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Posted: March 15, 2018 9:30 a.m.
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Spartans armor-up


Capt. Jordan Woodburn, commander of Co. B, 3-67 Armor, 2nd ABCT, 3rd ID, explains the importance of thorough inventories to his Soldiers Feb. 28 at Fort Stewart. The Soldiers must inventory all equipment before signing for their newly received M1A1 Abrams tanks. This shipment is the first of three tank shipments the brigade will receive.

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The first shipment of M1A1 Situational Awareness Abrams tanks arrived to the 3rd Infantry Division’s “Spartan” Brigade on Feb. 26-28 at Fort Stewart. 

One year after the U.S. Army designated the 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team as their 15th ABCT, tanks started to roll in and Spartan Brigade Soldiers began familiarizing themselves with the new combat platform. 

The M1A1 SA is one of the three major ground combat systems that comprises an ABCT.  The M2A2 Bradley Fighting Vehicle and the M109A6 Paladin Self-propelled howitzer are being fielded concurrently by the brigade’s infantry and field artillery units.

The first two units to receive the tanks are 6th Squadron, 8th Cavalry Regiment and 3rd Combined Arms Battalion, 67th Armor Regiment. This shipment is one of three the brigade will be receiving. 

“Receiving these tanks will be the last phase in our squadron officially converting from an infantry reconnaissance squadron to an armored reconnaissance squadron," said Capt. Freddy Mitchell, commander of Troop D, 6-8 Cav. "For the past six months, our troopers have sat through several classes and completed more than 250 hours of simulated training to prepare for this moment.”

Mitchell said the intent was execute as much training as possible before drawing the tanks so they knew exactly what to do when the combat systems arrived.

Once the tanks were drawn from the staging area, the Soldiers began equipment inventories and operator-level maintenance training. 

Operational fielding is one of many steps to ensure individuals, crew and units are trained. The fielding will be complete in mid-May.

Capt. Jordan Woodburn, commander of B Company, 3-67 AR said, “Drawing the tanks will set us up for the ability to conduct crew gunnery, collective gunnery and combined arms live-fire exercises. Eventually we will certify at a combat training center and deploy to wherever the U.S. Army tells us to go.” 


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