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Posted: September 7, 2018 10:35 a.m.
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Preparing for Warfighter

Sgt. Elizabeth White/

Sgt. Eric Lopez, an information technology specialist, and Sgt. 1st Class Gerald Jeffcoat, a cyber network defender, both with HHC, STB, 3rd IDSB, set up an expansible van Aug. 21 at Fort Stewart, in preparation for CPX II.

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Elements are spread throughout the battlefield and it is up to the S6 communications section to maintain the flow of information. Through technical and tactical proficiency, these Soldiers keep the 3rd Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade online and informed.

During the last week of August, units in the 3rd ID participated in the second command post exercise. This exercise is one of three to prepare the units for the Warfighter exercise taking place at the end of the year. 

The brigade’s objective for CPX II was to provide fire support, information management and analysis, and to practice moving mission command. 

Communications Soldiers in Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Special Troops Battalion, 3rd IDSB, worked 24 hours a day to provide the brigade with communication services.

“S6 is providing lower tactical internet in terms of FM radio, tactical site radio and Joint Capabilities Release Blue Force Tracker to the tactical operations center and the [brigade] commander so that he can have situational awareness of what division [headquarters] and the rest of the brigades are doing,” said 1st Lt. Garrett Warren, the officer in charge of command and control and current operations for HHC, STB, 3rd IDSB.

Not only does the section provide lower tactical internet, or basic communication tools, they also provide higher level security services that elevate communication in a field environment. Leaders are also able to use chatrooms provided by S6 to effectively communicate to other command groups in the division.

“We are also providing upper tactical internet in terms of Command Post of the Future, Transverse and Ventrilo chatrooms so that the other units can combine information in regards to sustainment and logistics so that we are all on the same page as a division.”

Along with providing these services to the brigade, the communications personnel also had to assist with user issues with accessing the sites, maintaining portal capabilities and keeping the lines of communication open. There were learning opportunities for these Soldiers to work with equipment they would have to use in future exercises.

“This is my third time in the field as network operations and so far it’s been a good experience,” said Sgt. Chris Sturtevant, an information technology specialist with HHC, STB, 3rd IDSB. “I’ve gotten more hands-on experience with the equipment and I will walk away with more knowledge than I had [before] we came out here.”

All of these lessons learned during CPXII will improve the communications section going into CPXIII and Warfighter where they will be training to rapidly deploy and engage with enemies while maintaining combat power. The S6 will be able to provide more services for the brigade to keep the Providers ready to fight.

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