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Movement Control Battalion Trains for Afghanistan Mission

By 2nd Lt. Anthony D. Buchanan, USA
Special to American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Feb. 2, 2007 – Soldiers of the 450th Movement Control Battalion are training here to ensure that they will be able to accomplish their mission when they deploy to Afghanistan in a few months.

Click photo for screen-resolution image
A soldier assigned to the 450th Movement Control Battalion searches for threats around his vehicle during training on Camp Atterbury, Ind. Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Peter Eustaquio, USA

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

In Afghanistan, the soldiers, based out of Manhattan, Kan., will be responsible for ensuring that necessities like food, water and ammunition are delivered to the troops in the field.

The battalion will be charged with monitoring, controlling and supervising the movement of personnel, equipment and cargo. Although they are a movement control unit and specialize mostly in transportation tasks, all of the soldiers of the 450th MCB received additional training that they’ll need in Afghanistan.

“The training we received was very thorough and detailed,” said Staff Sgt. Belinda Hilton, a human resource specialist with 450th MCB. “I learned a lot from vehicle and personnel searches, but actually, doing what we learned was the best part of the training. We will be a better team once we get there. The training has helped the unit come together as a whole.”

Spc. Brain Gerriets, a transportation management coordinator with the unit, was also grateful for the “theater immersion” training.

“Entry control point training is definitely going to come in handy,” Gerriets said. “At the (forward operating base), they really hit us hard with non-stop training, giving us the confidence we are going to need when we go overseas. They definitely challenged us and made us think. Overall, the training was really good. It’s going to be very useful.”

In addition to their training preparing them for their upcoming mission, the soldiers said they were very pleased with their trainers, mostly volunteers with combat experience participating in the Operation Warrior Training Program.

“We had very good relationships between the trainers and trainees,” said Hilton. “They are not here just to teach, but to help us understand.”

(Army 2nd Lt. Anthony D. Buchanan is assigned to Camp Atterbury Public Affairs.)

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