Home : Media : News : News Article View

First Army Reserve Indoor Rifle Range to Open in American Samoa

By Crista Mary Mack | April 12, 2019

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa -- Army Reserve Soldiers of American Samoa will soon train at the first indoor rifle range in the Army Reserve, a Modular Small Arms Range scheduled for a grand opening the end of April.

"The sons and daughters of American Samoa serving in the Armed Forces will have the single best indoor training facility in the Army," Brigadier Gen. Douglas Anderson, 9th Mission Support Command Commanding General, said. "We are providing our Soldiers in American Samoa state of the art training facilities and the ability to conduct training at home, keeping these Citizen Soldiers with their families and employers to the maximum extent possible."

Prior to this construction, Soldiers of the region flew to Hawaii to conduct their regular required training. Now with the training site locally based, Soldiers will be able to complete their annual requirements without having to leave home to do so.

"We need to train our Soldiers to be ready so that when they are called to go in harms' way they can meet the challenge but also defeat the enemy," Jon Lee, 9th MSC civilian executive officer, said. "They are all serving our country to protect our freedoms. So we are giving them the newest and best to train and succeed."

"We have a commitment to the community to build the Soldiers' readiness so they can be ready at their home station which lessens their time away from their families," Lee said.

Lee, a retired general officer and former 100th Battalion, 442nd Infantry Regiment commander, his first unit was the American Samoa-based 100th Battalion, B Co., in 1984. Years later he deployed with American Samoan Soldiers in 2004 to Operation Iraqi Freedom and recalled what the Soldiers previously endured in order to train for said deployment.

"The first time the 100th Battalion was mobilized to go to Iraq, the Soldiers of American Samoa spent almost 9 months to train and get certified," he recalled. "So that's almost two years they were away from home. It shouldn't be that way."

"The Army is committed to the training and readiness, for the people of American Samoa who have sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, wives, husbands who serve, and we are bringing in a State of the Art facility, the first of its kind for their sons and daughters," Lee said. "We are bringing them the best of the best so that they can maximize to train in their local area."

"We now have a greater chance to focus on the mission and training instead of spending a whole day at the shooting range," Staff Sgt. Faiupu Tagaleo'o, unit supply sergeant for Theater Support Group- Pacific, American Samoa. "Now we don't have to travel 5,000 miles or 10,000 miles to qualify with weapons. We can do it right here at home."

Other Army Reserve Soldiers of American Samoa expressed similar sentiments.

"I support the building of MSAR because I won't have to wait a whole year for Annual Training to shoot," Sgt. K. Moetala, C. Co. 100th Battalion, 442nd Inf. Regt. said. "Also I get to train but I will be spending more time with my family."

Furthermore, Lee stated, the MSAR is safe.

"It has zero escape for a round, 100 percent containment, from the ceiling to the walls to the ground," he specified. "We issue ammo inside the building, with the doors closed and lock the building while firing. We take accountability of spent casings. We do accountability before we open the room again."

The MSAR is also environmentally safe, with a filtration system so the fumes and gases released from the weapons are filtered. An additional benefit of the indoor facility, not only is it environmentally sound, but contains literal sound within from insulation.

"Noise abatement measures have been taken so that our community neighbors aren't listening to the sounds of the rifle range during a training weekend," said Anderson.

While maintaining U.S. Army Safety standards during use of the facility, the existence of the facility will also enable law enforcement and other security and protection entities such as the Department of Homeland Security and the Coast Guard, access to train.

Through the duration of construction, 9th MSC has hosted three community town halls continuing the relationship with its neighbors.

"Thanks to the community for participating in the three community engagements that we've held," Anderson said. "Safety is a priority for the Army Reserve and the Modular Small Arms Range is safe and we welcome any opportunity to show this."

CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
235,102
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
Tri-service Team Offloads Marine Corps Cargo at Pearl Harbor
Marines offload a Cobra helicopter from the M/V Green Lake during discharge operations at Pearl Harbor on May 7.
May 17, 2019 - PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii -- 599th Transportation Brigade personnel facilitated offload of U.S. Marine

Amphibious Force 7th Fleet Holds Change of Command
Rear Adm. Fred Kacher, commander, Expeditionary Strike Group 7, relieves Rear Adm. Bradley Cooper aboard amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) during an Amphibious Force 7th Fleet change of command ceremony held aboard the flagship, May 17.  Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet is the Navy’s only forward-deployed amphibious force, headquartered at White Beach Naval Facility in Okinawa, Japan, and is responsible for the full range of expeditionary operations from disaster relief to crisis response in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations
May 17, 2019 - SASEBO, Japan -- Rear Adm. Fred Kacher assumed command of Amphibious Force 7th Fleet from Rear Adm.

Airmen Exercise Readiness in Beverly Morning 19-01
374th Security Forces Squadron Airmen clear a building during an active shooter scenario during exercise Beverly Morning 19-01, May 13, 2019, at Yokota Air Base, Japan. Yokota Airmen participated in simulated war-time scenarios including active shooter scenario, rapid runway repair and a mass-casualty incident.
May 17, 2019 - YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Yokota Air Base members participated in the week-long readiness exercise

Camp Zama's JROTC Battalion Welcomes New Cadet Commander
Retired Lt. Col. Douglas Fields, right, a Zama JROTC instructor, passes the guidon to Cadet Lt. Col. Maxwell Orlosky, a junior at Zama American Middle High School, the incoming
May 17, 2019 - CAMP ZAMA, Japan -- Zama American Middle High School's Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps'

U.S., Allied Forces Begin La Perouse Exercises with French Aircraft Carrier in Gulf of Bengal
In this file photo, the French Marine Nationale aircraft carrier FS Charles De Gaulle (R91) transits the Red Sea, April 15, 2019. The John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central Region, connecting the Mediterranean and the Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points.
May 16, 2019 - GULF OF BENGAL -- Ships from the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force