By Sgt. Brandon BanzhafNovember 24, 2015
FORT HOOD, Texas - Following multiple training exercises, the moment of truth finally arrived for Company C "Comanche," 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.
The company sized cavalry unit deployed to the Joint Readiness Training Center in Louisiana with the 1st Brigade Combat Team "Devil Brigade," 82nd Airborne Division to help strengthen the operational relationship between the two units.
Upon completion of the month-long training exercise, 2-7 Cav was validated and fully trained to be a part of the Global Response Force, a unit that can deploy anywhere at a moment's notice.
"Being validated means the Army has seen that we can fight while integrated into an airborne brigade," said Capt. Rob Greene, Comanche commander. "It also means that both Team Comanche and the Devil Brigade are capable of working together and keeping our equipment operational."
Working with six M1A2 Abrams tanks, eight M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles, three rifle squads and other support elements the unit brought to the training area, Company C wasted no time getting down to business.
Supplying the heavy firepower for the Devil Brigade, Greene said his company was up for the challenge.
"We provided armored vehicles and the capability to maneuver faster and with more lethality than any other unit in the GRF [Global Response Force]," said Greene, an Orlando, Florida, native. "If the GRF needs any enemy defeated, anywhere, Team Comanche can provide the mobile, protected firepower to conduct the operation."
Because Team Comanche isn't an organic unit to the 82nd, syncing their communications and coordinating for supplies presented additional challenges they quickly had to fix.
"Our biggest challenge was communications," said Cpl. Nicholas McElroy, the company's communications noncommissioned officer. "But we worked with the 82nd to solve any problems and developed a good working relationship."
The 1st ABCT did its best to fully support the mechanized unit and worked out minor kinks.
"The Devil Brigade was extremely accommodating to the unique needs of a mechanized package," said Greene. "They had struggled with our logistics needs initially, but went the extra mile to ensure we had the classes of supply we needed."
After many engagements with the opposing forces and completing missions, the rotation was over and the units redeployed.
"My Soldiers performed amazingly," said Greene. "They literally won every battle and kept our equipment running. Team Comanche won JRTC."
With the training rotation behind them, Company C must now maintain their readiness in case the nation calls for them to deploy with their airborne brethren.
"Next, we increase our readiness to coincide with the 18th Airborne Corps recall requirements and continue to train," said Greene. "We will continue to conduct sustainment gunneries to keep our crew skills high, and we will conduct maneuver training in the next few months to ensure our platoons stay competent at closing in and destroying the enemy."