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SITREP for 4 – 16 DEC 16

Our focus these past two weeks was our battalion change of command, company inbriefs with LTC McChrystal, planning for D Co’s gunnery in JAN 17, planning for PLT LFX in FEB 17, preparation for Holiday block leave, and executing the myriad of company-level training described below.

Several great news stories:
We celebrated 1SG Jacob Gilmer earning his Master Parachutists Badge. He conducted his 65th jump with his son, who exited at the same time on his 3rd jump in Airborne School at Fort Benning.

- 1st Squad, 1st Platoon, A Co won the 3BCT Best Squad Competition held on 7 DEC

- SSG Booth (HHC), SPC McGoff (HHC), 2LT Inman (HHC), and SPC Aldeano (A Co) graduated from the Pre-Ranger Course this week.

- SGT Fuentes and SPC Tolson (medics from HHC) earned their Expert Field Medical Badge this week at Fort Benning.

- 1-508 PIR got 163 Paratroopers onto the Operation Toy Drop jump last weekend, where our Paratroopers earned foreign parachutist badges.

- We welcomed three new company commanders last week (CPT Roubicek to HHC, CPT Gavin to A Co, and CPT Joshua to J Co). We also conducted a BN change of command where we welcomed LTC McChrystal as the new battalion commander.

On 14 DEC we had 43 Paratroopers jump onto Normandy DZ. These are primarily x3s and x2s through January, as well as personnel that need the Daytime Hollywood jump for the proper proficiency. Jumpers executed tactical assembly and a ground tactical P+1 mission in true LGOP fashion despite being from across all companies in the battalion.

Last week, 37 Paratroopers from HHC/1-508 PIR conducted Tactical Combat Casualty Combat Care (TC3) focusing on evaluation, treatment, and packaging of casualties. Our medics executed patient care while in contact, ground evacuation, casualty hand-over, and AEROMEDEVAC operations with 3/82CAB (storyboard attached).

1-508 PIR’s S2 Section conducted RAVEN UAS and OSRVT training at the All American DZ on 08 DEC, successfully re-certifying 3 Paratroopers on RAVEN operations, plus an additional 3 Paratroopers from 1-505 PIR. On 12 DEC, A Co executed a tactical-focused squad competition in Area J, which included a ruck run, call for fire, land navigation, and 9-line medevac event.

From 29 NOV – 1 DEC, 87 Paratroopers from B/1-508 PIR conducted Team Live Fire Exercises on Range 76. All 16 Fire Teams from B Co executed successful LFXs to standard as outlined by STP 21-1 SMCT (storyboard attached). Last week, B Co also executed a CLS class to certify 16 Paratroopers in the company, bringing B Co to over 95% CLS qualified (storyboard attached).

C Co executed an M4 zero and qualification range on 13-14 DEC, where Paratroopers conducted concurrent training on the M3 RAWWS Carl Gustav and worked on their team bounding techniques in preparation for TM LFX in JAN.

On 1 DEC, D/1-508 PIR Co slung 2 x M1151A1s and 2 x M1167s from Creswell LZ to Monroe LZ. D Co recertified 5 Pathfinders and 10 Air Assault-qualified Paratroopers on sling load operations and PZ control in the process, and also familiarized Paratroopers with rigging and hookup procedures for the M1167, M1151A1 (CROWS), A22 Cargo Bag, and Cargo Net. Range OIC (1LT Meinert) and RSO/PZCO (SSG(P) Blasey) did outstanding work planning and coordinating this training, and their efforts were noted by the Pilot-in-Command as the smoothest and most professional Slingload training he has done with any unit on FBNC (storyboard attached).

On the maintenance and equipment line of effort, J Co conducted services on 297 weapons, 35 NVGs, and 5 vehicles. HHC laterally transferred 52 bayonets to 2-508 PIR. 1-508 PIR executed PBIC-K transfers this past week. Ahead of the DRE, the BN has made significant head-way preparing shoring for all our vehicles and conducting MASA inspections on 28 pieces of rolling stock.

Our efforts to increase personnel readiness over the past weeks included a BN-wide SRP on 13 DEC to administer Typhoid shots to each Paratrooper. In 48 hours the BN achieved a 93.21% Typhoid immunization completion rate.

D/1-508 PIR’s sling load training on 1 DEC lifted four uparmored HMMWVs using standard dual point rigging procedures from FM 4.20.199 (in the case of the M1167s) or interim dual-point rigging procedures developed by D Co through the Aerial Delivery & Field Services Department (ADFSD) at Fort Lee for an M1151A1 with CROWS mounted. D/1-508 PIR is currently the only unit in the Army to slingload this vehicle configuration (see again attached storyboard).

1-508 PIR had 4 Paratroopers graduate from the Pre-Ranger Course on 14 DEC, and 2 medics from HHC earned their Expert Field Medical Badge this week down at Fort Benning.

We sent 7 leaders to the Airborne Leader Course on Monday and we have 3 Paratroopers graduating Master Resiliency Training this week. Additionally, we sent 11 Paratroopers to FOO/Pay Agent training last week.

On 07 DEC, company DTMS representatives received a staff assistance visit and LPD from CPT Thimble, the 3 BCT DTMS manager. CPT Thimble provided instruction, shared best practices, and helped our team overcome common errors for uploading data into our DTMS system (storyboard attached).

For retention, by the end of the quarter, 1-508 PIR will be 11 of 13 Initial FY18, 6 of 7 Mid-Careerist FY18, and 3 of 1 Careerist FY18. We currently have 6 initial term reenlistments upcoming. 1 mid-term has already reenlisted (not showing yet), and we have 1 mid-term reenlisting this week.

On 14DEC16, B Co 1-508PIR sent 14 Paratroopers to Westarea Elementary School IOT serve the local community and build bonds of trust between Paratroopers and civilians. The Paratroopers participated in variety of activities including reading books to the children, playing games during recess, assisting the teachers with their lessons and talk about what it means to be a Paratrooper in the US Army..

On 8DEC16, Alpha Company Paratroopers and their families participated in an FRG event at Fun, Fun, Fun.

On 8 DEC, 1-508 PIR unveiled famed artist James Dietz's newest painting, "Fury From the Sky," which details the actions of the 508 PIR on Hill 30 following the airborne assault into Normandy, France. Mr. Dietz and CSM (ret) Kenneth “Rock” Merritt spoke at the unveiling, and CSM Merritt honored 1Fury’s leaders with his recount of his time on Hill 30 in 1944. Mr. Dietz and CSM Merritt signed and personalized over 200 prints after the unveiling (storyboard attached).

1-508 PIR’s focus over the next two weeks will be block leave, maintaining training with our Rear Detachment and finalizing planning for the DRE, D Co gunnery in January, and PLT LFXs in February.


MAJ Dru Rhodes
1-508 PIR Operations Officer
3BCT, 82nd ABN DIV

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