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    NH Guardsmen Strengthen Relationships During Granite Guard II



    Story by Sgt. Charles Johnston 

    114th Public Affairs Detachment

    “If we have a real life incident we’re not shaking hands for the first time,” said Rick Cricenti, Director of New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services. “We’re not meeting people for the first time. We already know all the players we’re dealing with, and we’re able to get to work much quicker without a feeling-out period.”

    Preparations were underway for the exercise on Friday. Organizers with DHHS worked alongside soldiers with 3643rd Brigade Support Battalion and 54th Troop Command, as well as airmen from the 157th Air Refueling Wing, to unload notional medical supplies at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Concord.

    “There were a lot of moving parts. It had the ability to be pretty chaotic,” said Army Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Smith, Assistant Operations NCO, 54th Troop Command. “Everyone embraced the task and purpose and didn’t need to know each moving part. We came together as a team, and we just executed.”

    The simulation continued early Saturday morning when Guardsman joined local, state and federal employees to transport the supplies to select training sites using Black Hawk helicopters with help from the 169th Aviation Company.

    “It’s been a cooperative team effort,” said Department of Homeland Security volunteer, Dr. David Heller, who manned a flight from Concord to Conway, which delivered and administered medicine to the sick. “It’s refreshing to work with different groups.”

    While notional aid was being distributed to the 13 affected regions throughout the state, members from various public safety agencies, to include the NH State Police, worked in unison to provide communications and logistical support from the state Emergency Operations Center in Concord.

    The joint exercise provided significant training value for Lt. Jeffrey Ladieu, a state trooper and former Army Ranger, assigned to the Department of Safety’s communications unit. Ladieu worked in the EOC as a law enforcement liaison.

    “Networking is instrumental within the public safety realm,” said Ladieu. “Distributing, disseminating and relocating resources are much quicker when we practice working together.”

    As the operation concluded Saturday afternoon, event participants reflected on their experience working as a team.

    “We all can work together to solve any problem we’ve got without tremendous difficulty,” said Cricenti. “We just love working with the Guard.”



    Date Taken: 08.07.2016
    Date Posted: 08.07.2016 18:02
    Story ID: 206361
    Location: CONCORD, NH, US 

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