By Spc. Jordyn WorshekAugust 22, 2019
B Company of 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, will travel to Fort Polk and the Joint Readiness Training Center in October, providing mechanized support to a light infantry unit from the 10th Mountain Division. Bandit Co. is slated to control the high ground and key terrain while providing heavy fire support. The company's recent training efforts in preparation for the joint training included dismount infantry tactics and a Bradley Fighting Vehicle crew gunnery, August 14-15, at Fort Stewart, Ga.
"Gunnery qualifies crews. You can't do anything else as a mechanized infantry unit without said crews being qualified beforehand," said 1st Sgt. Kyle McKelvey, the senior enlisted advisor of B Co. 3-15. "This qualifies us to work with 10th Mountain as their support."
The ability to feature a qualified mechanized company is essential to supporting light infantry units in the event of a near peer threat.
"Other light infantry units will ask for support from mechanized units, so they can better prepare for a near-peer threat. All of our near-peer adversaries have an armored element to them just like we do," continued McKelvey. "You send a light brigade to a fight, which have armored elements, but not nearly what mechanized units have."
Harnessing the power of Bandit Company's focused fire support should allow their 10th Mountain counterparts to control more battlespace during the joint training event this Fall.
"We provide support by fires," said Staff Sgt. Cody Yates, a 3-15 infantryman. "We'll be attached to a heavy weapon platoon and we'll provide support when they assault their objective. We have more firepower than a light infantry unit would have, and that will help the assaulting unit take over their objective."
Accomplishing the mission hinges on fielding qualified Bradley crews prior to leaving for JRTC. Bandit crews meet that challenge by engaging and destroying targets over multiple day and night iterations, hitting a minimum seven out of ten moving targets with their weapon systems.
"The targets range from 300 to 1900 meters," said Staff Sgt. Jeramy Milbaugh, an infantryman assigned to 3-15. "The point of having those different targets is for the crews to practice scanning techniques so they can hit near and far away targets."
The gunnery certified Bandit Company crews to provide supporting fire during upcoming training events and future forward deployments.