August 28, 2005
By Maj. Cotton Puryear
Supporting the Boy Scout Jamboree at Fort A.P. Hill from July 25 to Aug. 3 provided opportunities for military police Soldiers from the 229th MP Company to put some newly acquired skills to use. Soldiers from the Virginia Guard performed a variety of support missions for the 10-day event, including running traffic control points and patrolling the Jamboree areas for security and safety assistance.
“Since we graduated in February and went to a National Guard unit, we didn’t expect to get much in the way of garrison duty,” said Pfc. Kyle Danzey. “Since we have been here at the Jamboree, we have been working garrison duty, so we are getting a chance to do traffic stops and helping with assisting with heat causalities.”
Danzey and several of his fellow Soldiers just graduated from their Advanced Individual Training class at Fort Leonard Wood in February.
Danzey explained that often National Guard military police units perform more field-type missions like convoy security, but don’t always get the chance to perform garrison duty like traffic control. They also performed walking patrols throughout the Jamboree area and helped provide assistance to those that became heat causalities.
Talking with the Boy Scouts was one of the highlights of the tour of duty, according to Spc. Alonzo Chandler “I had never seen the Scouts in this capacity,” Chandler said. “Seeing the kind of things they are learning has inspired me to try and get some of my eight nephews into the Scouts.”
Chandler said that morale amongst the Soldiers in the unit was elevated from the beginning. “A lot of us were skeptical of this mission and didn’t know what to expect,” he said. “I thought I might be arresting a couple of them. On the first day they were kind of scared, now they come up and ask what we do. They have really opened up and interacted with us.”
Soldiers of the 299th also put their skills to the test during a real-world emergency. When four Scout leaders were electrocuted while putting up a tent, Danzey was part of the group of first responders that arrived on the scene.
“We assisted the Department of Defense police in setting up a security perimeter,” Danzey said. “At first I thought it was a drill, because we had been practicing for that sort of thing. But when I got there, I realized it was the real thing. It was hard are first, because I had never responded to a situation where people had actually been injured, but you have to get yourself together and get composed to handle the situation.”