FORT McCOY, Wis. –
More than 7,000 troops made up the environment that was the 86th Training Division’s Combat Support Training Exercise 86-23-02 at Fort McCoy from Aug. 12-26.
That group of troops included Army Reserve Soldiers with rotational training units as well as training partners from combined and joint forces from the Navy, Marines, and Air Force and international service members from Great Britain, Canada, and Estonia, 86th Training Division organizers said.
“There were approximately 46 rotational training units involved and 16 training partners in this exercise,” said Maj. Jon Dahl, public affairs officer with the 86th.
All the rotational training units conducted simulated combat operations in “a dynamic and complex environment in support of live, constructive, and virtual maneuver forces with joint and coalition partners,” Dahl said.
The Chief of the Army Reserve and Commanding General of Army Reserve Command, Lt. Gen. Jody Daniels, visited the training in mid-August. She stated on a Facebook post that visiting with hundreds of troops and seeing the training first-hand went well.
“Great to see our Soldiers flexing their skills and equipment,” Daniels stated on the post.
The CSTX training environment falls in line with the 84th Training Command’s training apparatus. According to the 84th, they are the executing agent for the Army Reserve’s Combat Support Training Program, or CSTP.
“The CSTP is comprised of Warrior Exercises and Combat Support Training Exercises, which are large-scale collective training exercises designed to immerse units into tactical training environments that closely replicate what they might experience in operational deployments,” the 84th website states at https://www.usar.army.mil/Commands/Functional/84th-TNG-CMD/About-Us. “The 84th TC provides mission-appropriate training events in accordance with Forces Command and U.S. Army Reserve Command directives, to enable commanders to achieve, improve, and sustain premobilization collective readiness.”
Troops were located across Fort McCoy. Quartermaster troops were operating at Big Sandy Lake on South Post. Other units were set up at Young Air Assault Strip, Logistical Support Area Freedom, and several other austere locations on South Post.
On North Post, troops conducted training out of Logistical Support Area Liberty as well as several training area locations in forested and open areas.
And while numerous variations of training was being conducted throughout the post each day of the exercise, there was also infrastructure improvement and construction getting done through troop projects during the exercise.
On the cantonment area, the 996th Engineer Company of Milwaukee completed a project to replace 140 feet of sidewalk.
“They came in and went to work right away,” said Fort McCoy Troop Projects Coordinator Larry Morrow with the Fort McCoy Directorate of Public Works. “We appreciate all the work they’re doing for us in improving Fort McCoy.”
The engineer company received the project on Aug. 14 and went to work right away. Project completion was Aug. 21. The 996th also worked on adding more metal siding to buildings to another troop project at Tactical Training Base Courage on South Post.
And at Logistical Support Area Liberty the 467th Engineer Battalion and 477th Engineer Platoon and others continued work on an ongoing troop project that began in 2022 to create new office buildings. During CSTX, engineers got a fifth building framed and mostly constructed.
“That was great to see,” Morrow said.
And all throughout the exercise, participants also received support from Fort McCoy Garrison personnel within the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security; Directorate of Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; and more. Staff with the Fort McCoy Logistics Readiness Center’s Food Service Team and Central Issue Facility also were crucial to the success of the exercise, officials said.
But the CSTX was about the training. Across the board, 86th Training Division planners said the exercise met or exceeded expectations, Dahl said.
And the Army Reserve’s leader noted in another social media post on the Fort McCoy page that the CSTX was indeed a special event.
“Awesome training being conducted by the U.S. Army Reserve,” Daniels stated.
Learn more about the Army Reserve by visiting https://www.usar.army.mil. Learn more about the 86th Training Division by visiting https://www.usar.army.mil/84thTC/86thTD.
Learn more about Fort McCoy online at https://home.army.mil/mccoy, on the Defense Visual Information Distribution System at https://www.dvidshub.net/fmpao, on Facebook by searching “ftmccoy,” and on Twitter by searching “usagmccoy.”
Also try downloading the Digital Garrison app to your smartphone and set “Fort McCoy” or another installation as your preferred base.