‘Vanguard’ soldiers enhance aerial delivery capabilities

4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division Public Affairs
Story by Sgt. Bob Yarbrough

Date: 05.02.2015
Posted: 05.06.2015 09:45
News ID: 162404
‘Vanguard’ soldiers enhance aerial delivery capabilities

FORT STEWART, Ga. – “Vanguard” soldiers of 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, teamed up with the Air Force to conduct a joint airborne and air transportability training, or JAATT, at Fort Stewart, Georgia’s Remagen drop zone, May 2, 2015.

The JAATT is designed to help units become familiar with setting up and marking drop zones and airfields, and assists with proper communication with aircraft to support resupply missions. In this case, the aircraft was a C-130 Hercules from the 165th Airlift Wing of the Georgia Air National Guard.

“With 4th Brigade being light [infantry], they really want to be highly mobile,” said Air Force Capt. Luke Berreckman, an air mobility liaison officer assigned to the 621st Contingency Operations Support Group, McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey, and attached to 3rd Infantry Division. “So to be able to resupply themselves on the move with small air drops is really important.”

Berreckman led the joint training for two soldiers with 1st Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 4th IBCT, who had to be, either, jumpmaster or pathfinder qualified to ensure their familiarization with aerial operations.

The Vanguard Brigade’s aviation element coordinated the training where the two soldiers of 1-30 Infantry were trained in drop zone support team leader operations, and they successfully coordinated aircraft landings and a training bundle airdrop.

During the landing portion, soldiers with 703rd Brigade Support Battalion, 4th IBCT, unloaded a Humvee from the aircraft, demonstrating the ability to bring mobility assets to a battlefield.

It was nothing new for Army Sgt. Tyler Negri, an infantryman with 1-30th Infantry, who is also pathfinder qualified.

“We are pretty much the link between the ground troop and all aircraft,” said Negri. He added his responsibilities were to let the aircraft know of the safe wind speeds to drop the cargo, confirm landing and drop zones and ensure the area was clear of any personnel.

As the Vanguard Brigade prepares for Marne Focus, a division training event, and a rotation at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, Louisiana, later this year, they are ensuring they’re ready to conduct aerial resupply operations for any mission.