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Joint training

Strykers, engineers, fast-rope together

3rd Brigade masters get Soldier-engineers certified on the ropes

Published: 12:42PM April 17th, 2014

Rappel masters from 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, worked in conjunction with Soldiers from 555th Engineer Brigade April 8 to complete rappelling/fast-rope training recertification.

Staff Sgt. Daniel Guenther, a platoon sergeant and rappel master with 1st Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, said that rappel masters are required to conduct some rappel instruction every six months; otherwise, they need to be recertified.

“Every rappel master here is a certified rappel master,” Guenther said. “However, since we have not performed our (rappel) duties in the last six months, we have to execute (training) and get recertified by a current rappel master. So, this right here is recertifying all the rappel-masters in order to facilitate training on down the line.”

As part of their recertification duties, the Arrowhead Bde. rappel masters needed to instruct other Soldiers how to rappel, with 555th Engineer Brigade assistance.

During the morning training session, the 3rd Bde., 2nd Inf. Div. rappel masters showed their students how to properly tie knots, check equipment and rappel down the wall.

“It builds confidence,” stated Guenther. “It’s a huge confidence builder. You get up on that 30-foot wall and you’re looking down and all you see is ground; some guys freeze, some guys don’t.”

Confidence is important in military rappelling, as many of these techniques are used in combat to climb down walls or enter buildings through windows, he added.

It comes down to trusting the equipment, Guenther said.

“If you trust your equipment, yourself, and that your belay-man below isn’t going to fail you, you’ll have the confidence to complete this task,” he said.