Lucky to be comfortably doing their job inside air-conditioned trailers, signal Soldiers last week set up communication equipment to support training held in the hot, dry Mojave Desert.
Pfc. Zachary Hunsberger and Pvt. Zachary Price are assigned to 2nd Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. Both work as signal support systems specialists and are preparing to go on their first deployment.
The unitâ€™s home base is Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., but Price and Hunsberger recently mobilized to the National Training Center with the 4th SBCT to prepare for deployment this fall.
â€œIâ€™m excited to go support the unitâ€™s mission to the best of my abilities,â€ said Hunsberger, a native of Allentown, Pa.
â€œI have been setting up antennas, which will allow further range communication,â€ said Price, a native of Hudson, Mich. â€œIâ€™m just ready to do the training and get prepped for deployment.â€
As the Soldiers sat in the trailers synching their communications equipment, it may have looked as if they were trying to avoid the blowing whirls of sand across the area. But they were busy doing their prescribed tasks in support of their unitâ€™s training mission here.
Communication keeps all the moving parts of the training mission linked, as units will be spread throughout several operating bases in the desert. For new Soldiers, such as Hunsberger and Price, itâ€™s important that they are as proficient as possible in order to keep up with the high operating tempo at NTC and, most importantly, while deployed.
Both Soldiers have personal goals they plan to accomplish during their time downrange, to include saving more money.Â Price plans on helping his little brother and Hunsberger plans on paying off his debts.
â€œI plan on buying my brother a car for his birthday when he turns 16,â€ Price said. â€œHe participates in a lot of sports, so I want him to have his own transportation.â€
Although both Soldiers have personal goals they want to achieve, they donâ€™t forget that their unitâ€™s mission is their priority when downrange.