Maj. Chase Spears | Mission Command Training Program
Last week, 18 soldiers from the Mission Command Training Program returned from supporting Joint Task Force-Civil Support at Joint Base LangleyEustis, Va., and Joint Task Force-Theater Support Command at Naval Air Station New Orleans. This marked the first redeployment of Fort Leavenworth based forces supporting U.S. Army North’s whole of-nation mission to help contain the COVID-19 virus.
In early April, MCTP deployed about 100 training advisers to five ARNORTH task forces, along with an additional 16 advisers from across Combined Arms Center units based at Fort Leavenworth. MCTP Commander Col. Shane Morgan said ARNORTH “specifically (requested) leaders with operational- and strategiclevel planning expertise.”
These teams supported ARNORTH-led task force commands around the nation.
“Our MCTP leaders are currently performing critical COVID-19 leadership duties, ranging from planning, to operations, to logistics, and interagency liaison,” Morgan said.
The training advisers from Fort Leavenworth provided analysis to inform commanders’ decision-making as part of integrated military support to the COVID-19 containment efforts, which are led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and local authorities.
These training advisers came from across five operations groups. Operations Group Alpha deployed to Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., as part of Joint Task Force-Civil Support, with a priority on developing products to assist with COVID-19 command decision-making for virus containment efforts in the northeastern United States.
Operations Group Charlie is serving with the 46th Military Police Brigade in Task Force Center, an Army National Guard headquarters that is responsible for virus response efforts across the Midwest. Located in Battle Creek, Mich., these training advisers are providing planning analysis to better synchronize defense support of FEMA and local authorities in Iowa City, Iowa; Austin, Texas; Minneapolis; Madison, Wis., and Columbus, Ohio.
Training advisers from Operations Group Delta deployed to Salt Lake City as part of Task Force West, an Army Reserve headquarters that is providing planning assistance, as well as command and control support for the 593rd Expeditionary Sustainment Command and the 627th Field Hospital.
The team from Operations Group Sierra is serving with Joint Task Force-Theater Support Command, 377th Theater Support Command, from Naval Air Station, New Orleans. The team’s missions include developing logistics, supporting national border operations, and linking with federal agencies to develop predictive analysis of COVID-19 hot spots across the country.
A team from Operations Group Bravo is serving in the U.S. Army North Headquarters at Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, which directs the overall Army support mission.
The process for moving more than 100 leaders on short notice depended on the quick reaction of agencies across Fort Leavenworth.
“We are incredibly proud of our MCTP leaders who answered our nation’s COVID-19 call, and greatly appreciate all who enabled their immediate deployment in support of this critical mission,” Morgan said.
In addition to sending personnel to support ARNORTH’s task forces, MCTP provided teams to support the Fort Leavenworth Emergency Operations Center, Garrison Public Affairs Office and Munson Army Health Center.
Though the first elements of the deployed teams are returning, the mission is not yet complete. The situation on the ground continues to evolve at each of the task forces. Decisions on when additional MCTP personnel will return depend on the mission needs at each task force location. Every returning soldier will quarantine for 14 days upon return.