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By SMDC/ARSTRAT Public Affairs Office, SMDC/ARSTRAT
/ Published October 22, 2018
OSAN AIR BASE, South Korea - Sgt. 1st Class Robert Billingsley, systems evaluator, 1st Space Battalion systems evaluator (standing, second from left) out briefs the Joint Tactical Ground Station-Korea detachment on their performance Sept. 16, 2018, following their Operational Readiness Evaluation. (U.S. Army photo by Carrie David Campbell)
1st Space Company, Detachment C, Joint Tactical Ground Station, Osan Air Base, South Korea, is one of four JTAGS units worldwide that provides early missile warning for the United States and its allies, proved their mission readiness with 99 percent proficiency during their recent Operational Readiness Evaluation.
According to Tom Jacobs, battalion standardization officer with 1st Space Battalion, the ORE, which was completed Sept. 16, is one of two external evaluations JTAGS detachments undergo each year and is planned, coordinated and executed by the 1st Space Battalion.
“We conduct OREs annually in U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command for each mission area. It is the commander’s check on operational proficiency across the organization,” Jacobs said. “They are extremely important to ensure our units are ready to perform their directed, strategic mission.
“The scenario presented to the unit was both complex and dynamic using current real world situations to drive the evaluation,” Jacobs said. “OREs are designed to be challenging while enabling the unit to demonstrate proficiency in accomplishing their direct mission. Success depends on individual and collective tasks being performed to standard.”
According to Sgt. 1st Class Kacee Love, detachment operations sergeant, the successful ORE validated the ability of the unit to perform its mission.
“The past year has been making sure all of our operators were certified at multiple levels, and making sure everyone understands not just what their job is within the shelter, but what the person to the left or right is also responsible for and how their mission actually impacts the higher echelon units around the world – those tier-one sites and those who have a role in missile warning,” Love said.
Commander, Capt. Adam Mancini, said his Soldiers did an outstanding job.
“I took command in June 2018, and we’ve been preparing and talking about the ORE since then,” Mancini said. “It’s been months and months leading up to this weeklong event. It’s my first time doing an ORE and I didn’t know what to expect. We did very well and I’m very proud of my soldiers.”
Many of the soldiers receive a one-year assignment to the unit, however, Jacobs said the turnover, particularly in leadership, did not affect their preparedness.
“Despite the turnover in leadership from last year, the detachment was able to maintain a very high level of proficiency, as demonstrated through the evaluation,” Jacobs said. “They displayed a high level of motivation and morale, and they demonstrated a high level of training proficiency.”
Love said the unit is unique and special and focuses on the soldier’s development.
“This detachment is unlike any other unit I’ve ever been in. Our soldiers, our NCOs and our officers are all over here, 20 some odd people, by ourselves. This is more like a family than any place I’ve ever been,” Love said. “We run our training program a little differently. We focus on the SMDC mission, but we also focus on the soldiers and their careers over a long period of time. We certify them to one step above their position because that grants flexibility to our unit and ensures that our soldiers are able to make it to schools and are able to participate in career enhancement opportunities.”
Mancini said the evaluation revealed a few areas for the detachment to work on, but overall, he was pleased.
“We are a very small detachment, and they do their job, their real world mission, a strategic mission, every day,” Mancini said. “These are very young soldiers, but they take it very seriously. I’ve very proud of who they are, and I’m fortunate for being in command of such a great group of soldiers.”