25th DIVARTY certifies with FIST

| February 14, 2017 | 0 Comments
Team members certify with FIST. (Photo by 1st Lt. James Dyer, 25th Division Artillery, 25th Infantry Division)

Team members certify with FIST. (Photo by 1st Lt. James Dyer, 25th Division Artillery, 25th Infantry Division)

Story and photos by
1st Lt. James Dyer
25th Division Artillery
25th Infantry Division

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — The 25th Division Artillery, or 25th DIVARTY, kicked off 2017 by conducting a division-wide fire support team, or FIST certification, from Jan. 9 to 20.

The event was held to certify company FIST teams in conjunction with a best FIST competition to keep things competitive.

The teams were tested in a variety of events that involved a comprehensive written exam, an 8-mile ruck march, a stress shoot, dismounted land navigation, equipment operation, crater analysis, observation post (OP) occupation and a call for fire.

Capt. Anthony Mamunes, from G3 Fire and the officer in charge for the FIST certification, said, “FIST certification is an excellent event to validate and certify division FISTERs to enable the division to provide accurate and lethal fires across the Pacific.”

The ruck march was 8 miles long across difficult terrain. The ruck went from flat and uneven terrain to steep and rolling hills with occasional breaks of even terrain. The march started at DIVARTY headquarters and ended at the South Range’s Military Operations in Urban Terrain, or MOUT site, where teams went straight into a stress shoot with their M4/M16. The stress shoot exposed the teams to the difficulties of trying to accurately engage targets while fatigued and allowed the Soldiers to shoot from various positions.

Team members certify with FIST. (Photo by 1st Lt. James Dyer, 25th Division Artillery, 25th Infantry Division)

Team members certify with FIST. (Photo by 1st Lt. James Dyer, 25th Division Artillery, 25th Infantry Division)

The teams were spread out across South Range conducting land navigation, OP occupation and crater analysis. Additionally, a FIST equipment station tested assembly and use of various communication platforms, as well as its target acquisition equipment known as the Lightweight Laser Designator Range-finder (LLDR).

While visiting the training site, Brig. Gen. Michael, deputy commanding general, operations, 25th ID, was briefed on the standards for certification and DIVARTY plans for future FIST certifications. Michael and Col. Matthew Stader, commander, 25th DIVARTY, then went out to shadow a FIST team as the team went out to occupy an OP. They experienced firsthand what went into selecting the OP and how the terrain and recon plays a role when selecting and moving into an OP.

The FIST mission was to move from a designated point to a suitable OP that offered cover and concealment while allowing the FIST to observe and call for fire on high value targets, or HVTs, while staying completely hidden from the enemy watching from a village below. The FIST required line of site while still being positioned so that the team mitigated its chances of accidental harm if actual artillery had been called in.

This is the first division-wide FIST certification that involved all 22 company FISTs in the division. The certification gave the Soldiers an opportunity to test their individual and team abilities against their peers, while allowing them to share best practices with each other and learn trade/craft from each other and their graders.

“I’d rather be out here exercising what I was trained on than back at the battery. It is nice to be able to test our skills,” said Pfc. Heinrich Pilligian from B Battery, 3rd Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 25th DIVARTY, who supported A Company, 2nd Bn., 27 Infantry Regt.

• FIST Winners

Congratulations to this year’s winning teams.

  • 2nd Bn., 11th FA Regt. with A Co., 1st Bn., 21st FIST.
  • Top FISTER, Sgt. Landon Goodwin in 2nd Bn., 11th FA with A Co., 1st Bn., 21st FIST.

Tags: , , , , ,

Category: Exercises, News, Training

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *