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    Patriot Battery defends AUAB from airborne threats

    Patriot Battery defends AUAB from airborne threats

    Photo By Tech. Sgt. James Hodgman | A Patriot PAC-2 missile battery prepares to move into the firing position during an...... read more read more

    AL UDEID AIR BASE, QATAR

    03.04.2016

    Story by Tech. Sgt. James Hodgman 

    379th Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

    AL UDEID AIR BASE, Qatar - The U.S. Army’s Delta Battery, 1st Battalion, 62nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, provides security for nearly 10,000 people and billions of dollars in resources.

    The Patriot is a long-range, high altitude, all-weather system designed to counter a variety of airborne threats from tactical ballistic missiles, drones and aircraft.

    1-62 ADA maintains the base’s Patriot missile defense systems at multiple locations and conducts training drills daily to ensure Soldiers are ready at a moment’s notice to defend against airborne threats.

    “Being ready for that moment is a no-fail mission,” said Capt. Moses Marmolejo, Delta Battery commander, from San Marcos, Texas.

    “We owe it to the service members who live and work here to ensure our Soldiers are ready at any given time,” Marmolejo said. “That’s why we train so hard and stress the importance of maintaining proficiency. At any moment, our Soldiers could be called upon to save lives.”

    To maintain high proficiency levels, Delta Battery Soldiers train on a daily basis. The unit conducts tactical exercises every day testing a variety of combat capabilities, including the loading and reloading of Patriot missile launchers.

    The unit conducted an operational readiness exercise on March 4. During the exercise, teams of Soldiers prepared nearly 10 missile launchers to take out mock inbound targets.

    “The goal with the exercise was to have every launcher ready to fire as quickly as possible,” said Army Sgt. Luis Fernando Vea, Delta Battery, 1-62 ADA Patriot station launcher operator and maintainer from Phoenix, Arizona.

    Delta Battery Soldiers must also be knowledgeable about how to maintain missile launchers, as well as equipment needed to support the missile launch mission such as forklifts and guided missile transporters. Many Soldiers also learn one another’s job to ensure someone with the skills needed is always available.

    The unit protects a variety of assets at AUAB including the KC-135 Stratotanker, C-17 Globemaster III and approximately 950 buildings covering a landmass of roughly 12 square miles.

    “Being able to maintain our equipment and remain proficient on the job is vital,” Marmolejo said. “Our mission is to protect our assets and we do that with our missiles.”

    The unit has the capability to neutralize a variety of airborne threats with kinetic and proximity weapons.

    “If something threatens the base, we are here to neutralize it and we can take care of any missile threat coming at this base,” said 2nd Lt. Chris Wallace-Carrete, 1-62 ADA Delta Battery executive officer from Lake Tahoe, Nevada.

    “Our Soldiers are out there every day doing the hard work, training in excessive heat, maintaining their equipment and they never complain, because they understand the importance of their jobs,” Wallace-Carrete said.

    The Patriot missile system is employed in 13 countries, including five NATO nations. In 2015, 1-62 ADA provided security for more than 20,000 sorties in support of Operation Inherent Resolve and Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 03.04.2016
    Date Posted: 03.10.2016 04:26
    Story ID: 191835
    Location: AL UDEID AIR BASE, QA 
    Hometown: PHOENIX, AZ, US
    Hometown: SAN MARCOS, TX, US

    Web Views: 942
    Downloads: 1

    PUBLIC DOMAIN