Ranger News

The Ranger News Blog presents current news within the Ranger community; members and the public viewing our website can add comments.

<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
  • 10/24/2015 9:30 AM | Anonymous

    FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, Oct. 23, 2015) - Master Sgt. Joshua L. Wheeler, 39, assigned to Headquarters, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, was killed in action Oct. 22, while deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve. Wheeler died from enemy gunfire while in combat near Hawijah, Iraq.

    He was born Nov. 22, 1975, in Roland, Oklahoma, and graduated in 1994 from Muldrow High School in Muldrow, Oklahoma.

    Wheeler entered the U.S. Army as an infantryman in May 1995, completing his initial entry training at Fort Benning, Ga. His first assignment was with Company C, 1st Battalion, 24th Infantry Regiment, Fort Lewis, Washington.

    In February 1997, he transitioned to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Lewis, Washington, where he served for over seven years as an infantryman, rifle team leader, squad leader, weapons squad leader, and anti-tank section leader, deploying five times in support of combat operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Wheeler was assigned to U.S. Army Special Operations Command in 2004, and deployed 12 times in support of combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Wheeler's military education includes the Basic Airborne Course, Ranger School, Warrior Leader Course, Static Line Jumpmaster, Military Mountaineering Course, Basic and Advanced Demolition Courses, Advanced Urban Combat Training, Advanced Marksmanship Techniques, Close Range Tactical M4 Training, Infantry Advanced Leader's Course, the Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (Level C) Course, Infantry Senior Leader's, Military Free Fall Course, and the Military Free Fall Jumpmaster Course.

    Wheeler's awards and decorations include four Bronze Star Medals with Valor Device, seven Bronze Star Medals, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal with Valor Device, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, seven Army Commendation Medals, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, eight Army Achievement Medals, the Good Conduct Medal (6th Award), the National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with 3 Bronze Service Stars, the Iraq Campaign Medal with 6 Bronze Service Stars, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon (3rd Award), the Army Service Ribbon, the Presidential Unit Citation, the Valorous Unit Award (2nd Award), the Ranger Tab, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Expert Infantryman Badge, the Master Parachutist Badge, and three Overseas Service Bars.  Wheeler was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart.

    He is survived by his wife, four sons, and his grandmother and grandfather.


  • 09/05/2015 12:29 PM | Anonymous

    Legendary WW II Merrill’s Marauders hold 69th annual reunion in Dallas/Ft. Worth
    by Jonnie Melillo Clasen

    An older and smaller group of WW II Merrill’s Marauders, legendary Infantry jungle fighters who volunteered for a secret mission expecting 85 percent casualties, will gather with other China, Burma, India Theater (CBI) veterans for their 69th annual reunion Sept. 3 to 5, 2015, in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area.

    “We are expecting 15 CBI veterans plus their families and friends at this year‘s reunion,” said Bob Passanisi, 91, Merrill’s Marauder spokesperson, historian and former long-time editor of “The Burman News.“ The reunion will be at the Marriott Solana in Westlake.

    “There are less than 50 original Merrill’s Marauders still living in 2015, the 70th anniversary of the end of WW II,” added Passanisi. “They are part of almost 3,000 volunteers who answered President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1943 call for a secret ‘dangerous and hazardous’ mission, not knowing their destination or objective.”

    Officially designated Jan. 1, 1944, as the 5307th Composite Unit Provisional, code-named “Galahad,” the unit was later “nicknamed” Merrill’s Marauders by the press after their commander, Brig. Gen. Frank D. Merrill.

    Modern-day Army Rangers, the 75th Ranger Regiment, honor their legacy by wearing the Marauder patch as their crest. Camp Frank D. Merrill, where the rigorous mountain phase of Ranger training is conducted in north Georgia, is named in honor of the unit’s commander.

    Retired Ranger Karl Monger, founder and chief executive officer of the non-profit GallantFew, Inc., will be the keynote speaker at the reunion’s Saturday night banquet. Along with producing and hosting a weekly internet talk show, “The New American Veteran,” the Dallas resident created The Darby Project (U.S. Army Rangers,) The Raider Project (Marine Corps Special Operations and Infantry combat veterans) and Wings Level (US Air Force.)

    The Marauders, with only what they could carry on their backs or pack on mules, made military history during the short eight months of their existence by marching farther -- with estimates up to 1,000 miles -- than any other American fighting force in WW II. They were supplied by airdrops from C-47 transport planes.

    The Marauders were considered “expendable,” since a plan existed to get them into Burma but no plan existed to get them out, according to Marauder, lecturer and retired Lt. Gen. Samuel V. Wilson, 90. His many accomplishments range from serving as president of Virginia’s Hampden-Sydney College to helping create Delta Force, the U.S. Army’s premier counterterrorism unit.

    According to Passanisi, "No other unit in the annals of military history, before or since has ever fought continuously under such adverse conditions, for more than four months; well beyond the known level of human jungle endurance."

    They trudged behind enemy lines up the foothills of the Himalayas and into the jungles of northern Burma to capture the only all-weather airstrip May 17, 1944, at Myitkyina, crushing Japan’s control of the sky and enabling the Allies to safely fly supplies into Burma for connecting the Ledo and Burma roads and opening up a crucial pathway into China.

    Jungle diseases, including malaria, dysentery and mite-typhus alongwith malnutrition and exhaustion, had ravaged their numbers so only about 300 of the remaining original Marauders were still considered fit for combat. After the Marauders reached the airstrip, a second wave of men, replacements without combat experience, began flying in. They became part of the 5307th CUP before it was disbanded several months later on Aug. 10, 1944.

    Last year on the 70th anniversary of the unit’s disbanding, governors of every state in the nation, except California, issued proclamations or similar documents declaring August 10, 2014 as National WW II Merrill’s Marauder Day.

    The massive grassroots effort to have the special day designated was organized by Merrill’s Marauders Proud Descendants (MMPD,) a nonprofit organization comprised of sons and daughters of Marauders, along with their grandchildren and other relatives.

    The MMPD also plans the annual reunions and is currently trying to gather support to have the U.S. Congress issue the Congressional Gold Medal to Merrill’s Marauders.

    For their accomplishments, Merrill’s Marauders were awarded the Presidential Unit Citation and have the extremely rare distinction of every member receiving the Bronze Star Medal. There were six Distinguished Service Crosses, four Legions of Merit and 44 Silver Star Medals awarded. Twenty-five Merrill’s Marauders have been inducted into the Army Ranger Hall of Fame.

    Three of the five confirmed Army Rangers who have lived to 100 years of age or older are Merrill’s Marauders. They include the late Everett W. Stanke, who died at 101 on Aug. 12, 2015, at home in Edgerton, WI. He would have turned 102 in November.

    Merrill's Marauder and Nisei warrior Roy Matsumoto died the evening of Easter Sunday 2014 about two weeks away from his 101st birthday at his home in Friday Harbor, WA. It was the 70th Easter Sunday anniversary of the 2nd Battalion being rescued by the 1st and 3rd Battalions after being surrounded for almost two weeks by the Japanese at the battle of Nphum ga. Matsumoto played a key role in that rescue.

    The oldest Merrill’s Marauder is John M. Jones, publisher of the "Greeneville Sun" in Tennessee. He turns 101 this December. He and his wife "Arne," also 100 years old, celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary this year. Jones kept a journal during the Burma campaign, which has been published as "The War Diary of the 5307th Composite Unit Provisional," and collaborated with the late Dr. E.T. Hopkins on the comprehensive Marauder history, "Spearhead."  

  • 09/01/2015 12:59 PM | Anonymous

    John Michael Prochak, age 92 of Austintown, Ohio, passed away on Monday, August 31, 2015 at 3:55 AM, from glioblastoma, cancer of the brain.  He was born February 26, 1923 in Campbell, Ohio, the son of Kathryn Jasack and Joseph Hauzlik Prochak.

    John is survived by his daughters, Christine (Patrick) Andino of Berlin Center, and Cathy (Pete) Evanovitz of Youngstown; three granddaughters, Jaci Clark of Youngstown, Ashley (Matthew) Hathaway of Wooster, and Kendall (Benjamin) Brewer of Charleston, SC; four great-grandchildren, Gregory Bass, Boston Clark, and Ridley Clark all of Youngstown, and Peyton Hathaway of Wooster; and one great-great-granddaughter, Savannah Bass of Medina; as well as his only brother, Edward Prochak, 88 of Youngstown, and his sister, Francis Zander, 90, of Riverside, CA.

    Other than his parents, John was preceded in death by his wife of 53 years, Theresia Christine Muehlbacher Prochak, who passed away on November 29, 2006 of Alzheimer's; and four sisters, Mary Jasack, Anne Dumiak, Bertha Mitulinski, and Helen Grahovac.

    John's military career spanned 27 years in the US Army through WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. He was one of the original Darby's Rangers from WWII and was a POW for nearly two years in Germany. He was also the oldest soldier to complete jump training and become a paratrooper. John's time in the military gained him numerous commendations and medals including the Bronze Star.

    He will be remembered by all who knew him as a kind and loving father, grandfather, and friend. A true hero will be laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery with full military honors.

    Calling hours will be held from 5-7 PM, Wednesday, September 2, 2015 at the Lane Family Funeral Homes-Austintown Chapel, 5797 Mahoning Avenue in Austintown. Military services will take place at 7 PM immediately following the visitation period.

    In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be given to Wounded Warrior Project, Inc., PO Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675.


  • 08/07/2015 11:13 PM | Anonymous

    Antouine James Castaneda, of Phoenix, Arizona, died on July 23, 2015. Antoine’s family includes his 2 daughters: Vanessa (6 yrs. old) and Viviana (4 yrs. old); parents: Rick and Sarah Castaneda, and Natalie and Todd Elyea; brother, Dustin Castaneda (Amanda Norwood); former wife, Sharon Castaneda; grandparents: Yvonne Becker, Stan Worden, Pat Worden, Matthias and Frances Eichhorn, and Jane and Robert Elyea, great-grandmother, Beatrice Worden; 2 nephews: Logan and Jaxon Castaneda; several loving aunts and uncles; and his military family. Visit with family and friends while sharing food and refreshments on Thursday from 4:00 – 8:00 p.m. at the Life Story Funeral Home, Betzler-Kalamazoo, 6080 Stadium Drive, Kalamazoo 375-2900 where services will be held Friday at 11:00 a.m. Burial with Military Honors provided by his Platoon’s honor guard will follow at Ft. Custer National Cemetery. Please visit Antouine’s personal memory page at www.lifestorynet.com where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign his guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial contributions may be made to Soldier’s Best Friend.

    Funeral for Ranger  Antouine Castaneda

    Thursday 13 August 1600-2000 visitation

    6080 Stadium Dr.

    Kalamazoo, Michigan


    Friday 14 August


    Ft. Custer National Cemetery

    15501 Dickman Rd.

    Augusta, Michigan


    Life Story / Obituary


    All who knew Antouine Castaneda would agree that he was larger than life. A brave man of honor and courage, he accomplished a great many things of which to be proud, but he was a humble, generous, and selfless person who would do anything for anyone. Antouine would say that his greatest accomplishment was becoming a father, and since he was a kid at heart he loved nothing more than goofing around with his girls. He was a loving and kindhearted man who was quick to forgive, never holding a grudge. With a smile always at the ready, Antouine was a stranger to none and a friend to all. Life will never be the same within him here, but his spirit will remain a vibrant presence in the hearts and lives of all who were within his reach.

    The 1980s were a time unlike any other in American history. We were on the brink of the age of technology with several noteworthy accomplishments that moved us forward. Video game systems, camcorders, and the first cellular phones emerged while names like David Hasselhoff, Michael J. Fox, and Madonna became part of our world. Amidst this exciting time was an exciting time in the lives of Rick and Natalie Castaneda for a much different reason as they were eagerly anticipating the birth of their second child as the heat of the summer held Allegan, Michigan, firmly in its grip in July of 1983. The big day finally arrived when the baby boy they named Antouine James drew his first breath on July 23rd. He was 16 months younger than his brother, Dustin, and experienced a typical upbringing.

    As a young boy Antouine was full of life. He was a talented skateboarder, along with his brother, and seemed to be out boarding all day every day. Antouine also snowboarded and played a variety of sports in which he excelled. His parents divorced when he was in middle school, and he later went to the Chicago area to live with his father. While there, Antouine attended Bartlett High School where he played basketball. He loved hanging out with his friends, skateboarding, working out, and really got into nutrition. Antouine generally ate healthy and drank plenty of milk, but he usually ran through Burger King after a workout to get two Whopper Jr sandwiches, or “fat boy cake,” as he called them. Of course he still ate dinner at home, too!

    The day after graduating from high school in 2001, Antouine enlisted in the Army and spent a substantial amount of time at Fort Benning, Georgia. He went on to Ranger school and was in Iraq for the invasion. As part of the 75th Ranger Regiment for four years, Antouine was sent to the Northern region to take over an airfield. He completed three tours in Iraq in addition to one tour in Afghanistan. Known as “Cas,”Antouine became a sergeant and was among the best of the best. Recently, he was one of the four Army Rangers who were selected to be a part of the 60th anniversary celebration. He and his fellow Rangers reenacted the D-Day invasion by parachuting onto the beach of Normandy. Antouine woke up every day and said,

    "Rangers lead the way,” 10 times. He then went on to work in security with Blackwater Worldwide at the highest level of security. Throughout his three years there, Antouine, who was known as “Lips,” put his life on the line for dignitaries several times.

    Not to be forgotten during Antoine’s years in school was his introduction to fellow classmate, Sharon Smith. He usually called her “Bugsy,” and they became high school sweethearts. They dated for several years and on August 4, 2007, they were married. They made their home in Mesa, Arizona, and built a new home complete with a pool, an enormous 72 inch television, and the big marlin that he caught while on his honeymoon. Together they were blessed with two daughters, Vanessa and Viviana, who are six and four, respectively. Antouine loved nothing more than being a father, and his girls were the light of his life. They called him “King James” since they frequently played princess together, and every night he read them books and also sang “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.” When they weren’t playing dress up, Antouine and his girls loved going to the zoo or swimming, swinging, or doing gymnastics together. Although his marriage ended in divorce last year, he was forever grateful for their girls.

    Antouine was a lover of life and a man of many interests. He was a great cook whose specialties included pasta, chicken, and cookies, and he loved cheese, cheese pizza, Mexican food, and hot wings - the hotter the better! Every morning Antouine started his day with peaches and cream oatmeal and egg whites, and he also had cases of granola bars on hand and also enjoyed protein shakes. Thanksgiving usually found him deep frying a turkey. Antouine had the time of his life on a 21 day primitive backpacking vacation to Brazil. He liked Jack Daniels, Johnnie Walker, and lots of water, reading military history, all types of music, stars, and all the Disney movies. In fact, Antouine was known for his ability to recite lines from Lion King and Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory. He was impossible to defeat when it came to playing Medal of Honor, and his dogs were very special to him.

    The sort of person everyone immediately loved, Antouine Castaneda was a blessing in every way. He had the biggest heart with a quick wit and a drive to excel in everything he did. Someone who was generous with the homeless, especially around the holidays, Antouine was completely selfless as he lived to serve others. He adored his daughters, and he was the best dad around as his devotion to his daughters was unmatched. Antouine had been in school working toward becoming a counselor for troubled teens after serving his country for numerous years. His life cut much too short, he will be forever missed but never forgotten.

  • 05/09/2015 2:13 PM | Anonymous

    (Curtesy of the ledger-enquirer; by CHUCK WILLIAMS, May 8, 2015) 

    Ranger students tackle the Darby Queen obstacle course at Camp Darby, Sunday April 26, 2015. The Army's Ranger School, which has historically been open to males only allowed females to qualify for the Army's most elite training course as part of the military's gender integration assessment. At the beginning of Ranger School, 19 woman joined the course, and 8 females continued beyond Ranger Assessment Phase (RAP) Week.

    The U.S. Army Ranger School class that started nearly three weeks ago with 19 women will move to the next phase in the North Georgia mountains without any females, the Army announced Friday.

    The eight women who survived the first week of physical assessment did not make the cut when they were evaluated for their performance during the Camp Darby phase of the demanding 62-day, four-phase course that has never been open to women.

    The eight women and 101 men who did not make the cut in the Camp Darby phase will be picked up by the next class on Thursday and redo the nearly two weeks of training, according to an Army news release.

    “I had the opportunity to visit the Ranger students yesterday and was impressed that whether going forward to the mountains or recycling the Darby phase they were motivated to continue training and focused on successfully completing the Ranger course,” said Maj. Gen. Scott Miller, commanding general of the Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning.

    “They’re a strong group of soldiers, who are working their way through the U.S. Army’s most physically and mentally demanding course.”

    This is the first time in its more than six-decade history that elite Ranger training has been open to women. There are currently no plans to open up other Ranger courses to women, but those who recycle will be allowed to complete the process just as any male soldier would.

    A class of 399 soldiers started the course April 19. More than half the initial class was dropped in the first week. When the class moved to the Camp Darby phase after the physical assessment, 71 students who had been recycled from previous classes were added, according to the Army.

    Of those 263 who started the current Darby phase, 115 will move to the mountains — the third of four phases. The remainder have either been recycled or dropped.

    Each student has up to three recycle opportunities to try to complete the leadership course. Less than 30 percent of all Rangers go straight through the course without recycling.

    Those who are recycled and must repeat a phase face a more difficult challenge than those who go straight through the course and graduate, said retired Command Sgt. Maj. Dennis L. Smith, who owns Uncommon Athlete Inc., a downtown Columbus workout and training facility. In Smith’s final Army assignment three years ago, he was the command sergeant major for the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade.

    “In my opinion, physically and mentally they have made life harder,” Smith said Friday. “But I am a glass half full kind of guy. They can use this to their advantage. They know what is coming next.”

    Once the initial Ranger Assessment Phase was complete, the soldiers were put into small units and had to work as a team to plan and execute military missions. The soldiers in the Camp Darby phase were scored by Ranger instructors on their patrol leadership skills, spot checks on their ability to do certain tasks and peer evaluations.

    They did these assignments with a lack of food and sleep to create stressful situations that simulate combat.

    The 109 students who recycled Friday will stay in the school and work around Camp Rogers and Camp Darby as they wait for the next class to roll through.

    “They are not going anywhere; they are there,” Smith said. “The good news for them is they get three meals a day and fairly good sleep. They will be doing details that need to be done. They could be cutting grass or mending fences. They will also be going to some classes.”

    The training for the 115 who passed Friday now moves to Camp Merrill near Dahlonega, Ga., where the Ranger candidates will continue the small-unit training they started a couple of weeks ago at Camp Darby on the eastern edge of Fort Benning.

    Once the mountain phase is completed, the training moves to Camp Rudder in the swamps of the Florida panhandle near Destin. This class is scheduled to graduate at Fort Benning on June 19.

    The standards for the course have not been altered, according to Army officials.

    This Ranger Course class is part of an Army-wide evaluation of women’s roles in the military branch.

    All of the women who started this course had successfully completed a two-week Ranger Assessment Training Course at the Warrior Training Center on Fort Benning.

    The training course mirrors the first couple of weeks of Ranger School with the physical fitness test, land navigation and marching. There were 113 women who went through the pre-Ranger course and 20 were slotted for the class that started April 19. When it came time to report, 19 of the 20 women reported. Three of the 19 failed the initial physical assessment. Eight more were dropped after the first week, leaving the eight who were recycled Friday.

    The names of the female soldiers in this class have not been released by the Army. Some of the Army leadership have expressed concerns about the pressure they could face by being identified.

    Only about 3 percent of Army soldiers have earned the Ranger tab.

  • 04/02/2015 8:03 PM | Anonymous

    FORT MEADE, Md. (April 2, 2015) -- Six more women have qualified to attend the first Army Ranger course to include women, bringing to 12, the number of female Soldiers eligible for the elite school.

    The six women successfully finished the Ranger Training Assessment Course, or RTAC, March 19, along with 25 of the 85 men who began that two-week course.

    The six women were among 34 female Soldiers who began that RTAC, March 6, on Fort Benning, Georgia, which hosts both the RTAC and the Ranger course.

    Integrating women into the Ranger program comes as the Army opens jobs to women that were previously closed to them. The physically and mentally grueling, two-month Ranger School Assessment begins, April 20.

    "This class reaffirmed that RTAC, just like Ranger School, is very tough," said Maj. William Woodard Jr., A Company commander, Army National Guard Warrior Training Center on Fort Benning, which conducts the RTAC "The standards are the same during the gender-integrated RTAC iterations, and they won't change."

    Five women qualified during the first iteration of the gender-integrated RTAC in January. One woman qualified during the second RTAC in February. The final gender-integrated RTAC runs April 3-18.

    Not all Soldiers are required to attend the two-week RTAC before attending the Ranger School. However, successfully completing an RTAC is mandatory for all female Soldiers, who want to attend the Ranger course. Additionally, all National Guard Soldiers, who want to attend the Ranger course, must also successfully complete an RTAC. Active-duty male Soldiers, who do not work in a physically demanding environment, may also attend an RTAC.

    RTAC assesses the physical and mental abilities of the Ranger hopefuls through a series of rigorous tests of their mental and physical limits, including fitness challenges, navigating terrain, and carrying out infantry tactics.

    For more ARNEWS stories, visit www.army.mil/ARNEWS, or Facebook at www.facebook.com/ArmyNewsService, or Twitter@ArmyNewsService



  • 02/08/2015 8:56 AM | Anonymous

    First Five Women Green-Lighted for Ranger School

    Military.com New (by Matthew Cox)

    Five female soldiers have passed the pre-Ranger course at Fort Benning, Ga., making them the first women who will attend U.S. Army Ranger School this spring.

    The five females successfully completed the Ranger Training Assessment Course, or RTAC, Jan. 30 alongside 53 males at the Army National Guard's Warrior Training Center at Benning.

    The first integrated RTAC class began with 122 students: 26 women and 96 men.

    "This first iteration of an integrated RTAC has provided significant lessons-learned as we conduct a deliberate and professional way forward to the integrated assessment in April," Maj. Gen. Scott Miller, commanding general of the Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, said in a recent press release.

    Three other RTAC classes will be held prior to the Ranger Course Assessment, which begins April 20. The final three RTAC courses with male and female students will be conducted Feb. 6-21, March 6-21 and April 3-18.

    This historic pilot program and assessment comes amid increasing demand in recent years to open up to women all military specialties, including infantry. Army leadership is open to the idea, but insists there will be no lowering of standards.

    The effort is the result of former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta's January 2013 directive that all services open combat-arms roles to women that so far have been reserved for men. The services have until 2016 to make this happen.

    Ranger School is a punishing ordeal designed to push combat leaders, both officers and sergeants, to their mental and physical limits. About half of all candidates fail to earn the coveted, gold and black Ranger tab.

    RTAC was designated a pre-requisite for all women who wish to be part of the Ranger Course Assessment. The course is designed to improve the combat arms functional skills of officer and enlisted volunteers. It assesses eligible Army active duty, National Guard and foreign military soldiers on their ability to meet the challenges of Ranger School.

    How female students will fare remains to be seen, but past studies have indicated they are likely more often to sustain injuries associated with combat training and combat than their male counterparts.

    Historically, more than half of the soldiers who complete RTAC will successfully complete Ranger School, according to the release.

    RTAC instructors were "impressed with the level of physical fitness and dedication of the majority of female volunteers," Lt. Col. Edmund "Beau" Riely, commander of ARNG Warrior Training Center, said in the release.

    The two-week long RTAC consists of two phases. The first phase mirrors the assessment phase at Ranger School and is designed to assess a soldier's physical and mental abilities. During this phase, a student conducts a PT test, a swim test, land navigation, and a 6-mile foot march.

    The second phase of RTAC is a field training exercise. It's designed to train soldiers on troop-leading procedures and patrolling, skills which will be used extensively during Ranger School.

    -- Matthew Cox can be reached at matthew.cox@military.com


  • 01/26/2015 9:35 AM | Anonymous

    John Hugh Hartwell, 91, passed away January 22, 2015. Born Nov. 26, 1923 to C. R. and Kate (Sturtevant) Hartwell in Hinsdale, IL. 89 year resident of Grandview Heights, Veteran of U.S. Army, WW II where he was a member of Merrill’s Marauders and was awarded the Silver and Bronze Stars. Loved and remembered by many for coaching Little and Pony League Baseball. Member of First Community Church, Past-President of Bobcat Boosters, member of the Rooks and former member of the Tri-Village Lions. Preceded in death by daughter Sue Blevins, brother Philip and sister Carolyn. Survived by wife Gloria; daughters Karen (Rande) Mack and Kathy (Attila) Szabo; son Patrick, son-in-law Ric Blevins; grandchildren Erica Blevins, Leah Mack (Sam) Ore, Riley Mack; sister Ann Ligett. The family will receive friends on Saturday, January 31, 3-6 pm at the DEYO-DAVIS FUNERAL HOME, 1578 W. First Ave., Grandview Hts. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society. Online condolences may be made at www.deyodavis.com

    Charitable donations may be made to:

    American Cancer Society
    5555 Frantz Road, Dublin OH 43017
    Tel: 1-800-227-2345
    Web: http://www.cancer.org

  • 12/28/2014 12:21 PM | Anonymous

    SGM (retired) Virgil Glen Geiger, Jr. passed away October 25, 2014 at his home in Childersburg, Alabama.  Glen, formerly of Semmes, was born August 2, 1949, in Mobile, AL.  Glen was preceded in death by his father Virgil Glen Geiger, Sr., mother Gwendolyn Deas Stewart and stepfather Lawrence M. Stewart. He is survived by his wife, Susan Geiger, of New Llano, Louisiana , two sons by his first Wife Maribel Barrias of the Republic of Panama. The sons are Major (USAF) Jose Antonio Geiger (Raihana) stationed in Great Britain and their three children (Omar, Yasmin, and Sarah) and son, Jonathan Glen Geiger of Childersburg, Alabama. Brother, Alex Stewart (Robbie) of Childersburg, Alabama. He was a graduate of Mary G. Montgomery High School (Class of 1967) and Troy State University. He served 23 years in the United States Army, serving from 1975 to 1998 retired at the rank of Sergeant Major. Virgil served his country at various locations in the US; including Fort Polk, Louisiana, Fort Benning, Georgia, Fort Lewis, Washington, and Ranger Training camps in Dahlonega, Georgia and Dugway, Utah. He served overseas in Asia, Europe, Central America, and Middle East. His awards and decorations include legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal (5 awards), Army Good Conduct Medal (7 awards), National Defense Service Medal, Overseas Service Award, Master Parachutist Badge, Pathfinders Badge, and Ranger Tab. Glen loved his family, fellow Christians at Doctrinal Studies Bible Church, United States of America, the flag of this great nation, and all the service members of the different branches of the military.

    Burial was at the Alabama National Cemetery in Montevallo, Alabama.


  • 12/05/2014 11:05 PM | Anonymous

    FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, Dec. 5, 2014) - Staff Sgt. Matthew Ammerman, a native of Noblesville, Ind., was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) when he died Dec. 3, 2014, as a result of wounds received in combat.

    “Staff Sgt. Matthew Ammerman was an exceptional Soldier in all regards.  He showed himself to be a standout shortly after arrival in the unit and his efforts have made an impact on his unit and our mission.  We, as a nation, are fortunate to have men like Matt,” said Lt. Col. Tommy Stoner, commander of the 7th SFG (A)’s 3rd Battalion.  “He not only represented what we should all aspire to be, but he lived it.  His loss is a great blow and he will be missed and mourned by this unit.  Our focus will be supporting his family in any way possible and ensuring that they are taken care of during this difficult process.”

    Ammerman joined the Army in July 2004, attending basic and advanced individual training as well as the U.S. Army Airborne School at Fort Benning, Georgia.  He was then assigned to 3rd Battalion, 509th Infantry Battalion (Airborne) based at Fort Richardson, Alaska, as an anti-armor specialist.  Ammerman deployed twice with the unit, once to Iraq in 2006 for 14 months, and later to Afghanistan in 2009 for 12 months, serving as an assistant gunner, fire team leader and squad leader.

    In May of 2011, he was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment based at Fort Stewart, Ga. and served as a senior sniper and squad leader with the battalion.

    He volunteered for Special Forces in 2012, graduated in 2013 as a Special Forces communications sergeant and was assigned to 3rd Bn., 7th SFG (A) in July,2014.  He deployed in late fall of 2014 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

    Ammerman’s awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Iraq Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Global War on Terror Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon and NATO Medal.

    He was also the recipient of the Special Forces Tab, the Ranger Tab, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Expert Infantryman Badge, the Parachutist Badge and the Driver and Mechanic Badge.


<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 


Copyright 2014 - US Army Ranger Association, Inc. - P.O. Box 52126 - Fort Benning, GA 31995-2126  All Rights Reserved.

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software