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New commander tapped for Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade

Cars leave the Fort Benning main gate onto Fort Benning Drive Tuesday.  10.01.13
Cars leave the Fort Benning main gate onto Fort Benning Drive Tuesday. 10.01.13 rtrimarchi@ledger-enquirer.com

Col. David G. Fivecoat, the lead writer and editor of the field manual, “Tactics in Counterinsurgency,” assumes command of the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade during a Thursday change of command ceremony at Fort Benning.

Fivecoat takes over duties from Col. Kyle E. Lear, the first commander of the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade. He has been reassigned to the 8th U.S. Army in Korea to serve as an operations officer.

The brigade was merged under one unit this year as part of reorganization at the Maneuver Center of Excellence. The ceremony is at 9 a.m. at the Ranger demonstration area on Hurley Hill in Harmony Church.

Maj. Gen. H.R. McMaster, commander at the Maneuver Center, recognized the efforts of both officers in a statement. “Col. Lear is an extraordinary leader who built on the tremendous legacy of excellence of our Ranger Training Brigade and the 1-507th Parachute Infantry Battalion,” McMaster said. “As the first commander of the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade, his vision has ensured that our Army will remain ready to respond rapidly to crises, fight and win.”

McMaster described Fivecoat as no better officer to build on the achievements of the Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade.

Lear has served at Fort Benning since June 2012. He has spent almost half of his career at Fort Benning, including time with the 75th Ranger Regiment.

Fivecoat is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He also earned two master’s degrees, one in Military Arts and Science from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and another in National Security Strategy from the National War College.

During his 21 years of service, Fivecoat has served three tours in Iraq, one in Afghanistan as commander of the 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division and counterinsurgency operations in Kosovo and Bosnia. His duties have been in infantry, airborne, air assault, armor and mechanized units.

In addition to writing the field manual, Fivecoat has had articles published in Infantry Magazine, Armor Magazine, Fires Bulletin, Military Review and Parameters.

Some of Fivecoats’s awards and decorations include the Valorous Unit Award, four Bronze Star medals and the Army Commendation Medal with V Device. He is Ranger qualified, a Master Parachutist, earned the Combat Infantryman’s Badge and other awards.

Airborne and Ranger Training Brigade trains elite soldiers into leaders during a grueling nine-week course. After graduation, they can execute diverse missions in a variety of challenges on difficult terrain. The brigade also conducts training for the Basic Airborne, Pathfinder and Jumpmaster courses.

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