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NCNG supports new KFOR rotation

Commanding Unit


North Carolina National Guard
Raleigh, NC, US

NCNG suppors new KFOR rotation


Story by Capt. Matthew Boyle

NCNG supports new KFOR rotation HOHENFELS, Germany – Members from across the North Carolina National Guard were hand picked to participate at the Joint Multi-national Readiness Center (JMRC) here, to support the 30th Armored Brigade Combat Team (ABCT) pre-deployment training in June 2015.

The NCNG composite staff of approximately 30 Soldiers assumed the role of the Kosovo Force (KFOR) headquarters, providing planning, coordination and command of the 30th ABCT while they trained and prepared for a deployment to Kosovo later in the summer. JMRC is a combat training center that provides dynamic and adaptive training to Brigade Combat Teams, ensuring that deploying units are ready to operate as NATO members with multi-national partners.

Col. Manley James, the 139th Regional Training Institute commander, lead the exercise as the KFOR commander.

“We have members from every major subordinate command, who volunteered to provide the best possible support for the 30th ABCT’s training, we quickly formed as a team, performing as a division level staff, to me it shows that our soldiers are always ready for any mission,” said James.

The JMRC operations group controlled the events that occurred in the field to include protests and roadblocks. As these scenarios unfolded the 30th would send reports back to the NCNG staff and request guidance. The command and control at JMRC simulates what the brigade will encounter when it deploys to Kosovo as the Multinational Battle Group-East reporting to KFOR.

The NCNG staff also included members who will be deploying to Kosovo as well. Lt. Col. Stephen Jones is a logistics officer and will be deploying to Kosovo to serve as the Military Assistant to the Commander of Kosovo Force. While at JMRC he was able to train in that role providing the staff with guidance on logistics, feasibility studies and general counsel based on his 31 years of experience.

“JMRC and this exercise has certainly been a great value as I prepare to deploy to Kosovo, the subject matter experts and institutional knowledge here are impressive,” said Jones.

Sgt. 1st Class David Abernathy is an intelligence specialist and the noncommissioned officer in charge of the intelligence section at the Joint Force Headquarter in Raleigh, North Carolina. During the exercise he served in the same role as a staff intelligence specialist. Abernathy built information products for the staff and provided intelligence analysis of unclassified real world updates on Kosovo.

“Kosovo is a complex environment from the drug trade, organized crime and human trafficking, the 30th’s intelligence section has done a great job at learning this unique landscape and I know they are fully capable of providing intelligence support during this deployment,” said Abernathy.

The training has prepared the 30th ABCT to act as the Multi-national Battle Group-East while deployed to Kosovo with the assistance of guardsman from North Carolina.

“I am very pleased with this staff, they came here to train and learned how to operate at a new level. They will bring this experience back to their home units and the organization as a whole will benefit from the skills gained and insights earned,” said James.

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