Currahees conduct two-gun raid
June 22, 2012
FORT CAMPBELL, Ky-Soldiers from 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment. 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division, participate in a two-gun air assault raid training exercise June 12th and 19th at Fort Campbell, Ky.
"We are conducting a two-gun air assault raid culminating with live fire once they arrive at the landing zone," said Lt. Col. John K. Bowman, the commander of the 4th Bn., 320th FA Regt., 4th Bde., 101st Abn. Div.
During the two-gun air assault raid, Soldiers would hook up a M119A2 Howitzer to the helicopter via slingload, transfer to alternate location and then fire six 105mm high-explosive rounds with point detonation fuses.
"We were hooking up the gun to a Blackhawk using sling cables, then move and drop it and set it up again," said Pvt. 1st Class Stephen Mink, from Btry. A, 4th Bn., 320th FA Regt., and native of San Diego.
With a unit that redeployed from Paktika Province, Afghanistan nearly a year ago, this is the first time the battalion has had the opportunity certified its M119A2 Howitzers in an air assault raid training exercise.
"Nearly 40 percent of the battery is new and this is their first time conducting a two-gun raid," said Command Sgt. Maj. Robert Johnson, the command sergeant major of 4th Bn., 320th FA Regt., and native of Cleveland.
This type of training doesn't happen often due to competing resource requirements, said Johnson.
Though many of the Soldiers participating were previously unfamiliar with this type of exercise, they understood the importance of this training and rose to the occasion to ensure mission completion.
"This will definitely help me in combat," said Mink. "This type of training will make me more fluent in what I need to do."
"The battery has been hurting on personnel levels but these Soldiers stood up to the challenge," said Staff Sgt. Travis Rice, a gunnery sergeant from Btry. A, 4th Bn., 320th FA Regt. "I was very impressed."
This training exercise was a portion of a larger field training exercise that included a fully operational tactical operation center and situational training exercise lanes, said Bowman.
Both Battery A and Battery B were completing a portion of Eagle Flight II training. This particular training exercise was to certify the batteries in many of their perspective of platoon level tasks.