4th Sustainment Brigade's Weapons Smoking at the Range

FORT HOOD, Texas — Soldiers and officers within the 4th Sustainment Brigade took to the ranges Nov. 27, to familiarize and qualify on various weapons.

More than 100 Officers, Warrant Officers, Noncommissioned Officers, and Soldiers sent in excess of 7,000 rounds down range during their qualifying period.

“The intent was to safely qualify and familiarize Soldiers with the weapons,” said 1st Lt. Garrett Funabiki, maintenance platoon leader, Headquarters Headquarters Company, 4th Sustainment Brigade and the Officer In Charge of the M2 machine gun and M249 squad automatic weapon ranges, “the Soldiers haven’t seen the weapons in some time, and it was a great to have a range.”

Soldiers are required to qualify with their weapons every six months. The opportunity was provided for senior NCO’s and officers of the brigade, and for Soldiers of the Brigade Troops Battalion.

For new Soldiers who never fired anything but the M16 or M4 assault rifles, the chance for weapons familiarization was there to receive actual hands-on experience.

Sgt. Alan J. Harington, the armorer for HHC, BTB, gave a briefing to all individuals firing on the M9 pistol range.

Harington spoke on proper hand grip placement, going over three different styles, which differed by thumb placement.

He also went over two different stances to help new firers adjust to the M9’s recoil and different sight picture.

“To aim the weapon,” Harington said, “all you have to do is line up the white dots and make a snowman in front of the target.” “You do that, and you’ll hit [the target] every time.”

“The range was run well,” said Pfc. Mark D. Dugent, a transportation management coordinator with the 4th SB, “it was the first time I fired and qualified with the M9.”

“It gave me the chance to familiarize myself with the [M9,] Dugent said, “I am familiar with every other weapon in the Army except for the pistol, and [the range] gave me the opportunity to come out and learn about it.”

“It was a great [M9] range,” said Sgt. 1st Class Dawn M. Spradley, the 4th SB Schools’ NCO, “the intent was to qualify all soldiers in preparation for the units’ upcoming deployment.”

“74 individuals came out to the M9 range and fired more than 3,000 rounds; it was real fun running [the range,]” she said.

“The ranges were good, everybody from range safeties to firers were interacting well,” said Funabiki, “and that in itself made the experience for the Soldiers that much better.