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    Kings of battle keep the fire: 1-9th FA fires its last rounds

    Kings of battle keep the fire; 1-9 FA fires its last rounds

    Photo By Staff Sgt. Richard Wrigley | M109A6 Paladins from Battery B, 1st Battalion, 9th Field Artillery Regiment...... read more read more

    FORT STEWART, Ga. - “First let me start by saying, Soldiers don’t want to reorganize. Nobody ever raised their hand and said, ‘I want to join the Army to turn stuff in, to put things into mothballs, to get rid of equipment and to close down facilities,’ they want to blow stuff up,” said Lt. Col. Jay Morrison, commander, 1st Battalion, 9th Field Artillery Regiment “Battlekings.”

    Despite this fact, the Soldiers of Battery B, 1-9th FA, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, have found a way to do both; a fact that does not surprise the Battlekings’ commander.

    “[These Soldiers] are professionals, they understand the mission at hand, and they have always done, and continue to do, whatever is asked of them,” Morrison said.

    In fact, the crews of B Battery have just achieved their M109A6 Paladin Gunnery Table VI qualifications after completing GT V and GT VI here, Sept. 11.

    They accomplished this all while preparing to transition to a different battalion in a different brigade in the next few weeks.

    While GT VI is a bi annual requirement for a FA battery, and therefore relatively common, this one was unique in that the Battlekings are in a period of transition, which some may describe as controlled turmoil due to their imminent deactivation.

    Each element within the BN has a separate mission; the only thing that holds true for all is that the task to reorganize is the very first priority.

    While some elements within the Battalion are simply going away, others are changing their mission-capabilities in terms of different equipment and personnel, in order to be of use elsewhere. One thing is certain, the 1-9th FA as it is known now, is scheduled to deactivate in only a few more week's time.

    For Bravo Battery, this means a move to the 1st Battalion, 41st Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, while simultaneously losing two Paladins and their crews, greatly changing their war-fighting capabilities and strategies.

    “The focus of the [2nd ABCT], and this battalion has been reorganization; to shape personnel, equipment and facilities to meet the Army’s requirements,” said Morrison. “Nevertheless, we have an ancillary mission to ensure that the formations that [leave this battalion for other units] are as fully trained as they can be.”

    Due to the desire to give 1st ABCT a battery as fully trained as possible, given time and resource constraints, both the 1-9th FA and B Battery command teams saw an opportunity to fit in one last gunnery into their training calendars, explained Morrison.

    The opportunity proved to be a good one, as despite the looming reorganization, B Battery met with success at GT VI.

    “With everything going on, it’s hectic - the distraction is there, but just like we’ve always done, we put it aside, figured out what we needed to focus on and made it happen,” said Sgt. 1st Class Hector Ramos, a platoon sergeant within the B Battery.

    The gunnery turned out to be a great opportunity for the Soldiers, as they had not been able to perform their military occupational tasks in quite some time due to the upcoming reorganization, and the Soldiers were hungry for the opportunity to “get after it,” Ramos explained.

    “It is always a huge morale boost when Soldiers get to go out and shoot,” Morrison said. “It doesn’t matter what they are shooting, Soldiers just want to do their military job.”

    That seems to be just what happened, according to Ramos.

    “Bottom line, our job is to send rounds down range, shoot, move and communicate, and that is just what we did.”

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 09.11.2014
    Date Posted: 12.10.2014 14:51
    Story ID: 149980
    Location: FORT STEWART, GA, US 

    Web Views: 97
    Downloads: 0

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