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Vol. 25, No. 4
56th Field Artillery Command
June 1987

New 'Hummers' tune up command
by Barbara Blockburn
Pershing Cable Staff Writer

Presen11ng the HMMWV - Pershing'• "ugly duckling" addition to Its combat ready fleet. t....,. -, .._. • -......,

Computer 'a-TACCS' 56th
Pfc. Cary Engelhard,, • SIDPERS clerk in 2nd Bm,1ion, 9th Field Artillery's S-1 office, also attended the
T ACCS class. "This was my firsc computer class, but I
really liked it", he said. • Every ,imc I had • queStion ,he
instructors 11.'0uJd be there with an answer. They were
very helpful."

by Barbara Blackburn
Pershing Cab!• Scaff Writer
Comba, ready computers art invading offic« through·
out 56th Field Artillery Comm,nd. But don't shoo, ai
them, they're not the enemy.
The computer,, called Tactical Army Combat Service
Support Computer (TACCS), art part of a Defense De•
parnnent f lan which has allowed for the production and
fielding o 8,569 of the systems Army-wide during the
next several years, according to the U.S. Army Inform•·
,ion Engineering Command (ISEC).
1st Lt. John K. Arnold, Information Management Officer for rhe command, is in charge of the fielding of the
new systems. A t0tal of 51 of the computtrs will be re·
ccivcd at Pershing. 56th Command is the third site in

"The TACCS is a good computer. It's big, but you can
take it to the field mytjme. They made it so you can just
pack it up and take it with you. It's a real combat-ready
According to Lt. Col. John Horn, product manager for
ISEC, the computers are extremely reliable even in "high
dust tactical environmentS• while opcnting under severe
C'Xtremes of heat ,nd humidity. He added that muIts of
Ul ex,ended operational test conducted at Fon Gordon
also demonstrated the equipment's performance capability in harsh bmlefield environment.s.

Euro,pe to receive t he computers.
He said thac the computtrs will cut down on courier

runs and processing time for Standard Installation/Division Personnel System (SIDPERS) transactions. SIDPERS
is a personnel data base with information on all of the sol·
diers in the Army.
According to Arnold, 55th Support Battalion will re·
ceive about 19 of ,he TACCS scheduled for ,he com•
Soldiers from the command have already begun taking
classes which will introduce them 10 the new system.
Sp~ Jolly Blackbum of the command's G-1, Enlisted
Management Office recently attended a five-day TACCS
class. "I have a computer at home, •nd have used one for
years, but! still found the classes helpful", he <aid. "I was
also impressed with the computers themselves. They will

be a definite advanuge during wartime and in the field
cnvir·onmcnt ...

Each TACCS system has a visual display unit, key·
board, master logic block and printer. An expanded version provides an additional workstation.
Hom noted that each computer's components are
transportable in protective cases each of which can be carrie,d by nvo soldiers.

Maybe it's not faster than • speeding bullet. Maybe it's
not more powerful than locomotive. Maybe it c• n't leap tall
buildings in a single bound, but 56, h Comm•nd', new
HMMWV's can keep Pershin~ combat ready.
A HMMWV is a High Mob,liry, Multi-purpose Wheeled
Vehicle and just because it didn't come from Krypton
doesn't mean it can't roll with ,he punches.
According 10 the USAREUR Material Fielding Plan, the
new vehicle is intended for use under e-xtremc or unusual
conditions of climate, weacher, terrain and miliury service,
,...-hich includes air transponation and tae1ica1 air drop using
the Low Altitude Parachute Extraction System (LAPES).
It is designed to be used in transporting personnel or
cargo or in providing for special tasks such as "' armament
carrier, reconnaissance vehicle, etc.
1st Lt. Todd B>rstow, the Force Modernization O fficer
in charge of fielding the new additions 10 56th Command's
fleet of vehicle,, believes the HMMWV's wiDI keep the
command combat ready.
"The HMMWV is new, JO it will need less ma.inten~nce
than some of the older vehicles it is replacing. It can go faster, and farther than the jeep and 2' '2-,on ,nicks."
Barstow said that the vehicles are already fielded in CONUS and the reports they've been getting back from commanders and users are that it is performing wilh excellence.
Teaching classes in the command about the support of
the HMMWV are representatives from Tank Automotive
Command ,nd Army Material Command.
Sp4 Michael Phim, a mechanic from Bravo battery, 55th
Support Battalion, is a member of ,he He say, he
likes the training and is learning a lot. "But the real test of
the vehicle will be once we stan using them. Right now
they're new, so they haven't been tried. But it will help the
command be more combat ready becauit it wil l be replacing the old vehicl«, and there won't be as many vehicles
needing to be worked on.•
CWO 3 Alfred Uucreb, from th e Material Section of
55th Support, said the classes are teaching the characteristics of the HMMWV's, how ,he engine looks, hov.· i, can
be taken •pan, etc. Soldiers from privates fim class ,o war·
rant officus are jn the class learning ,o take care of ,he vc•
As pan of a plan to modernize the equ_ipment in rhe
Command, select units within the 56th have alr,eadv begun
receiving the new HMMWV's, Twelve of the veh:cles are
expected in April, md another 236 are scheduled to arrive
in June, accordin~ to Barstow.
The HMMWV s arc just a ,mall pan of the overall plan,
which deab with the management of new oquipmcnt and
the rum in of old systems. The Army is making •off-,h•·
shelf" purchases of technical equipment.
"The plan", says Barstow, "deals with the purchase of
every type or piece of e9.uipmen1 you can think of from vehicl«, radios, and NBC equipment to brand new heaters
for maintenance bays. In the next few yc:ars, the comm~nd
will sec new NBC masks, rifles," pistols and new signal
People in and around the Command c;m expect to see the
short, snub-nosed, wide-bodied HMMWV's on a daily ba·
But don't be deceived by their unassuming looks. After·
all, they're made of steel, and everyth ing we've heard about
them leads us to believe they're going to be really · super".

The TACCS equipment provides for ir,nsmission and
receipt of data with other battlefield computers via commercial or tactical telephone lines and over multi-channel
and FM r,dio means, Horn said. Information also can be
stored on floppy disks for transfer to other computers.


These computers may not be able to shom weapons or
Cta\VJ under barbed wire~ but they .are ready for combat.

~ I n g In the fteld• • ~ •• , •• , P11119S 4-6

They c,n hold ,heir own and perform their mission no
matter what the conditions may be.


Inside the Cable



• ,· •••• ·•••• page&

Pttrshlng Cable



Bullseye: experts shoot six for six
Many attributed the successes in Florida to the training
the Battery received in Germany. ·Toe tr.lining was quite

by Ron McKinney
2nd Bn., 9th F.A. Reporter

involved,• said Sp-4 Chris Jones, an Integrated Launch Assembly operator. 'It was procedure after procedure of the
same thing to be sure we had it down for Florida. But, you

Six for six.
On :any kind of range, that's shooting "'expen", and in
this cue the firing range wu at Cape Canaveral, Florida
,nd the rounds were Pershing II missiles.
For the second time in less than two years, Bravo Bat·
tery, 2n,d Battalion, 9th Field Artillery wu selected to deploy soldiers and missile, back to the United Smes for
multiple firings.
According to 1st Lt. Alex Tetrault, Bravo Battery Plat0on Leader, the fim few days in Florida were spent inspecting the missile components 10 ensure they survived the
trip without damage, and for the soldiers to test their

IHrn a lot more firing a live round. It improves: your com-

bat readiness."
It was also an exciting experience for those who had the
opportunity to watch the six missiles lift off from their
erector launchers a.nd disappear down-range.
"I was ecstatic about coming to Florida,• Sp4 Scott
Lane, a Pershing missile crewmember. "h gav< me the op·
portunity 10 see the missile system work and it was an opportunity to see that we "'Al'Cren't working with an obsolete
system. We proved that Pershing II and Bravo Battery are
combat ready.•
Neely, a fellow crcwmcmber agreed. "Watching the wa~·
the missile works is fun. At any given second, you understand everything that's going on.'
'With a Pershing II missile, you have to know everyone
else's job. With the Ground Integrated Electronic Unit, I

.. count" procedures. Then the equipment was ·rurncd over

to Proieet Control, and ,hey tested us for ttlcmmy and
beacon, mining countdowns and arming the self-destruct
mechanism," Tetrault said.

SSgt. Clyde Brown, of 2nd Platoon was one of four soldiers who participated in rhc most rtunt firings and Bravo
Bauc.,·'s first trip to the Cape in November, 1985.
"'The last trip/' Brown said, '"we didn't take all of our
own equipment, and we fired only one missile.· Several
other bancrics have returned to the States either to fire missiles alreadv in the States or to fire their own missiles,
which they. brought back from Germany.
Br2vo Battery, however, became the fim bancry to successfully launch six of their own Pershing II missiles during
an exercise held at Cape Canaveral. The Bravo Battery soldiers were quite familiar with ,he ones they shot, since they
had bcc-n training with the very same missiles in Gcnn.tny
lei, than a month before the shoot.
Brov.•n explained that getting ready for the shoot was

level the erector Jaunc.h er. Once it's ' cued\ you run as fast
a., you can the 400 feet of the cable ... hit the ground

. . . turn the key.•
At Florida, the crews evacuated the missile area to a
bunker where they could ob,erve the missile's flight on the
television monit0rs.
..The missile erecsed: Neely explained. ""Five, six sec·

made more difficult by the rain and mow in Gemuny prior

to the departure of the Battery.
"There aren't many units that can go 10 the field and perform in below-zero weather, then go to Florida ancf do it
better ,..i,h the same equipment." said Sp4 Joel Neely, a
Pershing missile crcwmcmber.

A Perehlng II mlnlle llfta skyward during I recent
fleld exercise In Weit Germeny. Perehlng unite ere of.
ten tasked to retum to the U.S. for tnt firing and
tr1lnlng. 1,_., '""" ,_,

onds later, it lifted off the pad. h was awesome!"
"If you work around this equipment all the time, you
wonder 'Docs this stuff really work?' To watch it fly - the
same missi.le you've been working on for rwo years - is an
unbelievable experience.•
Neely can still picture the missile Lifting a.way with a
roar. His S1ar·struck ga.z.c follows his rising hand, as it simulates the flight of the missile. His hand stops when hi, arm
iJ fully extended above him. The clouds ,n his eyes disappear, his memory of his Pershing II missile soaring away
quickly fades.
He smiles.

Senior NCOs refresh skills

Leaders tackle combat survival course
by Robert Rubinosky
1st Bn., 9th F.A. Reporter
Enemy pattols >re in the area. The lut of the food and
water ran out yesterday. Your men arc cold, tired and
edgy. But you're the senior man and you have 10 lead your
men back for a rendezvous tonight with a helicopter.
It look, so close on the map, but it's miles a.,.ay through
treacherous terrain.
This is the son of combat readiness ch2llenge senior non...
commissioned officers, E·7's and E·S's, arc learning co
overcome in the S6th Command Senior NCO Confidence
The pilot class gr.aduated recently after an imensc three
week course which focused on field environment skills.
SFC James J. Kalinowski, chid of Special Operations for
the S6th Command NCO Academy, said, 'We're trying to
teach or refresh senior NCO's skills that they need to
know. The course brings back ,he nucleus of the senior
NCO corps in the command here.•
The <ourse is designed to train twelve studcnu per cycle
and is !broken down into three phases.
To begin the course the Students ore taken 10 Strass field
site, about IS miles from Neu-Ulm, and given a GP medium tent that will be their home for the duration of the

Kalinowski said that the program of instruction (POI) is
based on the Special Forces School at Bad Toi,.
"CSM Jackson (command sergeant major, 56th FA
CMD) and CSM Harris (commandant, S6th FA CMD
NCO Academy) •lso gave me their advice on what type of

training they wanted to sec", he said.

Training for this first elm began without delay. At 4:30
a.m. the NCO's prepartd their livinR areas for inspection
and dressed for physical training. The P.T. uniform BDU's and combat boots.
Depending on ,he schedule, they either did normal P .T.,
rifle P.T., log drills, or a four to five mile morch with a
30-pound rucksack.
Following P.T., they were given time to shave and prepare a breakfast of MRE's before starting tbe day's program of instruction.
In the first week, a broad range of classes wu taught on
how to use your environment 10 your best advantage.
Crude, bu, effective, tools and weapons such as hatchets
and slings were constructed of sticks and stones. Using
these improvised tools, they built traps for capruring small
Land navigation was one of the first topics covered. Both
the students and instructors agreed that it needed to be extended a day or two. "It's no, the fact that they were never
taught, but if you don't use a skill, you lose it,• Kalinowski
SFC Martin Enterline, operations scrgnnt, -4th Batta.lion,
9th Field Artillery said, "We normally navigate with a truck
and a map. Actually getting down on the ground and going
through trees and over hills to locate a point wu rough."
The training also included air·mobilc operacions, drop
zone procedures, patrolling, defensive operations, claymore
mines, range cards, military mountaincuing and rapclling.
Instruction wa.s also givcm on The Anny Maintenance

Management System (TAMMS), Prescribed Load List
(PLL) procedures and vehicle maintcncnce by the co m-

mand's Command Maintenance Readiness Inspection
(CMRI) team.
The second phase of training was all hands-on application.s of the first week's instruction. "It's all on ~
basis. We'll retest them until they pass," Kalinowski said.
'We're not out there to make anyone look bad. We're out
there to train them.•
The second phase concludes with a three-day field training extrcisc and two days of survival training.

The survival course was limited for the dilot course be·
cause a fire permit had not been approve yet. But Kalinowski plans to make the course as realistic as possible next
"We're going 10 bring out some dead chickens and r,w
beef,· he said. "They' ll prepare and cook the chicken.
They'll also smoke their own beef overnight for beef jerky
the followinJ day.
'The survival course wiU be lengthened to add an escape
' and evasion course of 15 kilometers. If they gee caught they
will be taken to a mock prison camp.•
The last phase is comprised of a week of small arms
weapons training worth college crcdiu through Big Bend
Community College.
The senior student in the course was 1st Sgt. Gary M.
Sutton of Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 56th
F.A. Cmd. "I found the course very demanding. The cadre
has done an outstanding job in setting up and establishing
rhe course,,. he said.
Accordjng to Sutton, because this was the first class of
this type in the command, there wcrt several things discov·
ercd h.a.d to be adjusted. ·sut the cou rse is good nO'O.'
•nd it's going to get better,• he said.