Finishing up at Fort Hood

The focus of the past week was our culminating CPX (Command Post Exercise). We moved into a large TOC (Tactical Operations Center), where we all had computers in front of a large central screen and smaller side screens (a budget version of NASA’s Mission Control).  Over the course of several days, we were given different “injects,” or scenarios and situations, to react to. Mine involved Red Cross messages about family problems at home, counseling situations where role-players approached me speaking of suicidal ideation or sexual assault. Most were not issues for me to handle alone, but were situations requiring different staff sections to work with me, working through various “Battle Drills.” My big event was to prepare a Memorial Ceremony. A soldier (notionally) had an accident and was taken to the  hospital at another base, where he died. The XO and S3 (operations) pulled the staff to talk about different rolls. I had to brief the next day the SOP for preparing and conducting a Memorial Ceremony, then, the following day, we rehearsed it, and finally, yesterday, we had a dress rehearsal and we conducted the ceremony with several of our observer/controllers in attendance. They thought we did very well (I hope to post some pictures soon).

Today was a slower, relaxed day (after a lot of very early morning phone calls). I found out that 1/133 FA (from my last brigade, the 72d IBCT) was here at North Fort Hood, so I went looking for them, and had some nice visits with some friends.

Tomorrow is my last Sunday at  North Fort Hood chapel. The musicians are just arriving now for rehearsal for the 0900 service, at which I will be preaching on St. Patrick. I’ll also be doing the 0800 Liturgical Protestant Service.