By Sgt. Jeffrey Moore, 10th Press Camp HeadquartersApril 25, 2013
FORT BRAGG, N.C. -- Logistic Support Teams from Forts Bragg, Campbell, Stewart, Drum and the U.S. Army Special Operations Command competed in the 406th Army Field Support Brigade, Brigade Logistics Support Team Olympics here April 9-10.
First place went to the Fort Drum, N.Y. team of Maj. Danny Frieden and Ed Gargas;
second place to the USASOC team of Chief Warrant Officer 4 David Primasing and Mario Chavez; and third place went to the Fort Campbell, Ky., team of Maj. Centrell Jones and Mike Ritchart.
"Whether a unit is training, equipping or deploying, the brigade logistics team is there to help that unit thrive," said Col. David Wilson, commander, 406th Army Field Support Brigade.
The BLST units are an important part of every Brigade Combat Team because they provide support and guidance on all aspects of unit movement and training.
"If a maneuver brigade is getting ready to deploy, and has to draw pre-deployment training equipment, the BLST team is who the brigade goes to, in order to get that equipment," said Wilson. "Whether they are going to [Joint Readiness Training Center], [National Training Center] or conducting at home training," he explained.
"The BLST solves the problems that the brigades can't solve on their own," said Frieden, Brigade Logistics Support Team chief, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division.
Each BLST consists of one Soldier and one civilian.
"Because we deploy our civilians and Soldiers with brigade combat units, all of our personnel need to be able to do the same tasks like combat life saver," said Wilson.
Wilson continued to explain that each team trained for months to prepare for the competition.
"Each battalion had a battalion-level competition, so each of these teams is the very best," said Command Sgt. Maj. Vance Snider, 406th Army Field Support Brigade.
The battalion-level training consists of a variety of different events including first responder training and basic weapons familiarization.
"Fort Drum put together a competition for us before we came here, so I would say we are pretty prepared," said Frieden.
The BLST Olympics is a three-event. The first day consisted of first responder lanes where teams had to not only treat a variety of battlefield injuries, they also had to react to pneumatic weapons fire, and return fire on targets. The second day included High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle rollover drills, the Engagement Skills Trainer and weapons disassembly and assembly. Day three was worth the most points. The teams were given a situation and had limited time to give a detailed briefing on the situation.
"Training is the corner stone of readiness and at the end it's a team building competition," said Snider.
The BLST Olympics also served another purpose.
"With the BLST teams from all of the different units here, we have an ability to determine what transmission control protocol's work best, and the units here can take that knowledge back to their respective installations and ensure that all of the units are on the same page," said Wilson. "This is not only to train, but it's to assess where we are as a unit. These Olympics are to rate our strengths and weaknesses."
The BLST Olympics also served as a good assessment of the 406th Army Field Support Brigade.
"If maneuver is the fist that is doing the striking, then logistics is the muscle that enables the fist to strike," said Wilson.