News Icon

News: Helocasting, change of command ceremony complete Army Reserve training

Story by Spc. Bryan RandolphSmall RSS IconSubscriptions Icon

Unique Army Reserve unit welcomes new commander Spc. Bryan Randolph

Capt. Raymond E. Childress, a Houston native and the outgoing commander of the 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne), which is headquartered in East Point, Ga., takes the guidon from 1st Sgt. Thomas R. Boadway, company first sergeant, as a part of the change of command ceremony held at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., during the unit's July training. The ceremony was held on the beach immediately after helocast training, where the soldiers of the 982nd jumped out of UH-60 Black Hawks into Tampa Bay. (Photo by U.S Army Spc. Bryan A. Randolph, 300th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.)

MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Jumping out of a helicopter and into water is not a typical training event for most Army Reservists, but for soldiers of the 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne), it was just one more training task to complete.

The unique unit, which is headquartered in East Point, Ga., is one of only two combat camera units in the entire Army. So, by default, their training tends to be a bit more out of the box, said Capt. Raymond Childress, outgoing commander, 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne).

“We do this training because we are combat camera, and we’re supposed to be able to provide full support for the Army’s unified land operations … that includes forced entry and waterborne insertion as well,” Childress said.

The five-day battle training assembly included a variety of events ranging from physical training to documentation techniques to a change of command.

However, the most exciting task on the schedule was the helocasting, said Maj. William Wood, incoming commander, 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne).

“It was our apex training event for this weekend,” Wood said.

Helocasting consists of groups of soldiers jumping into water out of helicopters that are between 5- to 10-feet above the surface and moving around 5 to 10 knots.

Though the water the combat camera soldiers landed in was the beautiful shoreline of Tampa Bay, it was still not a lazy day at the beach, said Staff Sgt. Brendan Stephens, an NCO with more than 22 years of combat camera experience.

“Once we get up over the ocean and see all those boats, it starts getting really exciting,” Stephens said.

After all of the soldiers jump into the water, the helicopter flies away. Then the soldiers swim toward nearby boats where fellow soldiers help them out of the water.

Once the soldiers finished their helocast training, they moved directly into the change of command ceremony on the MacDill Air Force Base beach.

With dripping-wet uniforms and blood pumping, the combat camera soldiers welcomed a new commander.

“We’re not doing the training to make a spectacle for the change of command. It’s just easier for us to finish that, do our change of command, I take off and the incoming commander replaces me. We’re just here and it worked out that way,” said Childress, a Houston native.

Wood, a Radcliff, Ky., native, expressed excitement at how the training events all came together and said he was looking forward to the opportunity to lead the unique Army unit.

“It’s exactly the speed I was looking for,” said Wood.

The new commander said the training at MacDill Air Force Base also allowed his soldiers the opportunity to work and coordinate with airmen, which is invaluable training since joint service environments are common for combat camera soldiers.

Wood doesn’t want to stop the unique training there though. He is also looking for new training opportunities.

“In Atlanta, there’s a huge opportunity to bring in civilians, masters of their trade, to bring their skill sets into help training our [soldiers] in documenting fast-moving, fast-paced missions,” Wood said.

Childress is heading to Fort Benning, Ga., where he will serve as an operations and planning officer for 1st Brigade, 98th Training Division.


Connected Media
ImagesArmy Reservists...
U.S. Soldiers with the 982nd Combat Camera Company,...
ImagesSoldiers complete...
U.S. Soldiers assigned to the 982nd Combat Camera...
ImagesUnique Army Reserve...
U.S. Soldiers with the 982nd Combat Camera Company,...
ImagesCombat camera...
A U.S. Soldier with the 982nd Combat Camera Company...
ImagesUnique Army Reserve...
Capt. Raymond E. Childress, a Houston native and the...


Web Views
201
Downloads
0

Podcast Hits
0



Public Domain Mark
This work, Helocasting, change of command ceremony complete Army Reserve training, by SPC Bryan Randolph, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.

Date Taken:07.27.2013

Date Posted:07.31.2013 14:59

Location:MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, FL, USGlobe

Hometown:EAST POINT, GA, US

Hometown:HOUSTON, TX, US

Hometown:RADCLIFF, KY, US

Hometown:WILSON, NC, US

More Like This

  • As the 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne) prepares for a deployment to Afghanistan, Staff Sgt. Rachel Copeland, brings experience from two prior deployments as the noncommissioned officer-in-charge.
  • Troops with the 982nd Combat Camera Company (Airborne) gathered at Fort Jackson, S.C., for several days in November to practice multiple military skills, including dismounted urban assault techniques and land navigation.
  • Paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division assert their Army Combatives and Advanced Tactics program is essential in building a more complete, well rounded, and resilient soldier.
  • Army Reservists assigned to the 359th Theater Tactical Signal Brigade participated in a three-day Combat Lifesaver Course November 19 - 21 at the Regional Training Site-Medical on Fort Gordon. Soldiers from Ohio, North Carolina and Maryland joined local troops in learning how to treat and evacuate casualties effectively on the battlefield.

Options

  • Army
  • Marines
  • Navy
  • Air Force
  • Coast Guard
  • National Guard

HOLIDAY GREETINGS

SELECT A HOLIDAY:

VIDEO ON DEMAND

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Youtube
  • Flickr