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Old 09-07-2013, 15:58   #1
Dog Pound Zulu
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Special Forces use Long Beach to train parachute jumps


National Guard group parachutes into water as part of training exercise


LONG BEACH -- Parachutes billowed out under a bright September sky, dotting the vista off the coast Friday afternoon.

Not long after, 20 or so soldiers in camouflage uniforms waded ashore from boats, dragging their silks with them as they completed their jumps.

The Mississippi National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group from Jackson spent the midday jumping out of Chinook helicopters as part of "under canopy" training jumps.

They hit the water about 2 miles out into the Mississippi Sound, and were picked up by chase boats and brought to shore.

They were greeted on the beach by family and friends who came out for the exercise, to see their loved ones practice what they usually do on foreign soil and foreign seas.

"The jump went fantastic," said Command Sgt. Major David Savage of Biloxi. "What more could you ask for? A beautiful day like today and soldiers got trained and everyone landed safely.

"We still have a few more jumpers who need to jump, but everything has been going great so far."

About 150 soldiers from the Special Forces Group have been involved in the training, which included jumps Thursday over Gulfport Lake. The trainees plunged from Blackhawk helicopters that hovered about 5 feet above the water giving them the experience of jumping out without benefit of parachutes.

"If an airborne soldier enters a water environment, we want to make sure he knows how to land properly in water, maneuver under the parachute and signal for a rescue boat," a spokesman said.

The Special Forces Group has deployed three times since 9/11 -- twice to Afghanistan and once to Iraq.

Read more here: http://www.sunherald.com/2013/09/06/...#storylink=cpy
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Old 09-07-2013, 16:19   #2
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Now that's a training area......
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Old 09-07-2013, 16:49   #3
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Go Team..
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Old 09-09-2013, 10:25   #4
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It was a great venue, for sure. I got there at 1900, after the last jump. A couple of guys here were involved. The jump was in conjunction with the 2/20 50th Anniversary Reunion. It was an excellent high viz PR op.
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