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Posted: August 10, 2018 2:51 p.m.
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Hounds hang fire

Courtesy Photo/

Soldiers with HHC, 3-67 Armor 2ABCT, 3rd ID, fire illumination to light up the impact area during a live fire exercise July 31-Aug. 1 at Fort Stewart.

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Mortar men from 3rd Battalion, 67th Armor Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, completed their Mortar Training and Evaluation Program certification at Mortar Point Four, Fort Stewart, July 31-Aug. 1.

The combined arms battalion from the Spartan Brigade sent their indirect fire infantrymen and M1064A3 mortar carriers to certify their skills during the three – day training event. 

MORTEP evaluates a mortar platoon on all mortar specific tactical tasks and certifies their ability to deliver timely and accurate fires in support of combat operations.

“The training we are conducting this week goes a long way in preparing us for the demands of combat,” said Staff Sgt. Stephen Schenkel, platoon sergeant, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3-67 Armor. “The missions that we receive here in training are the same that we would receive with troops in combat and it ensures that we are prepared to provide accurate and timely fires for the brigade.” 

Training events like these are also an opportunity to introduce newly arrived Soldiers to their equipment, test the proficiencies of a section, and build confidence within crews.

“Our crews are all newly assembled, so training like this provides us the ability to get hands on and perfect our skills in a live fire setting,” said Schenkel. 

Mortars are a valuable combat multiplier for a commander. A platoon’s ability to deliver precision fires is a welcomed asset for 2nd Brigade, expanding its arsenal by delivering munitions of high explosive against personnel and equipment providing both fragmentation and blast effect in addition to smoke used for screening the battlefield.

“The value that an accurate mortar platoon adds to the fight, is hard to measure. Accurate indirect fire produces a demoralizing effect on the enemy and can be achieved by delivering the maximum number of rounds from all the mortars, in the shortest possible time,” said Sgt. Mitchell Colley, fire direction center chief, HHC, 3-67 Armor.

MORTEP provides added value allowing Soldiers to hone their tactical skills and develop their leadership abilities.

 “As a young leader, it’s great to be able to get here with my men and train them up using live rounds,” said squad leader Spc. Dominic Guzzo, HHC, 3-67 Armor, 2ABCT.

Live fire certifications enable indirect fire infantrymen to refine their procedures and tactics as the Spartan Brigade continues its transition from an infantry to armored brigade combat team.

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