By Staff Sgt. Charles ButlerJune 24, 2013
CAMP GUERNSEY, Wyo. - The 109th Regional Support Group (RSG), South Dakota Army National Guard, of Rapid City conducted command and control operations at Camp Guernsey, Wyo., as part of the 29th annual Golden Coyote training exercise.
The 109th served as the mayor cell for the Camp Guernsey training site and coordinated operations with the exercise headquarters back at Camp Rapid in Rapid City. The 109th conducted daily, personnel-status reports, tracked troop movements and ensured the coordination of logistical support for units within their area of operation.
"This training is good for us to see how our staff operates," said Col. Bill Freidel, 109th RSG commander. "We have a young staff, so this has been a great opportunity for us to get out and train in a tactical environment that teaches our new Soldiers how to do this the right way."
In a deployment situation, the 109th could be tasked to command a forward operating base (FOB), where they would potentially be responsible for up to 6,000 service members. Being the FOB mayor cell would require the 109th to ensure all the units in their area of responsibility are accounted for, supplied and informed of mission critical details.
A major part of the 109th's mission here was to ensure the accountability of troops under their command. This is a task that is good for the personnel section to get to practice at the training exercise, said Maj. Steve Volk, of Harriet, S.D., and 109th RSG personnel officer.
"This kind of exercise is good for us to be able to test our systems out in the field," said Volk.
Soldiers of the 109th have also been conducting warrior training tasks while at Camp Guernsey. Several soldiers went through the gas chamber, where they tested the effectiveness of their personal protective gear. Soldiers also participated in force protection measures with different scenarios, where Soldiers had to react to casualties, improvised explosive devices and other threats.
"We need to stay vigilant," said Spc. Edward Hruska,a paralegal for the unit. "It's easy during training to say this isn't the real thing but easily could be in a short time, and I believe we are preparing for a real-world mission."