FORT RILEY, Kan. -- Soldiers from Company C, 2nd Combined Arms Battalion, 137th Infantry Regiment, Kansas National Guard, worked to complete qualification training from March 8 to March 16 at Fort Riley.
The training prepared the Soldiers for a rotation to the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California, Co. C executive officer Lt. Matt Deloux said.
"This is part of new equipment fielding … and our acquisition of new M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles," Deloux said.
Soldiers from the unit will begin training at NTC around the same time that 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, is there, but will be assigned to support the 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team out of Tupelo, Mississippi.
Soldiers from 2nd CAB, 137th Inf. Regt., will join with the 155th ABCT at Fort Hood, Texas, following their NTC rotation, Deloux said. The 155th ABCT, with the 2nd CAB, 137th Inf. Regt., will then prepare for future deployments, Deloux said.
According to the Mississippi National Guard website, the 155th ABCT is the largest unit in the Mississippi National Guard with approximately 3,500 Soldiers.
Soldiers of the 2nd CAB, 137th Inf. Regt., are familiar with the Bradley Fighting Vehicles, said Master Sgt. Steven Trowbridge, battalion Master Gunner-Bradley 2nd CAB, 137th Inf. Regt.
"The main difference between the earlier version (of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle) and this one (the M2A3) is the vehicle commander's independent viewer," Trowbridge said. He also said these features help the crew find and acquire additional targets while otherwise engaged.
"We've spent time in the classroom at Camp Funston, then moved out here to practice what we've learned," Trowbridge said. "And with this (the independent viewer) it brings more of a hunter killer aspect to our operations."
The Army Acquisition Support Center website says the M2A3 Infantry Fighting Vehicle features upgrades across much of the on-board systems that "provide 'hunter-killer target handoff' capability."
The M2A3 IFVs and their crews are also the "Eyes of the Artillery," the ASC website said. The on-board technology the 2-137th will be using "can acquire, identify, track and designate targets while mounted and under armor, enhancing crew survivability."
Soldiers of the 2nd CAB, 137th Inf. Regt., benefited from being at Fort Riley, both in Camp Funston classrooms and on the post's training ranges.
"We've always received great support here," Trowbridge said. "And that's important because, as National Guard Citizen-Soldiers, while we have to train to the standards of all active-duty Soldiers, we have less time to do that."