New York Army National Guard Soldiers head to Puerto Rico Today for Training Exercise
NEW YORK (12/10/2014)(readMedia)-- 180 New York Army National Guard Soldiers are conducting a three-day training exercise in Puerto Rico Dec. 11-13.
150 New York Army National Guard Soldiers from the Manhattan- based 1st Battalion 69th Infantry left for Puerto Rico today from Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh and Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey. They will return on Sunday.
They will be joining 30 Soldiers from the New York Army National Guard's Company B, 3rd Battalion 142nd Aviation, based at Ronkonkoma, who loaded three UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters on New York Air National Guard C-17 cargo aircraft and flew to Puerto Rico on Tuesday, Dec. 9.
The C-17s are flown by the 105th Airlift Wing at Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh.
The Soldiers will be conducting tactical training at the Puerto Rico Army National Guard's Camp Santiago Training Facility. The training will focus on defense and offensive operations, integrated with air assault tactics employing the helicopters of the 3rd Battalion 142nd Aviation.
The Camp Santiago facility is being used for the training mission because the weather offers a better training climate in December and it allows the troops to practice moving and fighting in a tropical environment. Conducting training in Puerto Rico also allows the Soldiers to practice the logistical skills needed to deploy troops overseas.
Soldiers from the 1-69th Infantry responded to the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001 and served in Iraq in 2004-2005 and in Afghanistan in 2008.