Posts Tagged ‘1st Cavalry Division’
Spc. Kathy Hysong, a Baker City, Ore., native, and a medic with 15th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, U.S. Division – North, manually provides oxygen to a simulated patient during an exercise conducted at the Troop Medical Clinic on Contingency Operating Base Warhorse, Iraq, June 6, 2011. Hysong serves as a healthcare specialist and is also a member of the evacuation platoon. (U.S. Army photo by 1st Lt. Tiara Walz)
Whether treating a soldier with a cold or helping save the life of a wounded warrior, there is always something to keep a medic busy while deployed.
A typical day for Spc. Kathy Hysong begins with patient care during sick call hours at the Troop Medical Clinic at Contingency Operating Base Warhorse, Iraq. The remainder of her day is dedicated to preparing for any medical evacuations.
Hysong, a healthcare specialist with Company C, 15th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, U.S. Division – North, plays a versatile role as a medic assigned to the evacuation platoon.
“We typically work in the clinic during sick call,” she said, “but we always have to be ready to do an evacuation if necessary.”
Staying active is important for the medics who evacuate patients.
An evacuation platoon soldier’s job often involves loading patients wearing full combat gear into vehicles and providing patient care while en route to a larger facility.
En route care is the most important part of an evacuation medic’s job, said Hysong, a native of Baker City, Ore.
“I am responsible for keeping the patient [stabilized] from our level of care to the next,” she said.
“Patient care during evacuations is just as important as the treatment they receive in the clinic,” said Staff Sgt. Shirlee Burton, evacuation platoon non-commissioned officer in charge. “Without that en route care, the patient may die.”
Hysong spends a large portion of her day with her fellow evacuation platoon members preparing for evacuation emergencies.
Training for combat is very important, said Burton. “If you haven’t trained to standard and if you make a mistake, people’s lives are in danger.”
Burton has already noticed improvements in Hysong’s performance because of the training.
“She has improved tremendously,” said Burton. “Actually doing real-life medical evacuations has made her realize the importance of her job and the training that is required.”
Although being part of an evacuation platoon is a large responsibility for a young medic, Hysong said her job helps keep soldiers alive.
2nd Lt. Alyson Randall
2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, U.S. Division-North
Sgt. James Quatro enlisted in the 105th Military Police Company, New York Army National Guard, to be a part of something greater than himself.
Answering the call of duty, the military policeman recently deployed to Iraq, attached to Task Force Shield, 4th Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, in support of Operation New Dawn.
His mission involves advising and training Iraqi Security Forces in U.S. Division – North, helping to make the ISF a sustainable force for their country.
“Since I was little, I always wanted to be a soldier,” said Quatro, a native of Rochester, N.Y. “My grandfather served in Korea, and I wanted to honor him.”
Quatro trains his Iraqi counterparts on tactics to increase their overall proficiency as policemen, including counter-improvised explosive device procedures and rifle fundamentals.
“Weapons have always been my strong point, and I enjoy teaching,” said Quatro, who said he is knowledgeable on a wide variety of weapon systems.
Since arriving in Iraq, Quatro conducted two iterations of AK-47 training to help Iraqi emergency response battalions become proficient on their rifles.
“We build our relationship with ISF through this training,” said 1st Lt. Joshua Bode, a platoon leader assigned to 105th MP Company.
Serving as a team leader, Quatro is the primary instructor in his squad and is an asset to the squad and company, Bode added.
“Sgt. Quatro is an outstanding soldier and a well-disciplined [non-commissioned officer],” said Bode, a native of Buffalo, N.Y. “It’s great to be able to watch how well [Iraqi policemen] respond to his training, and you can see how well they implement what he trains when they conduct their range.”
Installing, maintaining and troubleshooting signal support systems and terminal devices are primary tasks for all U.S. Army signal support soldiers.
Spc. Angel West, a signal support specialist assigned to Company B, 4th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 4th Advise and Assist Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, recently earned recognition as “Long Knife Strong” Soldier of the Week for doing an outstanding job accomplishing these tasks.
“West is a great soldier. She comes to work every day and gives it her all, no matter what the task,” said Staff Sgt. Nick Kraus, non-commissioned officer responsible for the Brigade Signal Support Help Desk, and West’s supervisor.
“As signal soldiers, we assist the brigade in a major way,” said Kraus, a native of Cincinnati. “By ensuring automation and technical components are sustained and running properly, we enable the brigade to communicate efficiently throughout our deployment here.”
As a communications subject matter expert, West demonstrates her signal support proficiency daily by imaging, troubleshooting and installing computers and printers for her fellow 4th AAB soldiers at the help desk.
Prior to working at the help desk, West assisted in resolving communication and equipment issues while serving as one of the only signal support specialists at a remote installation near Sinjar, Iraq.
“It feels really good for my leadership to recognize me for all the hard work I’ve put in these past couple of months,” said West, a native of Liberty, Ky.
Leaving her children – D.J., Harley and Bryan – with family in Kentucky, West deployed to Iraq last fall in support of Operation New Dawn.
Since deploying with the brigade to U.S. Division – North, West traveled all across northern Iraq to multiple installations, assisting her fellow troopers by troubleshooting their communications equipment.
When West is not at the help desk assisting soldiers or conducting physical training at the gym, you can usually find her behind a computer webcam or writing home to her family.
“I wish I could be there with my family back in the states, but this is my mission here,” said West. “While I’m here, I just want to focus on being the best at what I do, because being a signal support specialist and maintaining [communication] operations is a vital part of the mission.”
Twenty-year-old Army Spc. Eric Brubaker doesn’t want to hear the word hero used in conjunction with his name, he doesn’t want to feel a pat on his back or a hand shake followed by the words “good job;” truth be told Brubaker probably doesn’t want to see his name in print either.
However, when the tanker from the 2nd Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division saved the life of a civilian driver Sept. 20 on Fort Hood, Texas all these accolades would become synonymous with the mere mention of his name.
“I just found out today that everyone knew, I wanted it to stay quiet,” said the former ranch-hand and Cheyenne, Wyo. native.
“I don’t like being in the spotlight, this isn’t something I felt should have been talked about and traveled all over post, something like this is part of our duty, we are trained to react,” Brubaker added.
The morning of the 20th started out just as many days do for Brubaker, as he was attending his sixth Combat Life Saver Course (Brubaker’s second refresher course this year) to brush up on his critical soldiering skills readying himself for another deployment sometime within the next year.
“I was pulling out of the parking lot leaving CLS and witnessed a vehicle that appeared out of control cross the median and strike another car,” said Brubaker. “Being on Fort Hood with these crazy drivers you see accidents every day, but when her SUV came across the median and hit the driver in front of me, I saw the expression on her face, I knew she was [having a seizure].”
Approaching the door Brubaker finds the female occupant of the SUV non-responsive with visible bleeding, and a noticeable wheezing and gurgling in her breathing, which Brubaker’s CLS certification told him was an obstructed airway.
“I knew from all my training and deployments that I had to help her get air, I had to open her airway back up. I ran to the trunk of my car and grabbed my IFAK (Improved First Aid Kit) and inserted my NPA (Nasopharyngeal Airway) into her.”
The NPA is a tube that is designed to be inserted into the nasal passageway to secure an open airway, and without it Brubaker knew the driver could have died.
“There were individuals checking under the car for leaking fluids keeping me informed of my surroundings, because the last thing I wanted to do was move her not knowing the extent of her injuries,” Brubaker said.
Keeping the driver stabilized for what seemed like a few seconds to Brubaker, until emergency medical personnel arrived on the scene and relieved him. The soldier now doted as a hero gives all praise to his Army training.
“This soldiers action is a testament to all of the soldiers in this battalion, I am very proud of not just this Soldier, but all of them,” said 2-5 Cav. Command Sgt. Maj. Ricky Linton, who hails from Apalachicola, Fla. “We train hard here, and this just proves how much they are buying into what the command is all about and that is an expectation of excellence.”
Lots of talk has circulated about what the commendation will be for Brubaker. Many have thrown around the words “Soldier’s Medal” since the incident, which is the highest peace time award a soldier can receive for their actions.
All of this is dismissed with a respectable smile and a shake of the head from a young man who enjoys blending in a formation rather than standing out in front of one.
Brubaker is always where he needs to be, doing what he needs to do, he is someone that the younger guys look to, and he is always putting everyone at ease when training goes a little long, or if his unit reports early for a 4 a.m. road march. He is the embodiment of a team player, said Brubaker’s first line supervisor, Spc. Randy Meeks, who is from Blooming Grove, Texas.
The unit and his peers are not surprised by the heroics Brubaker displayed that afternoon or that it was coincidence that he was there at the scene.
“Perfect example! Spc. Brubaker has horrible knees, just terrible and they will get him down from time to time, but rather than take a knee and go on profile he would just gut it out every day,” said Meeks. “Four miles, six miles, no matter still there in formation keeping pace, it finally got to the point that we had to escort him to the doc, make him take a profile, and if that wasn’t enough we had to guard him and our formation every morning just to keep him from sneaking in there for PT (physical training). He doesn’t quit, Spc. Brubaker doesn’t know how, that’s why we are not surprised in the least about any of this,” said Meeks.
“This soldier deserves the accolades, deserves the recognition, we are talking about a combat veteran that is used to reacting to tragedy, and that’s just what he did that day he saw something terrible and where most people would have set back and not known what to do, he knew how to react and did,” said Linton.
“He doesn’t realize what he has done, and that’s what you have got to love about this soldier,” he added. “Brubaker is what we should all want to be and that is a good soldier. He’s quiet, he does what he has to do, and he shines when he needs to shine.”
“This all comes down to training,” Brubaker says. “I found myself in a situation and directly applied what I have been taught during my career to save a life. It’s something we all can do; it is like riding a bike. When that switch flips and you see firsthand the benefits of your Army training, the rest is just muscle memory.”
Story by Spc. Phillip Adam Turner