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Westchester Soldiers Return From Elite Deployment

Spc. Hakeem English, a soldier assigned to Headquarters Co., 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, sets up a 60mm mortar while Spc. Elliot Beaumont provides security at Fort Polk, La.,
Spc. Hakeem English, a soldier assigned to Headquarters Co., 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, sets up a 60mm mortar while Spc. Elliot Beaumont provides security at Fort Polk, La., Photo Credit: submitted
New York Army National Guard infantrymen assigned to Co. C, 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry based in New York City assault an objective during live-fire training at Ft. Polk, La.,
New York Army National Guard infantrymen assigned to Co. C, 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry based in New York City assault an objective during live-fire training at Ft. Polk, La., Photo Credit: submitted
Army National Guard Sgt. Geovany Martinez, with Co. C, 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry, watches his field of fire after securing a building during a live-fire exercise at Ft. Polk, La.,
Army National Guard Sgt. Geovany Martinez, with Co. C, 1st Battalion, 69th Infantry, watches his field of fire after securing a building during a live-fire exercise at Ft. Polk, La., Photo Credit: submitted

Several servicemen with the New York Army National Guard’s 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team are returning from an elite deployment to Louisiana for training exercises.

The force-on-force training, which included soldiers from White Plains, Rye, Harrison, Port Chester and Greenburgh, began in mid-July and concluded near the end of the month, according to the New York State Division of Military & Naval Affairs.

More than 5,000 troops from 30 states – including 700 troops from across the Hudson Valley who deployed from Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh on July 12 – participated in the training at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk for most of July.

The training also took place at a time when federal authorities had warned that tensions between local law enforcement and the black community could plunge Louisiana into rioting .

According to the New York Army National Guard, several of the soldiers returning this week after completing the training include these from Wesrchester:

  • Stephen Kim of Harrison
  • Brian Napier of Rye Brook
  • Caleb Dexter of Rye
  • Spc. Orane Jacobs of White Plains
  • Sgt. David Clark of Greenburgh
  • Spc. Craig Neil of White Plains
  • Spc. Melroy Scott of White Plains
  • Sgt. Mitchell Stogel of White Plains
The deployment consisted of 10 days of offensive and defensive missions involving a “real opposing force” that aimed to “challenge all the components of the maneuver brigade, including infantry, artillery and aviation operations; engineering and reconnaissance tasks and others, according to officials.

In addition to infantry units from New York, units from Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Maryland and Utah also participated in the training, according to officials.

According to the New York State Division of Military & Naval Affairs, the deployments returning the troops to their home states is to be completed by Aug. 5.

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