By Spc. Angel Turner, 4th BCT, 1st Cav. Div. PAOMarch 19, 2012
FORT HOOD, Texas--Soldiers assigned to 2nd Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, sharpened their basic level skill tasks during the unit's Thunder Horse Warrior Stakes March 5-9.
During the first three days of the training, Soldiers rotated through 19 stations and performed tasks which included execute a mounted patrol, react to contact, establish security and evacuate a casualty.
"It's important that each Soldier knows the basic skill level tasks because they are Soldiers twenty-four seven," said Staff Sgt. Rahamane Cisse, an infantryman section leader assigned to Company A, 2nd Bn., 12th Cav. Reg.
Soldiers from every company went through the training. Every Trooper trained on each of the tasks and was assessed to ensure they could consistently perform them to standard.
"By everyone going through the training together, you have cohesion across the battalion," said Cisse, who is from Denver. "Regardless of MOS (military occupation specialty), we are Soldiers first and our responsibility is to know the basic skill level tasks so we can carry out the mission whenever."
Soldiers recently out of basic training and advanced individual training trained alongside Soldiers with multiple deployments and of all ranks. "Thunder Horse" troopers helped their fellow Soldiers learn as much as possible to become fully proficient in the basic skill level tasks.
"The overall training of Thunder Warrior Stakes is going to give (Soldiers) the exposure to different tasks and skills that every Soldier needs, whether it be on the battlefield or in a training environment," said Spc. Terry Beck, a medic assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Bn., 12th Cav. Reg. "This training gives (the Army) a more rounded Soldier that is able to perform the essential skills that are asked of them everyday," said Beck, who is from Austin, Texas.
Beck, who helped instruct the casualty evacuation lanes, added, "I feel that if you don't practice these skills on a regular basis, you are going to start losing them. Also, when you do this type of training, you always learn something new."
During the final two days of the training, Soldiers went in teams through simulated training missions that tested the previous days' training. Soldiers conducted a dismounted patrol and responded to enemy contact, evaluated and evacuated causalities and established an over watch position of a notional urban area.
With rain falling, Soldiers ran through puddles, trees, and fields to complete their mission, showcasing their newly honed skills and the ability to work as a team.
"We all operate as a team. If only one person is good at something, what happens if that person goes down and everyone else doesn't know how to do the task? We train on a collective level so everyone has the same training," stated Sgt. Robert Mosley, an electronic warfare operator assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Bn., 12th Cav. Reg., and a native of the Bronx, N. Y.