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Historical THAAD Battery in Guam Transfers Authority to its Sister Unit

Story by 1st Class Karry James, NCOIC, 94th AAMDC Public Affairs

FTO missile launch

Andersen Air Force Base, Guam Task Force Talon marks another historical milestone as its Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) battery completes its mission and  transfers authority to one of its sister THAAD units already on the ground in Guam, Apr. 1.

The outgoing battery, Alpha, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, has been providing tactical ballistic missile defense of the island of Guam against any potential threats for the last year. They will be heading back home to family and friends at Fort Bliss, TX after the transfer.

“A-4 has set the conditions for not only the continued success of this mission, but also for future successful deployments of THAAD to other areas of the world,” said Lt. Col. Clyde Cochrane, commander, Task Force Talon. “The lessons learned here will enable future Air Defenders to deploy, emplace and accomplish their mission faster and better.”

The “Transfer of Authority” ceremony is a military tradition that the two units conduct as a symbol that signifies the end of A-4’s mission by the casing of its guidon and the start of A-2’s assumption of responsibility for the defense of Guam by the unfurling of its guidon.

                                      

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New Signal Soldiers, Technology to Be Tested During Deployment to Guam

Story by 2nd Lt. Brian Severson, communications officer in charge, 307th ESB

ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam – Soldiers from Alpha and Charlie Companies, 307th Expeditionary Signal Battalion (ESB), are deployed to Guam to conduct a relief in place of Soldiers from Bravo Company, 307th ESB. 

B Co Soldiers from the 307th ESB have provided vital signal support to Task Force Talon for the past year. A Co and C Co Soldiers from the 307th will continue to support the Task Force for the next 6 months. Task Force Talon is the first deployment of the Army’s new Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system. 307th ESB Soldiers provide communications support to the THAAD battery and its high-tech systems.

307th Soldiers on this mission will have the opportunity to field the 307th’s new equipment which recently returned from reset operations. Upgrades to the equipment allow the 307th to better perform its mission of expeditionary signal support. This will be the first real world mission in the Pacific where this new upgraded equipment will be utilized. The experience the Soldiers gain on this mission will help their team and the rest of the 307th ESB perform future missions. 

When asked about the opportunity to field the new signal equipment, Spc. Rebekah Jones-Lovett, a transmission system operator-maintainer from A Co, stated, “[This] is a great system that gives us more redundancy. It was difficult to set up because we were not familiar with the fiber link we were using, but once we configured everything correctly, it turned out to be a simple painless process.”

As part of this mission, Soldiers from all three of 307th ESB’s line companies have the unique opportunity to work together on a real world mission.  Soldiers from A Co and B Co are stationed at Helemano Military Reservation in Hawaii where they typically do not have the opportunity to interact with C Co Soldiers who are stationed at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska. B Co Soldiers who have been in Guam for six to twelve months are ensuring A Co and C Co Soldiers are ready to assume their mission for the next year.

“This mission is a great opportunity to meet people from within our Battalion since we are located on two different posts., Sgt. Ulysses Morgan, a senior transmission system operator-maintainer from C Co, said. “It was great to see how quickly everyone just clicked as a team out here. 

Morgan also added, “In the future, it would be great to have more Soldiers from Charlie Company come out here and interact with other Soldiers from the 307th companies in Hawaii.”

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