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    1-82nd Cavalry Squadron completes XCTC, gains valuable skills

    1-82nd Cavalry Squadron participates in XCTC, gains valuable skills

    Photo By Sgt. Jennifer Lena | 1st Lt. Dylan O’Keefe, a cavalry scout platoon leader for Bravo Troop, 1st Squadron,...... read more read more



    Story by Sgt. Jennifer Lena 

    115th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment

    YAKIMA, Wash. – Hundreds of Oregon Army National Guard Soldiers from the 1st Squadron, 82nd Cavalry Regiment (1-82 Cav.) completed their annual training in eastern Washington’s rough terrain and harsh climate, June 14-28. Soldiers were tested and evaluated on their combat readiness, in coordination with First Army, during an eXportable Combat Training Capability (XCTC) rotation at the Yakima Training Center, Washington.
    Cavalry scouts, combat medics and support elements from armories in Albany, Portland, The Dalles, Redmond, Prineville and Bend, Oregon, converged to participate in this large-scale training exercise. XCTC events are designed to simulate a realistic combat environment with the intent to test platoon proficiency in their unique military occupational specialties and Soldier skills.
    “It is important for the 1-82 Cav., and other units, to conduct XCTC rotational training in order to test our ability to fight and communicate at echelon in austere environments,” said Lt. Col. Dominic L. Kotz, commander of the 1-82nd. “Exercises like these enable leaders to plan and execute missions with assets and personnel that they would normally not have an opportunity to work with.”
    This event was the first time the 1-82nd was able to work with the 81st Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT). The job of the cavalry scouts of the 1-82nd is to be the eyes and ears of the 81st SBCT commander and staff, enabling them to make accurate and timely decisions.
    “The infantry is on the front lines of the battlefield, but they need to know what’s ahead of them before they just walk into something,” said Spc. Timothy Parson-Eoyeo, a Stryker Combat Vehicle driver in C Troop, 1-82nd. “That’s where the scouts come in: to observe what’s ahead and report it back so that we don’t have astronomical losses due to something unexpected.”
    The training exercises the scouts performed involved extensive lanes focusing on zone reconnaissance, dismounting a Stryker, handling mass fires on the notional enemy using direct and indirect fire systems, and above all, communication.
    “Another reason these exercises are important is because it stresses the importance of communication, sustainment and maintenance,” Kotz said. “If we cannot communicate in the field, then all I have is 520 cavalrymen camping; if we cannot re-supply ourselves with food, fuel and ammunition, then we will wither; and if we cannot maintain our vehicles and equipment, then the entire formation will come to a grinding halt.”
    Active duty Soldiers from the 189th Combined Arms Training Brigade out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, served as coaches, mentors and operational controllers (OCs) during XCTC. The Brigade provides oversight and valuable perspectives for National Guard units that may not have had the time or resources to complete the training necessary for deployment.
    “In my personal opinion, we have been excelling,” said 1st Lt. John Evans, platoon leader for C Troop, 1-82nd. “Our first mission was really rough, but with the OCs out here from First Army supervising and refining all of our actions, they’ve helped us identify some weak points and strong points and how to merge those to become a more efficient fighting force.”
    “We had one simple objective,” Kotz said. “Train hard, train safely and be better on day 15 than we were on day 1.”



    Date Taken: 07.13.2019
    Date Posted: 07.13.2019 17:48
    Story ID: 331250
    Location: YAKIMA, OR, US

    Web Views: 515
    Downloads: 1