WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii - Soldiers from 209th Aviation Support Battalion, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, conducted a training rotation at Pohakuloa Training Area on the Island of Hawaii during September.
The rotation focused on honing the soldiers’ basic tasks and proficiencies while providing support to the CAB’s air gunnery mission and increasing the battalion’s readiness for the Contingency Response Force Task Force.
In addition, the 209th ASB conducted a convoy live-fire exercise where they quickly recovered a vehicle, reacted to an improvised explosive device and direct fire.
“My first rotation at PTA provided me the opportunity to get hands-on live-fire training with some of the various weapons that most soldiers don't get the opportunity to train with,” said Sgt. Austin Wiley, intelligence analyst, Headquarters Support Company, 209th ASB, 25th CAB.
The soldiers qualified on the M4 Carbine, M16 rifle, M249 light machine gun and M240B machine gun. They also had the opportunity to fire the M320 and M203 Grenade Launchers.
“Bringing the soldiers to PTA provides a great opportunity for some excellent training with minimal distractions,” said Capt. Scott Julich, Company C commander, 209th ASB, 25th CAB, 25th ID. “My soldiers completed their job efficiently and effectively cross-trained with each other during this rotation. As an added bonus, being away from home provided the soldiers with an opportunity to really bond and get to know each other.”
The soldiers also conducted downed aircraft recovery team training and forward aircraft refueling point operations.
The 209th ASB trained approximately 250 soldiers during the rotation.
“The training was a great learning experience,” said Pfc. Brandon Osif, aircraft structural repairer, Company B, 209th ASB, 25th CAB, 25th ID. “I look forward for another chance to get back out there.”