RAPID CITY, S.D. - National Guard leadership and field commanders from 12 states and 40 units came together here at Camp Rapid for the 2010 Golden Coyote training exercise in-brief today.

Leaders from various key sections for the exercise discussed how operations will be conducted over the next two weeks.

Units participating in the exercise come from multiple branches of military service - Army, Navy, Air Force and members from three foreign countries to include: Germany, the United Kingdom and observers from Suriname - working together to create an invaluable training experience.

Participating units will train on their equipment and employ tactics to complete various warrior training tasks and battle drills, such as urban combat operations, land navigation, survival, escape and evasion, first aid, casualty evacuation, and day and night convoy operations.

Col. James Webster, the acting commander of troops for Golden Coyote, told exercise participants that they must focus on the need for personnel and equipment accountability, along with an emphasis on quality training over the next two weeks.
"These are the keys to your success," he said.

Guard officials also said that a commitment to the safety of all personnel involved in Golden Coyote is a top priority. All procedures, plans and contact information were outlined for the exercise, drawing particular attention to evacuation procedures and locations due to inclement weather or additional unforeseen circumstances.

Created in the mid 1980's by the South Dakota National Guard, with the cooperation of the National Forest Service and Custer State Park, the Golden Coyote training exercise will allow nearly 2,200 service members to be brought together into a combined joint task force with a mission to provide force protection, humanitarian aid, and infrastructure improvement in a realistic training environment and provide valuable services to the public.