Battalion Commander's Corner
Dear Wolfpack Family:
Spring is here and along with it has come the busy schedule that we were all anticipating. Everyone is working very hard right now to keep up with all of the requirements and as usual the Battalion is doing great!
Just as we expected, 1998 came in with a bang and the proverbial train has been moving very quickly ever since. In addition to conducting three very successful CALFEXs/AirAssaults with 2-325 in early January, we also prepared for and assumed mission on the 15th. Late January/early February saw the Wolfpack in the field for JTFEX Purple Dragon. This was right after the Superbowl (Which I still can’t believe the Steelers didn’t win)! Anyway, Purple Dragon went very well due to a lot of hard work on everyone’s part... Thanks. Mid February had the Staff and some of the company’s folks hard at work in the Corps SIM Center fighting enemy icons as a part of CPX II in preparation for the upcoming Division Warfighter. We also had a great FRG Ice Skating Party and a Battalion Hail and Farewell which nearly 100 members of the Wolfpack attended. Special thanks to all who helped organize those great functions. In late February/early March we got a chance to do what we like the most… shoot gunnery! Although the weather tried to delay us (as usual!) we qualified a lot of crews and had a great time. Additionally, Bravo Company deployed to JRTC as a part of Task Force Corsair (2-82). They are currently redeploying and had a superb rotation.
These past two months have also been very emotional. First, we said farewell to MG and Mrs. Ward. Both Joyce and MG Ward were staunch supporters of the Aviation Brigade and the Wolfpack and their leadership and friendship will be sorely missed. We wish them well in their new assignment. Next we welcomed COL(P) and Mrs. LaCoste as the new ADC-S. Both Col(P) LaCoste and Mary are very familiar with Fort Bragg, this is their 5th tour here, and COL(P) LaCoste is a former Commander of the Aviation Brigade. We warmly welcome them and look forward to our future time together in the 82d. Finally, we all shared the emotional heartache associated with learning that SPC Hayes had been in a terrible vehicle accident. As we all worked through the first few days after the accident, it was wonderful to see how the Battalion pulled together to support SPC Hayes and his mother in their time of need. A very special thank you to everyone who helped out during this difficult time. SPC Hayes is now recovering at Tampa Medical Center, Tampa, Florida. He still has a long road ahead so Vicky and I ask that you keep him in your thoughts and prayers.
The next few months will continue to be busy. Our next major Battalion social function is our annual Easter Party on 29 March. Everyone is invited! In April we have the AAAA Convention in Charlotte (Permissive TDY is Authorized), the Division WFX, a Battalion Hail and Farewell on 24 April, and the Aviation Brigade Spring Formal on 30 April. In May we have Post Clean up, All-American Week, an FRG Softball Tournament, and Memorial Day Weekend before we assume mission again on 29 May. June will begin with another Battalion Hail and Farewell on the 5th and an FRG Fun Day at Fantasy Lake on the 6th. Later in the month we’ll have the FORSCOM-DES ARMS Inspection and then in either late June or early July our Annual Aerial Gunnery. The summer will conclude with a deployment back to El Centro, California, for another JTF-6 mission, more great flying and hopefully another gunnery.
As you can see, we will continue to stay busy here in the 82d. As we all work together to get through the busy times, please remember that your efforts are very much appreciated, and they are paying off! The Wolfpack is doing great in all areas thanks to everyone; both military members and their spouses, pulling together to make it through these busy times. Thanks again and keep up the good work.
David and Vicky Shaffer