Exercise MAPLE “19 non-runners and non-gunners” RESOLVE 2015

2nd “Friendship” Troop

By Cpl Joey “Big Daddy” Schijns

If 2nd Troop, B Squadron proved anything on Exercise MAPLE RESOLVE 15, it was that the perfect killer has no friends, only targets. Not only did 2nd Troop devastate the enemy with their furious battle field manoeuvre and overwhelming fire power, 2nd Troop was also quintessential to keeping up morale for the entire squadron. How did they accomplish this, you ask? Well, it was easy with C/S 22 rolling out with a bunker literally filled with Pringle cans and a gun basket overflowing with fuzzy peaches and sour cherry blasters. Sadly, within hours Lt Erica Young had singlehandedly eaten half of the stash.

The exercise started out well for 2nd Troop with some crew and troop-level training, but by the end of the first week we were down to zero runner/gunners and the pressure was on to get them up before the first day of force-on-force. With the help of some skilled maintainers, a couple of late nights, and a whole lot of perseverance, we left P12 with 3 runner gunners. The first couple days were pretty quiet with the Troop conducting mostly hide and harbour routine, until we got the call and then it was off to battle. All was good and there was plenty of killing to be had for all, until Objective ZEBRA where 2nd Troop was tasked with supporting the infantry. The infantry left without us and, in a hurry to catch up, C/S 22 ran into 2 x T80s in a tree line 20m away. It was an epic, Fury style battle with tanks circling each other and reversing at full speed with near misses everywhere, until a tree fell onto Cpl Andrew “The Sewer King” Lonegren’s sight. Luckily, during a hard left reverse Cpl Joey “That-text-was-meant-for-my-(imaginary)-girlfriend” Schijns did some turret surfing and cleared the obstruction. After rolling through the objective and the T80s closing in fast, 22A came in for the win and shot them both in the back, c-yah nerds!

    The remainder of the exercise passed by in a blur. 22B only got lost a couple of times, 22C never left the tank park, and 22A complete was sadly KIA when forced to remain stationary on an objective crawling with anti-tank teams and constant friendly artillery barrages. They will be missed, but the new and improved 22A clones have integrated fully into the Troop and completed the rest of the exercise. Overall, 2nd Troop learnt a lot, such as the proper use of the word concurrent, what life is like as a vehicle tech in the brigade supply area, the importance of constant stand-tos, and, most importantly, that love is a noose - words to live by.