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A Head Start in Tactical Law Enforcement: The Combat Arms Team

by Stefanie Senkow
December 12, 2018

A Head Start in Tactical Law Enforcement: The Combat Arms TeamNEW LONDON, Conn. -- Sweating and shooting. For the Coast Guard Academy’s Combat Arms Team, the workouts are rigorous and the weapons training intense; but for the cadets involved, the skills they acquire give them a head start in pursuing a promising career in Coast Guard tactical law enforcement.

“The Combat Arms Team helps train and prepare cadets for future careers in Maritime Law Enforcement, whether the missions be counter narcotics or counter terrorism,” said LT. Tony Gregg, the team’s advisor.

Coast Guard Law enforcement missions include fisheries enforcement, immigration, counter narcotics, and counter terrorism. For First Class Cadet (1/c) Philip Kuong and Second Class Cadet (2/c) Patrick Wheeler, their involvement in the Combat Arms Team will help them get that much closer to that career goal.

“We both have an interest in the Coast Guard’s Maritime Security Response Team (MSRT) , which is the Service’s premier counterterrorism unit” said 1/c Kuong, Combat Arms Team Captain.

The team’s weekly schedule is both physically and mentally demanding. In addition to comprehensive fitness routines comprised of CrossFit style, high intensity, explosive interval workouts, strength conditioning and cardio endurance scattered throughout the week; the team also practices tactical shooting and weapons handling through live fire and dry fire drills.

“We’re not only learning the technical aspects of combat shooting but we’re also learning how to perform under pressure which is essentially what boarding officers are faced with during their missions,” said 1/c Kuong. “We’re also enhancing our leadership capabilities and building our competency to become tactical boarding officers one day.”

Until the cadets reach their eventual career goals, the Combat Arms Team continues to forge ahead at the Academy, engaging in competitions. This past spring, the team won a victory over the Naval Academy at the all-service academy championship, “SIG SAUER Relentless Warrior Challenge” in Epping, New Hampshire.