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    Deployment Exercise, Deployment Ready

    Deployment Exercise, Deployment Ready

    Photo By Sgt. Audrianna Arellano | Sgt Jacob Lines, a squad leader assigned to 1st Platoon, Charlie Company, 2nd...... read more read more



    Story by Pfc. Audrianna Arellano 

    82nd Airborne Division Sustainment Brigade

    Tucked away in a company operations facility, a locker room style building, Paratroopers packed and rigged up their rucksacks to various musical playlists. Multiple conversations sift through the air as those who are done packing anxiously wait for further instruction.
    Paratroopers assigned to 1st Platoon, Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, received a Deployment Readiness Exercise alert Feb. 5.
    "We got the order this morning," said 2nd Lt. Corey Masarcchia, an infantry officer assigned to 1st Plt., C Co., 2-325 Abn. Inf. Regt., 2nd BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. "We've gone and done squad size live fire, platoon live fire, and now we're conducting a brigade mission."
    The Paratroopers of the White Falcon company promptly loaded their equipment into a designated shipping container. Sgt. Jacob Lines, an infantry squad leader assigned to1st Plt., C Co., 2-325 Abn. Inf. Regt., 2nd BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. conducted final checks on his Paratrooper's equipment. Once complete, all they could do was play the waiting game.
    Deployment Readiness Exercises test a Paratrooper's ability to be ready within 96 hours after the alert. While the Paratroopers of White Falcon were waiting anxiously, they successfully completed their first task.
    "Waiting is what gets to our [paratroopers,]" said Lines. "We double and triple checked their packed equipment, so it gives you time to be nervous and anxious, especially for the new guys.
    “We have a brand new private that came over the weekend, and we were like surprise,” said Lines.
    Lines says he helped lay out the new Paratrooper’s equipment for inspection.
    “For them it may be as overwhelming as drinking from a fire hose, but you get used to it,” explained Lines. “After doing this more than once, it becomes a regular thing, like learning how to drive.”
    Consistent field training and DREs ensures Paratroopers are always deployment ready.
    Lines, a maneuver squad leader, said his squad is trained in breaching techniques.
    "We find a place that's hard to get through and we make an opening," said Lines.
    Lines says he thinks knowing everyone's personal jobs are what makes DREs run smoothly and at a platoon level, they know they can be flexible, said Lines.
    “I run an assault squad,” said Sgt. Nicholas Schneider, an Infantry squad leader assigned to1st Plt., C Co., 2-325 Abn. Inf. Regt., 2nd BCT, 82nd Abn. Div. “Land navigation and terrain familiarization, as far as our operation orders go, are a big part for me.”
    Schneider has been in the unit for over a year.
    “I think I’ve partaken in three exercise at this level,” said Schneider. “When it comes to planning logistics, DREs are a very good way to prepare for real deployments.”
    Lines says DREs are meant to be realistic.
    “For a prior deployment, I was at Seaworld with my friends when I got the notification,” explained Schneider. “It was a weird time to get it because I wasn’t even thinking about work. Constantly training keeps us, especially younger paratroopers who haven’t deployed, in that readiness mindset.”
    Lines says he’s prepared to be notified whenever, wherever.
    “Participating in DREs always reminds me that at any given point in time, whether you’re at home with your family or still at work, you can get the call,” said Lines.
    “It was a regular evening with my wife when I got my notification,” said Lines. “Now I’m thinking about what I have to do. I have to tell all my guys to grab their stuff that’s been packed just sitting in their closet to report to the company.”
    After the first day of notification, the second day consists of briefs and mission walkthroughs.
    “We found out we are doing a combat night jump, so we are doing inspections head to toe,” explained Lines.
    During the combat jump, paratroopers will be jumping with a weapon, ammo, and a rucksack.
    All the paratroopers lined up and waited for squad and team leaders to inspect their Advanced Combat Helmets, their magazines, and their kits. This process is called the Initial Manifest Call, or IMC.
    “Everyone takes IMC seriously,” said Schneider. “It’s important to constantly refresh your brain.”
    IMC is completed the day before a jump, while Final Manifest Call is completed the day of.
    “There’s always that ‘what if’ in the back of your mind,” expresses Schneider. “I like heights, but I still get nervous. That’s why IMC and FMC are so important.”
    Lines says he thinks the odds of anything serious happening during a jump are very slim. He recalls a jump that almost didn’t go to well.
    “The timing was off when we jumped,” explained Lines. “Another paratrooper stole my air, and my foot was caught in his corner vent hole. I couldn’t pull my reserve because it would have wrapped around me, so I free fell for about 500 feet.”
    Within 200 feet, his parachute caught air again and he landed safely.
    “There’s inherent dangers in jumping, but compared to how often we jump and the amount of paratroopers that jump, there’s little to no chance of getting seriously injured,” said Lines.
    Once the Paratroopers of White Falcon took off, after their combat night jump, the DRE is over, and their Field Training Exercise begins. Once their FTX is complete, White Falcons will head to a Joint Readiness Training Center in Fort Polk, Louisiana.
    “All of this training is just certifying us to deploy,” said Lines. “After this, we head to JRTC, which is our ultimate test.”
    All units maintain deployment readiness status, should the call come.
    “Excessive training may seem tedious, but I love my job,” said Lines. “I wouldn’t have it any other way.”



    Date Taken: 02.05.2018
    Date Posted: 02.23.2018 15:51
    Story ID: 267035
    Location: FORT BRAGG, NC, US
    Hometown: CINCINNATI, OH, US
    Hometown: QUANTICO, VA, US

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