By 1st Lt. Mikel WeichMay 14, 2014
FORT STEWART, Ga. - Sgt. David Fleming, a scout platoon team leader with 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, continued to push forward looking for his fifth and final point during the land navigation portion of a pre-ranger selection course on Fort Stewart, April 29.
It had been a long morning moving methodically through the swamps, but that didn't bother Fleming. "Being from Colorado I've spent my entire life in the outdoors," he said.
After trudging through the swamp for 15 minutes looking for his point he finally saw reflective tape hanging from a tree. Fleming ran towards it and confirmed it was his fifth point.
With the completion of the land navigation course, Fleming was only one event away from completing the new 3-15 Inf. pre-ranger selection course.
From April 28 to May 2, 15 "Can Do" soldiers completed numerous tests during the course to create a battalion order of merit to determine who from the Can Do Battalion would earn the opportunity to attend the U.S. Army Ranger School at Fort Benning, Georgia. The tasks included the Ranger Physical Fitness Test, Combat Water Survival Test, a land navigation course, operations planning, and a 12-mile foot march.
First Lt. John Servidio, of Port Richey, Florida, was chosen to be the lead instructor of the course along with 1st Lt. Nathan Recoulle, a Boston native, both with 3-15 Inf.
"Having a ranger tab is one of the best things you can have as an infantryman," said Servidio. "I'm glad I can use my experience at ranger school to help prepare these soldiers for the challenge ahead."
The 3-15 Inf., pre-ranger selection course is designed to mirror the U.S. Army Ranger School's weeklong Ranger Assessment Phase, which is where most of the school's attrition occurs. Soldiers must pass each event in the selection course at Fort Stewart before they can go on to Fort Benning. When candidates arrive at Fort Benning they will have to complete the National Guard's pre-ranger course before moving on to ranger school.
The course also includes classes on both warning and operation orders that help soldiers better prepare for the patrolling portion of ranger school.
"First Lt. Recoulle and 1st. Lt. Servidio ran an excellent course," said 1st Lt. William Clapp, a native of Gainesville, Florida. "They definitely gave us the tools we need to go forward and earn our tabs."