Operation Atlantic Resolve in Romania
3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team Puts Boots on the Ground
With the fast-paced winds from helicopter blades whizzing by his head, US Army Pvt. Daniel Raya readies himself for the next task on his agenda. As he makes a break for the UH-60 Black Hawk only 20 feet away, he embarks upon the first of many training missions he will be doing as a part of the boots-on-ground element of Operation Atlantic Resolve.
Raya, a member of Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, at Fort Carson, Colorado, is on his first deployment and is determined to train hard during the long months ahead.
“Now that we’re here I’m excited to begin training and do whatever it takes to get our job done,” said Raya.
NATO Mission to Deter Russian Aggression
The training he’s referring to is Operation Atlantic Resolve, a NATO mission conducted to enhance U.S. and European cooperation, as well as to promote regional stability and to deter aggression.
Raya’s unit will be working closely with Romanian soldiers on the ground in many cross training events to support and strengthen U.S. and European alliances, and today’s event involved the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade using its aerial capabilities to enhance air to ground integration.
Serving in the Army was the first of many goals completed for the 19-year old infantryman, and fresh out of basic training, he jumped into this deployment head first.
“He only got to us a few weeks ago and so far he’s trained in every opportunity he’s had,” said Sgt. Richard Morrill, Raya’s team leader in Bravo Company, “He’s very hard working.”
Raya’s determination should serve him well on this deployment as he will have various learning opportunities ahead, according to Morrill.
“Here at Atlantic Resolve we get a fantastic opportunity to work with each other. We will also get to work with other countries which will serve as learning tools for the future,” Morrill added.”
Raya, a native of Oxnard, California already has plans to put those future lessons to use.
“Once I’m done serving my country I’d like to get into law enforcement.” he said.
During this deployment, Raya will be honing his infantry skills, and he’s excited about showcasing them in a section of the world few Americans get a chance to visit.
“Finally I’m here,” said Raya, “I’m in the best shape of my life and happy to be here.”
Source: US Army (USAREUR)