Vermont National Guard Logo News
Articles
News | Aug. 12, 2021

Regional Command - East conducts mass casualty, active shooter training

By Capt. Mikel Arcovitch KFOR Regional Command East

The 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team’s (MTN) mantra is ‘Ready to Go.’ Training and repetition are paramount to ensuring Soldiers are ready to respond to a variety of situations.

An active shooter is certainly one of those situations.

Regional Command – East conducted an active shooter exercise on Camp Bondsteel on August 12, 2021 to train Soldiers from a variety of sections with a variety of specialties to ensure readiness in the instance of a real-world active shooter. The exercise included active shooters, casualties, response from the joint operations center, civilian emergency responders, medical personnel, security details, and military police responses.

The call to the joint operations center came just after 9:30 a.m. that there was a simulated active shooter.

Capt. Richard Sugai and Staff Sgt. Jeff Bissonnette were on duty at the battle desk in the JOC to receive the initial call. From there arose a flurry of activity. Soldiers taking notes, gathering information, and making necessary calls to communicate to the appropriate sections.

"Gathering necessary information and maintaining open communication with the forces on the ground is critical to allow us to paint a clear picture of the situation," said Capt. Richard Sugai, battle captain, Regional Command - East. "Having a clear picture ensures we are communicating accurately with all concerned parties. Once the initial call came in and we activated our phone tree, the call to shelter in place and lock down came quickly."

Security surrounded the perimeter of the area where the active shooters were located, and emergency vehicles and military police arrived promptly on scene. Once they arrived, military police quickly assessed the situation and breached the building where the active shooters were located.

“Military Police are trained to move directly to the threat, the 29th MP’s quickly analyzed the situation and neutralized the threat in mere minutes of the initial call,” said Capt. Courtney Slaughter, provost marshal, Regional Command – East. “We train to build muscle memory and condition our Soldiers to think quickly in a high stress environment,” said Slaughter.

Once the threat was neutralized, civilian emergency responders began bringing out the wounded to a casualty collection area. During this time military police also interviewed witnesses from the building to gather as much information as they could. Military ambulances arrived on scene to begin bringing casualties to the medical facility here on Camp Bondsteel. Part of this process included evaluating each of the casualties, and identifying the severity of their wounds.

"All patients arrived to role 1E with appropriate Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) interventions, ensuring life-threatening extremity hemorrhage injuries and airway management had been appropriately treated to standard,” said Capt. John Gagnier, physician’s assistant, Task Force MED, Regional Command – East. “During the initial Golden Hour of care, patients were accessed and treated under the Damage Control Resuscitation principles prior to medical evacuation to higher echelons of care," said Gagnier.

Casualties were then medically evacuated (MEDEVAC) to the medical facility. Once arrived, casualties were taken from the ambulances and more thoroughly evaluated by medical personnel. The wounded actors are each assigned a wound or ailment, and the medical professionals work to cypher the injuries each casualty has incurred based on their perceived symptoms.

Wounded personnel are then brought in to the hospital for treatment based on the severity of their wounds. Inside the hospital there is activity everywhere as patients are transported and treated. Mortuary affairs is contacted for those that are deceased upon arrival or if they should succumb to their wounds. The Regional Command – East Chaplain, Maj. Eric Stuepfert, is also available as a resource for the casualties.
A lot of resources. A lot of time planning and executing. Why do this?

“This exercise maximized our coordination and planning with all parties on Camp Bondsteel,” said Col. Brey Hopkins, commander, Regional Command – East. “The support and participation from AAFES, ASG-Balkans, Contractors, CBS fire department, our multi-national partners and the entire RC-East team ensured that we exercised every muscle movement from incident location through transport to higher level medical care,” said Hopkins. “Exercises such as these are instrumental to our success and seamless execution in the event a real world event occurs.”

National Guard News
Volodymyr Zelenskyy, president of Ukraine, U.S. Army Maj. Gen. David Baldwin, adjutant general of the California National Guard, and California Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis watch a demonstration of tactical equipment during a visit to the California Air National Guard’s 129th Rescue Wing at Moffett Air National Guard Base, California, Sept. 2, 2021. The California National Guard and Ukraine have been partners under the Department of Defense National Guard Bureau State Partnership Program since 1993.
National Guard Supports Armed Forces of Ukraine
By Sgt. 1st Class Whitney Hughes, | June 8, 2022
ARLINGTON, Va. – Pinned down by a Russian tank and armed with only a failed anti-tank missile, a Ukrainian soldier recently turned to an unlikely source as the most effective weapon available — his cell phone. On the other...

New York Air National Guard Airmen assigned to the 109th Airlift wing deployed to Greenland in support of Exercise Polar Reach May 11-27. The Airmen worked with the Canadian Royal Air Force and the Minnesota Air National Guard to test the capabilities of its Polar Camp Skiway Team.
NY, Minnesota Airmen Hone Ice Runway Construction Skills
By Tech. Sgt. Jamie Spaulding, | June 8, 2022
STRATTON AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, N.Y. – Ten Airmen assigned to the 109th Airlift Wing deployed to Greenland to support Exercise Polar Reach May 11-27.The exercise, a joint international training event conducted by the 109th...

Members of the 166th Airlift Wing Security Forces Squadron transport a simulated wounded team member during an exercise at the New Castle Air National Guard Base, Del., June 6, 2022. The exercise, a part of Operation Gemini, ensures Airmen are trained and mission ready at all times. (Modifications were made to enhance the subject through color correction, cropping and exposure correction.)
Delaware Air Guard Demonstrates Readiness in Graded Exercise
By Senior Airman Brandan Hollis, | June 8, 2022
NEW CASTLE, Del. – After years of preparation, the 166th Airlift Wing performed the Air Mobility Command graded exercise Operation Gemini to demonstrate its Total Force Readiness and ability to operate overseas.The exercise...

U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Christopher White, 315th Fighter Squadron commander, deployed to Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, prepares an F-35A Lightning II aircraft for takeoff, June 3, 2022. Members of the 158th Fighter Wing are in Europe to support NATO’s ongoing air policing mission to deter aggression and assure allies and partners in the region.
Vermont Guard Pilot Reaches 1,000-hour Milestone a 3rd Time
By Maj. Meghan Smith, | June 8, 2022
SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. – U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Christopher J. White, the 315th Fighter Squadron commander assigned to the 158th Fighter Wing, Vermont Air National Guard, reached his 1,000th flight hour milestone in the F-35A...

Army Gen. Daniel Hokanson, chief, National Guard Bureau, testifies before the Senate Appropriations Committee, Subcommittee on Defense, during the National Guard and Reserve posture hearing in the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill in Washington June 7, 2022.
Continued Investments Make Guard Effective, Chief Says
By Air Force Master Sgt. Erich B. Smith | June 7, 2022
ARLINGTON, Va. – The chief of the National Guard Bureau told senators June 7 that continued investments in the National Guard mean it will be able to effectively support the Joint Force while quickly responding to the needs...