MCALESTER ARMY AMMUNITION PLANT, Okla. (Aug. 14, 2009) - Soldiers participating in Golden Cargo here further enhanced their combat preparedness by taking the Combat life Saver Course conducted by the MCAAP fire department.A,A The course teaches Soldiers advanced life saving techniques to include airway management, bleeding control, chest decompression, splinting broken bones and inserting IV's into wounded Soldiers for certification- the "wounded Soldier" is your battle buddy.

Organized on tables in neat rows are all the necessary items to complete the task: from needles and bags of saline solution to plenty of gauze and tape for all the failed attempts. A,A At each table there are trained medical personnel ready to step in and assist as needed.

"Today we are training on IV's... sticking your partner.A,A I'm sticking my battle buddy for the fourth time," said Pfc. Candice Hankwitz, 395th Ordnance Company, an Army Reserve unit out of Appleton, Wis., with a sheepish grin.

A,A As painful as it may be, the training provides a valuable skill that may be required to save somebody's life.

Assistant instructor Capt. Alex Monje, 5501st US Army Hospital, San Antonio, Texas, said, "The Soldiers can use this on the road, in the field or on civilians."

Along with gaining life-saving techniques, Soldiers who complete the class for the first time have their time accredited to the Army Institute for Professional Development and earn promotion points, which aids in the promotion process.

A,A This year, more than 60 Soldiers are expected to earn or renew their certification in Combat Life Saving. In order to stay current, the Combat Lifesavers must renew their certification annually.

Chris Morris, MCAAP paramedic who conducting the 40-hour course said, "I really enjoyed working with the troops. It's our chance to help out."

He added, "If only one Soldier benefits from the training- It's been worth it."