Soldiers to train in Dunkirk today

New York Army National Guard soldiers assigned to Company A of the 642nd Aviation Support Battalion and based at the New York State Armory will be training at the Chautauqua County Airport in Dunkirk today.

According to a news release from the State Division of Military & Naval Affairs, the 74 soldiers participating in the training exercise will move in military vehicles from the Armory to the airport this morning and return later that day.

The soldiers will conduct training on establishing warehouse operations at a remote location-setting up computer systems and working through warehouse operations procedures-and also establishing a Forward Area Refueling Point for Army helicopter operations. UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters based at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Rochester will fly to the airport and refuel as part of their training program.

The 642nd Aviation Support Battalion provides maintenance and logistical support to elements of the New York Army National Guard’s 42nd Combat Aviation Brigade.

Similar training will also take place today at Forness Park in Olean, involving eight soldiers. Those soldiers will move two military vehicles to the park. They will train on the Army’s Lightweight Water Purification System, and the Tactical Water Purification System at the park pond. Both systems employ reverse osmosis filters to produce drinkable water. The systems are used to support troops in the field and civil affairs operations overseas as well as to respond to disasters here at home.

According to Eric Durr, the director of Public Affairs for the Division of Military and Naval Affairs, they are announcing their training so that the public does not become alarmed when they see soldiers at the airport today.