Kentucky MEDEVAC trains with Indiana Guardsmen

Story by Sgt. Scott Raymond, Kentucky National Guard Public Affairs

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1st Lt. Jessica Tharp of Det 1 Charlie Co. 2/238th MEDEVAC Unit prepares to throw a training grenade at Camp Atterbury Joint Maneuver Training Center, April 15, 2012. Members of the unit received instruction in basic warrior tasks as part of their annual training. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Matthew Phelps, 2/238th MEDEVAC/Released)

GRISSOM AIR RESERVE BASE, Indiana – For members of Detachment 1, Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 238th Medical Evacuation Unit, training in Indiana is not just a road trip, it’s a journey closer to their “flag pole”.  The company headquarters is located in Indiana.  Detachments of the unit from both the Kentucky and Indiana National Guards converged on Camp Atterbury Joint Maneuver Training Center in April to begin their annual training.

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The 2/238th MEDEVAC is scheduled to deploy next year to Southwest Asia and members of the units said it only made sense to train together.

“We are a platoon sized MEDEVAC element and we are attached to C Co 2/238th out of Shelbyville, Indiana,” said 1st Lt. Jessica Tharp, a platoon leader with the 2/238th.  “Since we will be deploying with our Indiana brethren, this Annual Training was an opportune time to learn and train their MEDEVAC standard operating procedures and compare differences in their way of conducting training and ours.”

While at Camp Atterbury, the unit conducted simulator training and qualified personnel on the hand grenade range.  The stay was short, however, as the unit moved training to Grissom Air Reserve Base just north of Indianapolis.

Members finished any remaining Army Warrior Task requirements and the unit prepared for flight training.

“Grissom was very accommodating and a great selection to accomplish AWTs and set-up Flight Operations and launch simulated 9-line scenarios,” said Tharp.

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Sgt Mike Powers of Det 1 Charlie Co. 2/238th MEDEVAC Unit checks communications inside a convoy simulation at Camp Atterbury Joint Maneuver Training Center in Indiana, April 15, 2012. The unit travelled to Indiana to conduct their annual training. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Matthew Phelps, 2/238th MEDEVAC/Released)

The air base provided the unit the ability to fly MEDEVAC scenarios based upon their unit’s mission.  Primarily the UH-60 Black Hawks of the 2/238th are used for aero-medical evacuations, but are also capable of other medical related needs including search and rescue operations and transporting patients and medical supplies.

Kentucky Soldiers said the training gave them a feel for their entire command and built a foundation for future cooperation with an out of state chain of command.  They had a positive take away from the training and now what what they should work on before deploying.

“Kentucky brought a lot of experience to the table,” said Tharp.  “We have seasoned crewmembers that collectively work very well together to accomplish the mission.  This annual training was a chance to demonstrate that experience and continue to grow not only as a detachment, but as a company.”

Click here to read the Grissom Air Reserve Base article on this joint training

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