Military News

Monday, March 09, 2015

Elite, joint communications unit completes Warrior Spirit '15

by Senior Airman Ned T. Johnston
6th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

3/6/2015 - MACDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The Joint Communications Support Element kicked off their annual exercise Warrior Spirit March 2 through March 6, 2015, on MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.

The JCSE is an elite, specially trained group of communications experts with the unique mission to provide immediate deployment support to regional combatant commands within 72 hours, facilitating a full spectrum of global operations. They are among the first boots on the ground setting up forms of communications in U.S. Central Command and U.S. Africa Commands' area of responsibility.

"We're doing this training to make sure our teams are ready for whatever might come their way the next time they deploy," said Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Miller, JCSE troop sergeant. "Warrior Spirit is an awesome training tool, but it also gives us a way to gauge where the teams might need additional training."

Warrior Spirit started with two physical days, meant to tear the teams down physically and mentally and simulate the fatigue they would feel from long hours in a deployed location.

Teams completed numerous ruck marches, a 1.5-mile log carry, multiple laps rowing a boat through the waters of Hillsborough Bay, low crawl and buddy carry scenarios, an obstacle course, and shooting sequences to test weapon proficiencies.

The exercise continued the next day with members of the JCSE conducting technical training at two simulated remote locations. As one team setup their equipment on the base's shoreline, another team traveled by boat to a secluded island to test their rapid-deployment capabilities and ability to communicate worldwide using two-way satellite and radio communications.

"This portion of the exercise is the most important part by far; making sure that these teams can stand up communications from remote locations is the heart of our mission," stated Miller.

Finishing the exercise, the element came together for a day of team building by completing a 65-foot-tall ropes course and group exercises that tested unit cohesion.

"In the end, the teams learned that they could push themselves to do things that they thought were impossible," said Miller. "They worked hard and got the mission done together. They're ready for whatever comes their way."

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