News: 2-227th Lobos depart for JRTC
Story by Sgt. Christopher Calvert
FORT HOOD, Texas – When soldiers deploy they must be fully equipped and prepared to execute full spectrum operations while in theater. For troops with the 2-227th “Lobos,” their skills are being validated to ensure they’re ready to get the job done while overseas.
More than 170 soldiers with the 2nd Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, departed March 13 to the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, La., to test these skills.
During the rotation at JRTC, soldiers’ proficiency will be tested during highly realistic, stressful, joint and combined arms training across the full spectrum of conflict, said Lt. Col. Jason Blevins, commander for 2-227th and Victoria, Texas, native.
“During this rotation, we will be enabling the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division in their Security Force Assistant Teams mission,” Blevins said. “We will accomplish this through medevac air movement and offensive aviation operations.”
Not only are soldiers going to learn new tactics, techniques and procedures, but they are also going to improve their existing skills and capabilities, Blevins said.
“We are preparing ourselves to more properly shake out our mission command systems,” Blevins explained. “We want to refine and continue to develop our sustained systems and capabilities such as Fat Cow, Jump Forward Arming and Refueling Point, and Downed Aircraft Recovery Team operations, as well as personnel rescue and all soldier services.”
With emphasis on realism, JRTC provides rotational units with the opportunity to conduct joint operations which emphasize contingency force missions.
Training scenarios are based on each participating organization’s Mission Essential Tasks-List, and many exercises are mission rehearsals for actual operations the organization is scheduled to conduct, said Command Sgt. Maj. Anthony Smoots, command sergeant major for the “Lobos” and native of Oklahoma City.
“Our goal during the next few weeks at JRTC is to prepare for upcoming deployments,” Smoots noted. “We have a new team that we’ve got together since our last deployment, so we want to hone our skills, systems and team members.”
No matter what the mission ahead throws at the unit, JRTC will ensure soldiers are ready to perform without delay, Smoots said.
We are looking forward to executing theater closing operations during JRTC; we will continue to train up aviators and aviation crews during our support of 4-10th Mountain, Smoots said. “No matter what we encounter in the future, we will be prepared to execute any and all missions.”