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Global Fleet Station Wraps-up First Week of Guatemala Training

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070811-08
Release Date: 8/11/2007 11:10:00 AM


By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (SW) Cynthia Clark, Task Group 40.9 Public Affairs

PUERTO BARRIOS, Guatemala (NNS) -- The pilot Global Fleet Station (GFS) completed the first week of training during its final visit to Guatemala Aug. 10, aboard High Speed Vessel (HSV) 2 Swift.

“Our first week of training was very successful,” said Engineman Chief (SW) Roberto Calanza, training team leader from Expeditionary Training Command, based in Little Creek, Va. “We’ve introduced new courses this time around and the Guatemalan forces are responding very well to the topics of discussion, as well as, [sharing] their knowledge with their American counter parts.”

Eighty five Guatemalan service members shared knowledge in topics such as maintenance management, combat life saver medical training, U.S. Marine Corps small unit training, port security and vulnerabilities assessment, leadership principles and outboard motor maintenance.

Training was provided by teams from the U.S. Navy Expeditionary Training Command, U.S. Marine Corps
1st Marine Division in Camp Pendleton and 29 Palms, Calif., Marine Corps Training Command Quantico, Va., and U.S. Coast Guard International Training Division (ITD), in Yorktown, Va.

“The training here has been great, the students are very enthusiastic,” said U.S. Coast Guard Machinery Technician 1st Class Joe Hernandez, from ITD. “It’s my first visit to Guatemala since reporting to ITD. We have a young bunch of Sailors who are very motivated to absorb whatever information we have to give them and even more motivated to pass it on to their leaders and subordinates. These young Sailors are the future of the Guatemalan armed forces, setting the professionalism required to lead their nation’s military forces.”

Task Group (TG) 40.9, consisting of a command element, the crew of Swift, training teams from Navy Expeditionary Training Command, U.S. Coast Guard International Training Division, and Department of State representatives, is deployed as part of the pilot GFS to the Caribbean basin in Central America.

The mission is designed to validate the GFS concept for the Navy and support U.S. Southern Command objectives for its area of responsibility by enhancing cooperative partnerships with regional maritime services and improving operational readiness for the participating partner nations.

TG 40.9 is scheduled to bring their teams to Belize, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Jamaica, Nicaragua and Panama.

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