycle cadets will undergo four different evaluations that are used for eventual placement on the national order of merit list.

Below are snippets from Warrior Forge week one action as seen through the eyes of the LDAC Public Affairs officers. Enjoy.

Cadet Connor Maher

As a hot crowded military bus rumbled southward down Interstate 5 June 13 from the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., each of the Reserve Officer Training Corps Cadets sat jammed into the torn pleather seats, rife with looks of concern. One of the passengers, Cadet Connor Maher, a political science student from Boston University, recounted the flurry of emotions engulfing his thought process leading up to the uncomfortable bus ride down I-5 on the way to the 2013 Leader Development and Assessment Course.

Read more...

June 27, 2013 at 9:43am

Warrior Forge: ROTC triplets share the bond of duty at JBLM

Triplets Randy and Allen and Matthew Jozwiak are the only set of triplets attending the Leader Development and Assessment Course at JBLM. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

The number three is significant.

In literature there are the well-known three wishes, the three little pigs, the three bears and the three billy goats gruff.

As to the religious aspect, the ancient Babylonians had three primary gods representing heaven, earth and the abyss. Moreover, there were three aspects to the Egyptian sun god - rising, midday and setting.

When it comes to the Leader Development and Assessment Course, or LDAC, where ROTC cadets from around the country converge at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, there are Randy Jozwiak, Matthew Jozwiak and Allen Jozwiak.

The three brothers are triplets, and they share more than just the bond of brotherhood.

They share the bond of duty to country.

Read more...

June 18, 2013 at 11:02am

Best gunner team battles on JBLM to end June 21

What company will take home the Sentinel Cup Friday? Photo courtesy of Facebook

The Sentinels of the 502nd Intelligence Battalion, 201st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, 7th Infantry Division are competing against one another for the title of "best gunner team" at a MK19 range on Joint Base Lewis McChord. The coveted Sentinel Cup will be award to the winning company Friday, June 21. Enjoy sound bites from Sgt. 1st Class Fletcher Mansfield, Spc. Kevin Moody and Spc. Alexander Conrad in the video below.

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