Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Feb. 9, 2015

3rd Brigade Combat Team Gunnery Ensures Readiness, Builds Cohesion

By Sgt. Samuel Northrup, U.S. Army

A cold wind swept across the land in the early morning as a Bradley made its way into position. Inside the 27 tons of steel, a crew scanned for targets in the area while another Bradley moved up nearby. Suddenly, a deafening and repeating boom was heard as one of the Bradley's opened fire with its main gun, followed by bursts from its M240C Machine Gun.

With targets destroyed, the two Bradley Fighting Vehicles pressed on through the seemingly endless and unforgiving terrain.

This was part of the gunnery skills training for members of 3rd Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division. 3-8 Cav. held gunnery Feb. 5-8 at Rodriguez Live Fire Complex. The gunnery, which will be one of the last ones 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team will conduct before rotating out, included training for Bradley Fighting Vehicles and M1A2 Abrams Tanks.

The Soldiers of 3-8 Cav. are on a nine-month rotation to South Korea and currently fall under the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division.

Inside every tri-color camouflage-painted Bradley is a three-member crew of Soldiers, each with a specific job that is important for the successful operation of these lethal machines. The crew is comprised of: a driver that operates and positions the vehicle to fire on target, a gunner who locates targets and employs its weapons systems, and a Bradley commander who commands and supervises all operations of the vehicle.

Crewmembers must train on Gunnery Table V and qualify on Gunnery Table VI in order to sustain their communication, technical and firing skills.

"A big part of the operation within the vehicle is the crew's fire commands, which is the communication among the BC, gunner, and driver," said Staff Sgt. Jose Trejo, the company master gunner for Company B, 3-8 Cav. "An engagement cannot even begin without the BC acknowledging there is a target. A gunner cannot fire without the acknowledgment or the command of execution, and a driver cannot move the vehicle without the BC saying 'driver up or driver down.'"

Before training on gunnery table V and VI, crews trained in the Bradley Advanced Training System, which is a simulation of tasks they performed on the other gunnery tables, said Trejo. During that time, they will perfect their communication and firing drills. Crew cohesiveness was 75 percent of the performed task.

"We have to be a team of three doing three jobs equally well to ensure we stay alive in a combat situation," said 1st Lt. Mitch Figgat, a platoon leader with Co. B. "That team cohesion is built by spending hours and hours in the brad, syncing movements and engaging targets. A lot of training has to be done because that communication has to be extremely efficient and succinct."

In order to perform their jobs equally well, the crewmembers learn each other's duties to ensure everyone is ready to perform any position when necessary, said Figgat.

"The cross training goes as far as the dismounted squads," said Trejo. "The squads will come out and train with some of the mounted guys; the crew will train the squad to task and go over scenarios or any gunnery skills that the mounted guys would do out here. We are never supposed to have a block where we cannot fill a Bradley crew position."

All the crews arrived here from Fort Hood, Texas already qualified, said Figgat. This gunnery was an opportunity for the crews to perfect their skills in order to be ready to fight tonight. They need to become masters of their craft in order to be better than the enemy they will fight.

"Upon successful completion of the gunnery, the lethality of the crew will fully developed," said Trejo. "The commander knows at any given time he can call that crew, push that platoon or section forward, and know that they will engage and destroy the enemy with that vehicle."
CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
324,170
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast Returns Home After 55-day Counter Narcotics Patrol
The crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast takes a photograph in Manzanillo, Mexico, with two men they rescued during a deployment in the Eastern Pacific Ocean June 10, 2022. The men were lost at sea for 23 days after their vessel was beset by weather. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Brad O'Brien)
June 24, 2022 - ASTORIA, Ore. — The United States Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast (WMEC 623) returned to homeport Saturday following a 55-day counter narcotics deployment to the Eastern Pacific Ocean.The 210-foot medium endurance cutter and...

Army Alaska National Guard, HHC 297th Regional Support Group Soldiers Contribute To Role Playing Operations During Khaan Quest 2022
On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan Quest, nations were able to showcase their resolve in peacekeeping missions around the world.

Soldiers, Spc. Hunter Mains and Spc. Kyle Johnson with the Army Alaska National Guard, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 297th Regional Support Group contributed a major role in CPX operations which had them role play in several different scenarios. 

Both Soldiers also participated at the end of the exercise mock press conference. The press conference is designed to prepare peacekeepers and military leaders for questions that may be asked of them during stressful situations. Johnson and Mains roleplayed as journalists asking the questions. 

Pictured here the CPX participants listen to the news conference brief given by the military leadership in a role playing scenerio.
June 23, 2022 - Mongolia -- On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan...

Juneteenth Celebrated by Department of the Air Force Leaders in Pentagon’s First Official Ceremony
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr., speaks to a crowd of attendees during a Juneteenth Celebration at the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., June 21, 2022. Brown’s message highlighted the importance of promoting an inclusive culture for all Airmen and Guardians to be able to serve to their fullest potential. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Elora J. McCutcheon)
June 22, 2022 - ARLINGTON, Va. (AFNS) -- Hundreds gathered to celebrate the Juneteenth holiday through song, dance, poetry and storytelling at the first official Juneteenth ceremony held at the Pentagon June 21.  Attended by...

Pacific Partnership Kicks Off in Vietnam
PHU YEN, VIETNAM (June 20, 2022) – Captain Hank Kim, Pacific Partnership 2022 mission commander, left, delivers remarks during the Pacific Partnership Vietnam opening ceremony. Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Brandie Nuzzi)
June 21, 2022 - PHU YEN, Vietnam -- Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. In Vietnam, the Pacific...

SECNAV Visits Innovative Forward Deployed Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22
U.S. Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro greets U.S. Marine Corps Col. Christopher Steele, the commanding officer of Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) 22, during a visit with MRF-D 22 at Royal Australian Air Force Base Darwin, June 18, 2022. Secretary Del Toro visited Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22 and Australian Defence Force personnel as part of the Indo-Pacific battlefield circulation. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Emeline Molla)
June 21, 2022 - DARWIN, AUSTRALIA. – The Honorable Carlos Del Toro, the 78th Secretary of the Navy, visited Marines and Sailors with the Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) on June 18.As part of a battlefield circulation tour in the...