NEWS | July 16, 2021

LCSRON 2 Reserve Sailors Conduct Weapons Qualifications

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Hunter S. Harwell, Navy Public Affairs Support Element East, Detachment Southeast

STARKE, Fla. — Reserve Sailors from Navy Reserve Littoral Combat Ship Squadron Two (NR LCSRON 2) conducted three days of small arms weapons qualification courses at Camp Blanding Joint Training Center, July 8-10.

Courses included qualifications for the Navy handgun (M9) and rifle (M4), lowlight courses and visit, board, search, and seizure (VBSS). Reserve Sailors represented multiple Navy Operational Support Centers (NOSCs) across the U.S.

“Today we have a few different groups of Reservists,” said Chief Gunner’s Mate Alina Madiedo, gun range officer-in-charge assigned to LCSRON 2. “We have a mixture of Sailors from New York, Texas, and a few other states throughout the country. We also have [active duty] Sailors from the USS Detroit out here today, and we will have personnel from the USS Sioux City to qualify as well.”

Prior to conducting live-fire exercises, the Sailors completed several hours of classroom instruction including range safety, drawing and holstering of weapons, and clearing barrel procedures.

“The Navy handgun qualification course simulates engaging a target or threat,” said Madiedo. “You’ll know how to draw the weapon from the holster and shoot two rounds. Then assess the situation and shoot two more rounds, if needed. With every course of fire, the Sailors holster their weapon and draw it back out. That way, Sailors maintain muscle memory on how to draw their weapon. Being able to perform those movements and be proficient at them in a set time frame is critical, so you can successfully address any threats.”

In addition to qualifying with the M9 pistol, Sailors also fired the M4 carbine to become familiar with using the rifle in a watch standing scenario.

“The more people are qualified with the rifle, the more they can be called upon to support,” said Gas Turbine Systems Technician (Mechanical) 2nd Class Cody Nicholson. “A few years ago, I was manned up at a Fleet Week, and they had a need for people that were weapons qualified to man the pier watches. So, the Navy had us help out and support them there.”

Through mobilization readiness, the Navy Reserve provides support to the active component by developing and employing mobilization processes based on the MOB-to-Billet design, which expedites activation of Reserve Component forces in times of need.

“Our mission is to be mobilization-ready within a week,” said Lt. Cmdr. Timothy Cox, commanding officer of Navy Reserve Littoral Combat Ship Anti-submarine Warfare (ASW), New York City. “Specifically, for LCS, we support crews and hulls through Maintenance & Material Management (3M), weapons qualifications, Anti-terrorism/Force Protection (ATFP) watchstanding, ship commissioning, port visits, Fleet Weeks, and more.”
The LCS, a highly maneuverable, lethal, and adaptable ship designed to support focused mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare, and surface warfare missions, integrates state-of-the-art technology and streamlined crews to support current and future missions from deep water to the littorals.
Cox said the Reserve Sailors on his team worked hard to be ready to lean into the fight when called upon.
“We’re standing by to bring our citizen-Sailor expertise to supplement our active-duty counterparts,” he said.

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