Fort Polk Guardian 03-01-2019

Viewpoint 2/ The Guardian , a civilian enter- prise newspaper, is an authorized publication for members of the U.S. Army. Contents of the Guardian are not necessarily official views of, or en- dorsed by, the U.S. Government, De- partment of Defense, Department of the Army or Fort Polk. The Guardian is published weekly by the Public Affairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. Printed circulation is 13,000. Everything advertised in this publication shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage with- out regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other nonmerit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. A confirmed violation of this policy of equal opportunity by an ad- vertiser will result in the refusal to print advertising from that source. All editorial content of the Guardian is prepared, edited, pro- vided and approved by the Public Af- fairs Office, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk. The Guardian is printed by the Natchitoches Times , a private firm in no way connected with the Depart- ment of the Army, under exclusive written contract with Fort Polk. The civilian printer is responsible for com- mercial advertising. The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts and supplements, does not constitute en- dorsement by the Department of the Army or the Natchitoches Times of the products or services advertised. Guardian Editorial Staff Brig. Gen. Patrick D. Frank Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk commanding general Col. Jarrett Thomas II Garrison commander Kim Reischling Public affairs officer Chuck Cannon Editor Jean Dubiel Angie Thorne Staff writers Editorial Offices Building 4919, Magnolia Street Fort Polk, LA 71459-5060 Voice (337) 531-4033 Fax (337) 531-1401 Email: Trading post ads: Fort Polk Homepage Advertising For advertising contact (337) 404-7242 Email: Guardian March 1, 2019 In our view Guardian staff asked Fort Polk residents, “What career goals are you actively working on?” Here are their responses: Pfc. Michael Craig: I am working toward getting a waiver to be a specialist so I can then go to the basic leader course to be- come a section ser- geant. In the mean- time, I'm working on getting a degree in network communica- tions. Spc. Je'quan Dias: I am working for the commander's "hip pocket" scholarship, which will allow me to be released from active duty to go to school and get my degree in information technolo- gy, then come back in as a second lieutenant. Sgt. 1st Class Ka- reem Franklin: "I want to attend the master leaders course to enable me to lead Soldiers and staff in tactical operations." Spc. Alberto Re- sendiz: I am on a broadening assign- ment with the divi- sion commander, and (working on) a scholarship to earn a degree in nursing. FORT BRAGG, N.C. — Learning how to save a life is a skill that may mean the difference between life and death on the battlefield. That is why when I was given the opportunity to participate in the Combat Lifesaver Course at Fort Bragg, North Caroli- na, I leapt at the opportunity. The cold morning air, the kind that freezes your fingers and makes your ears go numb, was the first thing I noticed as I walked toward the course building across the long, dirt parking lot. I recall wishing the training would take place indoors to avoid the frigid weather. I sat down in the classroom excit- ed to learn but hesitant because I didn't know what would be expect- ed of me. While I understood everything the instructors were saying about the se- riousness of being a lifesaver, I felt like I wouldn't truly understand un- til we began the hands-on training. My understanding of the serious- ness of this training grew when they showed a video of a Soldier suffer- ing a traumatic injury, and he was losing large amounts of blood. The scene was chaotic. The medics around him were scrambling and yelling out to one another about what to do to save his life. It became evident to me that this course wasn't just a class I was at- tending, but that it would teach me skills that could mean the difference between life and death. After the classroom instruction, which lasted only a few hours, we fi- nally made it to the hands-on part of the training. We were paired up in groups and given a battle scenario in which one of us was in- jured and needed a tourniquet. I was chosen to be the first "injured" Soldier, and we all filed outside into the cold I had been hoping to avoid. I laid down across from my part- ners on the frozen grass, and I thought my job was simple — I would just lay there and let them ap- ply the tourniquet on me. But as I laid there, I began to think about what could cross an injured Soldier's mind during this moment: "Am I going to make it?" "Will I see my family again?" My partners rushed to me and ap- plied pressure to the simulated wound on my right arm, and they began applying the tourniquet. During this time, I kept recalling the video of the Soldier with the real- life trauma to his leg. I couldn't imagine the pain he must have felt, let alone the fear. The following day we learned about chest seals and, again, we watched a video during the class- room instruction. As the video rolled, showing a Soldier suffering from a gunshot wound to the chest, I saw the looks of fear, hor- ror and dis- gust on my classmates' faces. Maybe it was the sight of the blood or the screaming, but the reali- ty set in for me — I might be the per- son in the midst of all that chaos that would be the only one that could save that Soldier's life. This course is meant to prepare us as Soldiers for the harsh reality of combat. I also came to realize that there are times we forget what our brothers and sisters are going through overseas. We forget that every night while we fall asleep peacefully in our own beds that there are men and women out there going through hell. By the end of the course I gained a newfound respect for medics in the Army. I graduated with the title of Combat Lifesaver and feel proud and better equipped, if need be, to help save a brother or a sister’s life. Soldier learns importance of lifesaver course By Pvt. CARLOS FANTAUZZI Army News Service Commentary For advertising contact Theresa Larue ( ) E ail: sales