War on Terrorism

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Face of Defense: Soldier Keeps Comrades Talking

By Army Sgt. Brian Tierce
Special to American Forces Press Service

Feb. 10, 2009 - Because communication on the battlefield is essential, a small group of soldiers here dedicates itself to ensuring Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers of the 1st Infantry Division's 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team can talk to one another when it counts. Army Spc. Giselle King, an Indianapolis native who serves in the brigade's Special Troops Battalion, focuses much of her time ensuring the communication readiness for personal security detachment missions at a moment's notice.

"I am there to make sure the soldiers' communications equipment is working properly and keeps working properly," King said. "I go through each truck to ensure that any problems encountered that need more than a quick fix get fixed."

For the PSD soldiers, who spend most of their time moving throughout northwestern Baghdad, the ability to talk with each other and with soldiers in other units whose ground they regularly traverse keeps the importance of the communication section in perspective.

"Without the knowledge that Specialist King and her fellow communications specialist have, we would have trouble getting on our missions on time," Army Staff Sgt. Damon Jamison of the personal security detachment said. "She is the subject-matter expert in the communications arena, and it is very important for her to be there prior to our missions."

Jamison also cited the importance of training the communication section provides.

"Specialist King brings a lot to the fight," he said. "For example, she offers classes on the equipment that we have in our vehicles and the equipment we dismount with. Without her being there and offering those classes, we would be a little less knowledgeable than we are now, so that's a good thing."

King said that as she moves forward in her deployment, the daily points of pride that keep her going come not from what she hasn't accomplished, but through each goal met and lesson learned.

"I have learned so much more about my job by being hands-on each and every morning," she said. "Each and every time I get a positive radio check, it just makes you feel all warm inside."

(Army Sgt. Brian Tierce serves in Multinational Division Baghdad with the 1st Infantry Division's 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team public affairs office.)

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