• September 22, 2014

Steel Dragons guarding the gate

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Posted: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 4:30 am

Soldiers from 2nd “Steel Dragons” Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, stand vigilant at the Clear Creek Access Control Point on a daily basis, and have done so for nearly three months.

Along with the job came the inherited responsibility of ensuring the safety of every soldier, employee, and family member on post.

Some of the guards, when asked about their duties, speak of long and hot days; others of late and uneventful nights.

“Being at the gate, I have met a variety of military personnel,” said Sgt. 1st Class Peter Rivera, noncommissioned officer in charge of the gate detail.

“I’ve met active duty, reservist, National Guard, retirees and their families. Some people want to present their ID card and leave, some want to stay and tell you about their Vietnam War stories and others ask for directions.”

Soldiers go through a one-week training program to learn the particulars of the job. Some have job-related experience learned while on overseas duty.

“This detail reminds me of when I was deployed, conducting security at the entry control points and also when pulling 24-hour duty back at my deployed unit,” said Spc. Ronald Gray, a Steel Dragon soldier assigned as a Clear Creek Gate guard.

During the course of the duty, soldiers learned to deal with a number of situations in a sometimes fast-paced environment, said Staff Sgt. Chad Heath, a guard at the Clear Creek gate, assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battery.

Although he said this duty has broadened his experience as a leader, he echoed a similar tone resonated by others: they are ready to return to their regular jobs and get back to doing what they like doing best, being field artillery soldiers.

 

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