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Friday, August 19, 2011

Freedom Friday: Through The Eyes Of A Paratrooper

A Paratrooper from the 173rd Jumps

Rapid Trident 20111 involved approximately 1,600 personnel and consisted of multi-national airborne operations, situational training exercise lanes and a field training exercise. In addition to U.S. Army Europe, the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team and Ukraine, participants included: Latvia, Belarus, Moldova, Slovenia, Canada, Poland, Serbia, the UK, Lithuania, Estonia, California and Utah National Guard and U.S. Air Force Europe.

Below is a video of what a paratrooper sees during a parachute jump:

Courtesy: U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs Video: Staff Sgt. Travis Surber

Staff Sgt. Travis Surber, a native of Franklin County, VA and a paratrooper with the 173rd Brigade Combat Team's Battle Company of the 2nd Battalion 503rd Infantry Regiment parachutes out of a C-130 Hercules Transport Aircraft and into the Ukraine sky. This marks the first time the "Sky Soldiers" of the 173rd have jumped in Ukraine and they'll be training and conducting multinational airborne operations, a situational training exercise and a field training exercise here from through 5 Aug. as part of Rapid Trident 2011.

Rapid Trident 2011 is a U.S. Army Europe led, multi-national exercise taking place at the International Peacekeeping and Security Center in Yavoriv, Ukraine. It is designed to promote regional stability and security, strengthen international military partnering and foster trust while improving interoperability between participating nations. Rapid Trident 2011 involves approximately 1,600 personnel. In addition to the U.S. Army Europe and Ukraine, participants include: Latvia, Belarus, Moldova, Slovenia, Canada, Poland, Serbia, the UK, Lithuania, Estonia, California and Utah National Guard and U.S. Air Force Europe. Rapid Trident supports interoperability among Ukraine, the United States, NATO and Partnership for Peace member nations. This exercise will help prepare participants to operate successfully in a joint, multinational, integrated environment with host- nation support from civil and governmental agencies. Rapid Trident is a part of U.S. European Command's Joint Training and Exercise Program, designed to enhance joint combined interoperability with allied and partner nations. The exercise also supports Ukraine's Annual National Program to achieve interoperability with NATO and commitments made in the annual NATO-Ukraine work plan. The 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team is one of the U.S. Army's most highly decorated units having particularly distinguished itself during the Vietnam War and having produced fifteen Congressional Medal of Honor recipients including Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta, the first living recipient of the Medal of Honor since the Vietnam War.

See more online regarding Rapid Trident 2011:

See video from the opening ceremonies. Article on the end of the exercise.
Flickr photoset
US Army Online article
Rapid Trident Homepage

US Army Europe Social Media pages:

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