March 29, 2012
By Sgt. Steven Peterson
FORT DRUM, N.Y. — Soldiers from 693rd Engineer Company, 7th Engineer Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade, conducted a series of Sapper training events this month to teach new Soldiers tricks of the trade.
The training began with veteran Soldiers of the company teaching new engineers how to build different explosives for door breaching. The squads were given the supplies to construct the different breach explosives they had learned over the training period.
“This was a big mission, and I am very glad to get these younger Soldiers the training that they need for future operations,” said Sgt. David McCoy, a squad leader in 693rd Engineer Company. “It is important that we see how the different types of items we use can help you in our job.”
Once all of the types of explosives were constructed, the squads moved to the range, where they would see how effective these charges would be. Each squad moved through the lane to expend their explosives, and they learned which type would be the best
depending on the make and type of door that needed to be breached.
All of the events covered over the course of past few weeks were put to test on the last day of the field exercise. Soldiers loaded onto a UH-60 Black Hawk as a squad-sized element and moved to a drop area. Once the squad arrived, they were briefed, given explosives and time to plan out how they would breach a shoot house to which they then navigated.
“Five out of the seven Soldiers that are in my squad have never flown on a UH-60 before today,” McCoy said. “It is always good to see the Soldiers have a good time doing something they want to do for the Army.”
The different squads breached the shoot house and performed room clearing to make sure the house was clear of all enemies. The events taught the Soldiers skills they would need in a deployed environment.
“I really like all that I have learned during this field exercise,” said Pvt. Tyler Martin, a Soldier in 693rd Engineer Company. “It was good for the sergeants to teach us what we would need to know for these different types of events.”