210th BSB Soldiers conduct cargo air drop training
April 5, 2012
FORT POLK, La. -- Soldiers from Distribution Platoon, F Company, 210th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team retrieved several pallets of cargo that were air dropped March 24 onto Geronimo Airfield at the Joint Readiness Training Center here.
Soldiers of F Company will have many roles while deployed. One of them is to coordinate an aerial drop of supplies to those in need. Once they get notice that a remote unit is out of a necessity or humanitarian aid is needed in a faraway village, they will make ar- rangements to get those supplies there by air.
"Our job is to coordinate to get the supplies needed," said Capt. David Ferstl, F Company commander. "We draw them and then get them to the Air Force hangar where they package the bundles and place them on the plane."
During a deployment, F Company facilitates ground forces resupply by air several times during their rotation. Being able to go through the whole process at JRTC was a great learning experience for the whole company.
"As a company, this is the first time we are doing cargo delivery system air drop training," Ferstl said. "JRTC brought about an opportunity for all the elements to train together successfully.
"I am really happy we could do this training," he added. "It is difficult to do this at Fort Drum because (of) conflicting schedules with other elements of the mission, such as air support."
The purpose of the training was to go through all of the appropriate steps for an air delivery.
After arranging for the supplies to be delivered, a drop zone is located and prepared, communication with the DZ is established and the cargo is recovered.
"I think the training went pretty well," said 1st Lt. Peter Murphy, distribution platoon leader for F Company. "This is our first time retrieving the dropped cargo; it was a learning experience for everyone."
The recovery of the supply bundles was a great experience for all of the Soldiers involved.
"It was awesome," said Pfc. Shane Blanchard, a vehicle driver in the Distribution Platoon who operated the crane and guided pallets onto the back of the medium tactical vehicle.
"This was my first time participating in a mission like this," he added. "It was pretty cool watching the pallets fall to the ground from the plane."