FORT CARSON, Colo.- Spc. Cody Grant, gunner, Company B, 4th Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, fired the first round ever from a Mobile Gun System (MGS) Stryker at Fort Carson March 6.Grant was also first to fire a 105mm round at Fort Carson since the M60 series tank was retired in May 1997 during the brigade's three-week MGS gunnery qualification.A gunnery qualification requires the three-Soldier crews to demonstrate their mastery of several training drills, including calibrating the weapon systems, engaging various types of hostile targets during day and night, operating successfully with degraded functionality and responding to a chemical attack by an enemy.Grant, who has four years of experience with the M1A2 Abrams tank, said that getting used to the MGS Stryker was rough at first."You really have to take the time to put that mindset aside and to learn a new weapon system," said Grant, a native of Hermiston, Oregon. "It makes you more successful as long as you take the initiative to want to learn everything."Spc. Kerry Huckabee, driver, Company B, 4th Bn., 9th Inf. Reg., 1st SBCT, 4th Inf. Div., also has experience with the M1A2 Abrams tank and said that he's impressed with the MGS Stryker after seeing it in action."I think we're a lot more confident with the vehicle now," said Huckabee, a native of West Palm Beach, Florida.The three-man MGS crews qualified with the 105mm rifled cannon, .50-caliber machine gun and M240 machine gun weapon systems over the duration of the gunnery.Grant not only fired the first MGS round ever at Fort Carson, but also worked tirelessly with his crew to earn the honored title of "top gun" out of the 11 crews that qualified.Second Lt. Andrew Willias, MGS platoon leader, Company B, 4th Bn., 9th Inf. Reg., 1st SBCT, 4th Inf. Div., said his crew earned the title by spending countless hours maintaining their Stryker, consulting with experts on the weapon systems, practicing MGS drills and studying the training engagements."They spent hours on this vehicle making sure that it would be accurate," said Willias, who served as the Stryker commander on the crew.
"We were just trying to do our best," said Huckabee, the driver on the crew.