Wildfire on HWY 17 near Jeb Stuart Road

On April 14, 2018 the Fort A.P. Hill Fire Department responded to wildfire on HWY 17 near Jeb Stuart Road.  The cause of the wildfire was a downed power line on Jeb Stuart Road. The wildfire was not caused by the prescribed burn also held on Saturday.  Rappahannock Electric Coop repaired the line and the fire was extinguished late Sunday morning.

The fire was directly attacked from Highway 17 by our team to prevent the fire from leaving the Fort A.P. Hill boundary.  Highway 17 was shut down for firefighter safety (operating on the roadway) and heavy smoke conditions across the road.  Once the head of the fire was extinguished, all personnel relocated inside Fort A.P. Hill to contain the fire.

Virginia Code § 10.1 – 1142, commonly known as the Burn Law, dictates specific dates and times when burning is allowed. The law also provides specifics for prescribed burning. VA Code § 10.1-1150.1 states fire can be set is set for “prescribed burning” that is conducted in accordance with a “prescription” and managed by a “certified prescribed burn manager.”

All Fort A.P. Hill prescribed burn personnel are certified prescribed burn managers. On the day of each planned prescribed burn the forestry office prepares and has approved a Prescribed Burn Plan, an Incident Action Plan, and a Deliberate Risk Assessment.  

Local offices are notified including the Caroline, King George and Spotsylvania County Forestry offices and Dispatch Centers. The mayor’s office in Bowling Green and Port Royal are also notified as well as the Regional Forester and VA Dept. of Environmental Quality. 

Forestry personnel are also trained to the National Wildfire Coordinating Group Standards for wildland fire fighters.

Mark

Forester Mark Books uses an ATV mounted torch to ignite a prescribed burn to reduce fuels in the Fort A.P. Hill range complex. The objective of fuel reduction prescribed burns are to prevent wildfires that can be caused by live fire training.

The Garrison also has two fully manned Fire Departments 24 hours a day, year round. Duty firefighters are on standby should any prescribed burn fire leave the parameters of the burn block.

Fort A.P. Hill has a memorandum of agreement with Caroline County to provide Fire and EMS support if needed. Caroline County dispatch can request assistance should a wildfire start in any part of the County.

The prescribed burn season has ended. The next burn season will begin mid-October and end April 14 2019.

For notices in advance, about prescribed burns, noise alerts and other important information from the Garrison, sign up for Caroline Alert at https://member.everbridge.net/ and check the Fort A.P. Hill check box.

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PUBLIC NOTICE

Notice is hereby given that the Department of the Army has requested authorization from the Virginia Marine Resources Commission to replace three failed corrugated metal pipes with three new 48-inch diameter reinforced concrete pipes, install new concrete headwalls and a riprap storm apron to restore the culverted crossing of Mount Creek along Ewell Road at Fort A.P. Hill in Caroline County. Send comments/inquiries within 15 days to: Marine Resources Commission, Habitat Management Division, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, Newport News, Virginia 23607.
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Lt. Col. Andrew Q. Jordan, commander

Lt. Col. Andrew Q. Jordan, commander, U.S. Army Garrison, #fortaphill, and his leadership team hosted the installation’s quarterly awards ceremony, March 14, 2018. The installation workforce gathered at the Training Support Center and joined in recognizing employees for time in service, meritorious achievement, and dedication to the installation’s mission.

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Fort A.P. Hill Workplace Safety and Awareness Message

Fort A.P. Hill Workplace Safety and Awareness Message

If you receive a letter or package, and suspect the possibility of a suspicious substance in the letter or package, contact the police department immediately.

Do not handle or move the letter or package no matter how much it had been handled before you became suspicious. The letter or package will be evaluated by the responding police officer. If necessary, experts will be called in to further handle the situation.

If you receive or discover a suspicious letter or package:
• Do not touch, tamper with, or move it
• Call DES Desk 804-633-8888 or 8911 and report what you suspect immediately to Police.
• Police will determine if evacuation or other action is necessary
• Notify your supervisor of what you suspect
Know the emergency numbers for your local police, ambulance, and hospitals. Keep these readily available in your wallet or purse. Report Suspicious Activities to police and law enforcement.
• Be aware of packages left on door steps, porches or around your work area that you didn’t order or have the wrong information on the package.
• Never open suspicious packages with stains, strange smells, protruding wires, incorrect spelling, or with no return or unknown address.
• Be alert for individuals loitering in or around mail distribution boxes.

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Cold Cold COMEX Yields White Hot Readiness

310th Expeditionary Sustainment Command
Story by SSG Luis Delgadillo

Cold Cold COMEX Yields White Hot Readiness

Despite record breaking cold temperatures in Virginia and throughout the country, Army Reserve Soldiers continue to lean into their training with renewed vigor.

Despite record breaking cold temperatures in Virginia and throughout the country, Army Reserve Soldiers continue to lean into their training with renewed vigor. In three days, January 5-7th, units of the 55th Sustainment Brigade, Fort Belvoir, Va., transported tactical equipment 75 miles, set up communications equipment, and successfully completed its communications exercise (COMEX).

While sustainment brigades are known for their ability to sustain the force, without training to test vital communications networks and radio equipment, via a COMEX, the job of securing the victory would be harder to accomplish.

Cold Cold COMEX Yields White Hot Readiness

As the Army’s largest and most geographically dispersed sustainment brigade, the 55th SB often relies on Soldiers from its down trace elements to keep communications flowing. For the January battle assembly, brigade Soldiers, Soldiers of the 55th Special Troops Battalion’s Headquarters and Headquarter Company, and Soldiers of the 410th Brigade Signal Company fulfilled that role.

“The 410th and HHC/55th SB overcame severe weather conditions and terrain constraints to establish a battalion command post and voice/digital communications with the HQ (headquarters),” said Lt. Col. Christian Hall, commander of the 55th STB.

Cold Cold COMEX Yields White Hot Readiness

The Soldiers moved their trucks and equipment from Fort Belvoir to two different training sites at Fort A.P. Hill, Va., in order to set up a command post. With elements spread out among three training sites, the Reserve Center back at Fort Belvoir and two locations at Fort A.P. Hill the brigade’s soldiers learned valuable lessons about their equipment, lessons that they will be able to carry forward.

While the establishment of command posts and networks are routine; the transport, setup, testing and recovery of all equipment and personnel in one weekend is only typical in the Army Reserve.

“COMEX was the first of three Field Training Exercises (FTX) to prepare the 55th SB for Warfighter 18.5 and meet Ready Force X (RFX) aimpoints,“ said Hall.

Through Ready Force X, the Army Reserve places a focus on individual readiness, the warrior ethos and for specifically identified units, an emphasis on building, sustaining, mobilizing and deploying in short time windows.

With the next training event always on the horizon 55th SB Soldiers are beginning to appreciate what it means to stand at the ready.

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Wounded Warrior Deer Hunt

Soldiers from the Fort Belvoir Wounded Warrior stand with members of the A.P. Hill garrison after a successful deer hunt on the installation's expansive training grounds, Dec. 7 -- 10, 2017. (Photo Credit: Michael Meisberger (A.P. Hill))

Soldiers from the Fort Belvoir Wounded Warrior stand with members of the A.P. Hill garrison after a successful deer hunt on the installation’s expansive training grounds, Dec. 7 — 10, 2017. (Photo Credit: Michael Meisberger (A.P. Hill)


Every year, the garrison staff hosts Soldiers from the Fort Belvoir Warrior Transition Unit to visit Fort A.P. Hill for a deer hunt.

Andrew Satterwhite, army biologist and wounded warrior hunt guide lamented, “I have had the privilege of assisting with the hunt for several years. Hunting has become quite the tradition on Fort A.P. Hill over the years and the wounded warrior hunt is part of that rich history.”

“The hunting program is a vital tool for public outreach and natural resource management on Fort A.P. Hill. The Wounded warrior hunt is great opportunity for the warriors to get away from their everyday routines. Spending time out in the field and hanging around the lodge is a great way to escape.” Satterwhite said.

The hunt on the installation’s expansive training grounds was held Dec. 7 – 10 and was a tremendous success with eight wounded warriors harvesting 16 deer. A.P. Hill range operations officer, Lance Didlake, managed the event from day one until the last warrior left post with a cooler full of venison.

SFC (R) Christopher Chavez summed up his experience, “Thank you for a great weekend… It is wonderful to find people who are willing to help support wounded warriors. Also, thank you for welcoming Avery (Service Dog). Without organizations like this and him (Avery), Veterans like me would be lost.”

Fort A.P. Hill is known for being one of the best Regional Training Centers within the Department of Defense, providing affordable, innovative, flexible, and relevant training enablers in order to support Army, Joint and Interagency Readiness. The Garrison Commander usually opens the 76,000 acre installation for a four day wounded warrior deer hunt, yearly, in the month of December.

NCO in charge, SSG Stephen Wilfong wrote in his thank you letter to Fort A.P. Hill’s Command Sgt. Maj. Robert L. Parker,

“I wanted to express my gratitude for an amazing experience this past weekend. All the Soldiers had a great time and benefited from the event.

Unbeknown to many, one of the soldiers was having a very difficult time emotionally prior to the event, very depressed and feeling isolated. That Soldier opened up about his feelings one evening and went on to express how the trip inspired and rejuvenated him; he is all smiles now.

Another Soldier was concerned with a surgery he would be having on Monday, well needless to say he all but forgot about the pending surgery and enjoyed every moment he had while at Fort AP Hill.

I am certain there are many stories from over the years but these are only two that I had the honor of witnessing. I was overwhelmed by the staff and volunteers that made the stay so special. Everyone was professional, compassionate, humble and generous.”

A. P. Hill Garrison Commander, Lt. Col. Andrew Q. Jordan, said he appreciated the behind-the-scene efforts of the Family, Morale, Welfare and Recreation directorate who provided the support team members and use of the garrison’s new Hilltop cabins, cookers, and meals for the hunters.

F&MWR Marketing Manager Anna Burke and event coordinator thanked the event sponsors, “We had a phenomenal event over the weekend. More than half of our Wounded Warriors had never hunted before, and they all left the event with a successful hunt that produced full hearts and coolers! They were all thrilled with the experience!”

Jordan also thanked the involved garrison staff email for their diligent work, “The hunt was a great success and provided a much needed opportunity for these Wounded Warriors to escape to the woods and have a great time. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your commitment to this program and to our Wounded Warriors.”

By Michael Meisberger (A.P. Hill)December 26, 2017

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EOD “Defenders” take over the Hill

EOD "Defenders" take over the Hill

EOD “Defenders” take over the Hill

By Mr. Clem Gaines (20thCBRNE) November 13, 2017

Washington, D.C. – Two explosive ordnance disposal Soldiers from the 52nd Explosives Ordnance Group, Fort Campbell, Ky., were honored Nov. 7 at the annual EOD Day on the Hill in Washington, D.C.

Sgt. First Class Joshua Tygret and Sgt. Austin Murphy endured the grueling EOD competition event at Fort A.P. Hill, Va. in August and displayed operational excellence to beat out teams from the Air Force, Navy and National Guard, as well as several civilian organizations.

Shaking the hands of congressmen and getting their photos taken is not part of the usual Army day for Tygret and Murphy. “It was an honor to be able to attend an event at this level,” said Tygret, “to see the career field, across all services, come together for the common goal of helping shed light on the EOD community. It was truly inspiring.”

Reflecting on the rigors of the EOD competition, Murphy said “It was an honor to attend such an event. I hope that others can look upon this, and the opportunities presented, and encourage them to compete in the future.”

The second floor foyer at the Rayburn House Office Building was filled with Soldiers and congressional representatives at the event sponsored by the Congressional EOD Caucus and the National Defense Industrial Association. The entire foyer featured informational displays and specialized equipment with EOD specialists from each service explaining their unique missions. Soldiers from the 28th EOD Company, Fort Bragg, N.C.; the 21st EOD Co., Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M.; and the 55th EOD Co., Fort Belvoir, Va., manned their display areas and answered questions about how they use their equipment to accomplish their missions.

Recognizing their success were Reps. Rick Crawford (R-Ark.), Brian Mast (R-Fla.), and Susan Davis (D-Calif.). Each representative had a personal relationship to the military: Crawford served in the Army as an EOD technician, Mast is a retired EOD technician who suffered catastrophic injuries while attempting to defeat an improvised explosive device, and Davis is an Air Force spouse whose husband served in Vietnam and her father served in World War II.

“You all are the ones that are called when our warriors who will deal with snipers and being shot at want to back up and go the other way [because of explosive ordnance],” stated Mast during his remarks to the EOD Soldiers gathered at the event. “You are the defenders of those who defend this country.”

The Congressional EOD Caucus was formed in 2011 by Reps. Crawford and Davis with the mission to educate other congressmen about EOD’s role in keeping our troops safe abroad, but also in supporting law enforcement in the homeland. The caucus, with approximately 20 congressional representatives, added Mast and Tim Walz (D-Minn.) in 2017 as co-chairs.

Multiple senior Defense Department leaders added their congratulations to Tygret and Murphy. This included Army Lt. Gen. Joseph Anderson, deputy chief of staff for the Department of Army G3/5/7, Dr. Vayl Oxford, director, Defense Threat Reduction Agency, Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief, National Guard Bureau, and Brig. Gen. James Bonner, commander, 20th Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, Explosives Command.

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