From the Commanding General...

Sometimes writing these articles to talk about the future is like skeet shooting. One tries to fire in front of the clay pigeon hoping that there is enough “Kentucky windage” to have buck shot and disk collide in the same space at the same time. A perfect sequence of events, making the shooter look either good... or lucky... or both.

In the time between my writing this and you reading the winter edition of the Griffon, we will have had a Presidential election, several conferences at TRADOC, FORSCOM and USARC levels, the 108th Commander’s Conference as well as several meetings with the USARC G3/5/7 about future force structure; all future events that will have an impact of one sort or another on the 108th Training Command and... you. It is a little difficult to predict the outcomes or consequences of these events.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: From the Commanding General...,command, training, army, future, commanding, commanding general, 18th training

From the Command Sergeant Major...

Before and after my deployment to Afghanistan, I had the opportunity to participate in the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program. I recently completed my last event in a series of events that are provided to National Guard and Reserve Components. The series of events consist of a pre-deployment event, an event for the Families during deployment, demobilization and post-deployment. The Yellow Ribbon programs are tailored to assist Families in all phases of a deployment. When I deployed to Iraq in 2004 to 2005 there were no programs like the Yellow Ribbon program available to my Family or myself. With so many Reservists and National Guard deploying during that time, the military became aware of a need to provide resources for deployed Soldiers and their Families. As a result, the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program was created. The Army provides travel arrangements including flights and hotel reservations for each Family that attends. A lot of hard work goes into coordinating and providing resources for these events. The events I attended were conducted by the 81st RSC.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: From the Command Sergeant Major..., deployment, events, family, yellow ribbon, sergeant major, command sergeant, reintegration program, national guard, post deployment

3rd Brigade, 95th Division hosts Division Commanders/honors local WWII-era female Marine

RICHMOND, Ky. — Recently, 3rd Brigade, 95th Division, had the honor of hosting the 108th Training Command and 95th Division commanders during a commander’s conference from Aug. 23-26 at the Armed Forces Reserve Center. Maj. Gen. Robert P. Stall, commander, 108th Training Command (IET), and Brig. Gen. Arlen “Ray” Royalty, commander, 95th Training Division (IET), joined the 3rd Brigade commander, Col. Conrad “Buddy” Holbert who rolled out an initiative called “Leading Edge.”

Holbert explains further, “This conference was designed to review FY 2013 plans while providing an opportunity to discuss issues and develop countermeasures. Our brigade currently functions as both an operational force and a generating force, receiving missions from both USARC and TRADOC. Commanders at all levels must understand their command’s missions and determine their capabilities to support such missions.”

“In order to maintain its dual mission capability,” continued Holbert, “the command must maintain a high level of Soldier and unit readiness to be the ‘Leading Edge’ for the Army Reserve. To effectively manage this readiness, we implemented a systematic reporting process that objectively assesses Soldier and unit readiness as well as forecast mission capabilities. This will ensure we are doing our part to help the Army Reserve realize its 2020 Vision and Strategy Plan.”

Read More »

Relevant Tags: command, brigade, training, martin, 95th division, 3rd brigade, brigade 95th, training command, 18th training, wwii era, army reserve, female marine, command iet

Casing Ceremony for the 98th Training Division (IET)

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Soldiers, past and present, gathered at the Army Reserve Center to bid farewell to Headquarters, 98th Training Division (IET) at a casing ceremony on Sept. 8, 2012. The division has been serving the Army and community of Rochester since 1959.

In preparation for the move to Fort Benning, Ga., Brig. Gen. Dwayne Edwards, commanding general, 98th Training Division (IET), presided over the casing ceremony for the division colors. Col. Todd Arnold, chief of staff, 98th Training Division, narrated the ceremony and the commander of troops was Headquarters and Headquarter Company Commander, Maj. Don Montgomery.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: 98th, ceremony, casing, command, fort, training division, 98th training, fort benning, casing ceremony, division iet, army reserve, training command, 98th division, public affairs, master sgt

98th Iroquois Arrive at New Location Dedicated to WWII Chaplain

FORT BENNING, Ga. — After five-decades in upstate New York, the 98th Training Command (IET) will call the Fort Benning Armed Forces Reserve Center their new home. In addition to unfurling the 98th flag, the building was dedicated to a Catholic chaplain who served with distinction in the South Pacific during World War II, Lt. Col. Elmer Heindl.

Heindl was born in Rochester, N.Y. and ordained a priest in 1936. He was the assistant pastor at St. Andrew’s in N.Y., when he volunteered to join the Army in 1942. According to his biography, he wanted to counsel Soldiers, as he believed they needed spiritual guidance.

“He distinguished himself through his many acts of bravery during World War II,” said Maj. Gen. Gill P. Beck, commander, 81st Regional Support Command. “The former chaplain represented what is best about our Army, ‘The Army Values’. 

Read More »

Relevant Tags: heindl, division, chaplain, reserve, training command, 18th training, 98th training, armed forces, col elmer, reserve center, fort benning, new york

Driscoll takes command of 1st Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET)

COLUMBUS, Ga. — Col. Paul Driscoll assumed command of the 1st Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET) from Col. Chadwick Barklay at a ceremony here, Oct. 20, 2012.

Col. Loretta Thomas, deputy commander, 98th Training Division (IET) served as reviewing officer at the ceremony and Lt. Col. Otto Padron, executive officer, 1st Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET) served as Commander of Troops. Thomas praised Barklay, the outgoing commander for his leadership and for being and inspiration to all the Soldiers in the brigade.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: driscoll, iet, brigade, 98th, army, 1st brigade, training division, 98th training, command 1st, col paul, training command, paul driscoll, 18th training

2012 Best Warrior Competition begins at Fort Lee

FORT LEE, Va. (Oct. 15, 2012) — Twenty-four of the Army’s finest warriors converged here Sunday to engage in a fast-paced and intense battle against themselves and each other as participants of the premier Soldier skills competition.

The event, officially called the Department of the Army Soldier and Noncommissioned Officer of the Year Best Warrior Competition, known as Best Warrior, or BWC for short, brings together 12 noncommissioned officers, or NCOs, and 12 junior Soldiers from the Army’s major commands to demonstrate their proficiencies in skills critical to the success of every Soldier.

Best Warrior events include a physical training test, a board appearance, land navigation and a number of tasks deemed essential for survival on the battlefield, such as casualty evaluation and weapons marksmanship.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: army, competition, best warrior, fort lee, warrior competition, army reserve, noncommissioned officer, sergeant major

Three-event APFT retained pending baseline Soldier physical readiness study

FORT EUSTIS, Va. (Aug. 26, 2012) — The Army will retain the current three-event Army Physical Fitness Test, pending a study to determine the best method to measure baseline Soldier physical readiness.

U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command found that implementing changes to how the Army assesses physical fitness would be premature.

“We anticipate that the baseline Soldier physical readiness study, linked to Warrior Tasks and Battle Drills, may generate new information that affects how we develop and test physical fitness,” said TRADOC Command Sgt. Maj. Daniel A. Dailey.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: fitness, army, training, soldier, tradoc, physical readiness, soldier physical, baseline soldier, physical fitness, readiness training

Drill Sergeant + Leadership Experience = Unlimited Potential

FORT JACKSON, S.C. — During the Reserve Partnership Counsel (RPC), Master Sgt. Matthew C. Miller, command career counselor, 108th Training Command (IET), kept his audience engaged and asking questions. He focused on the drill sergeant mission by discussing his vision for the recruitment of drill sergeants from the possible 70,000 active component Soldiers reduction in forces.

“My mission is to give them a snapshot of us. What it means to become a drill sergeant or platoon leader,” said Miller. “I want to send out information monthly.”

As a drill sergeant, you can distinguish yourself from your peers while challenging yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally. Drill sergeants train Soldiers and make a difference in their lives.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: drill, sergeant, miller, reserve, drill sergeant, training command, career counselor, army reserve, master sgt, sgt matthew

Army tightens fitness standards for students entering professional military education

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Oct. 1, 2012) — Pre-war height, weight and physical fitness standards are coming back for Soldiers entering professional military education courses on or after Nov. 1.

The short explanation is: if you’re heavier than you should be, or you can’t meet the Army’s physical fitness standards, you’re not going to get into the professional military education, or PME, course you’re scheduled to attend.

The standards had been waived because the Army needed as many Soldiers as possible trained for the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts -- but that is no longer the case.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: army, education, fitness, standards, military, course, soldiers, training, physical fitness, professional military, military education, fitness standards, fitness test, army reserve, height weight

Soldier Raises Money to Support Veterans

MADISON, Wis. — Sgt. 1st Class Christopher A. Lanners, 4th Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) organized the Pantera Tribute Show on Aug. 18 to raise funds for Outward Bound, a program that helps returning veterans readjust to civilian life through wilderness expeditions.

The show that was held at the Regent Street Retreat in Madison took four months to plan. Admission was $5 and featured five bands, each playing at least one cover song from the band Pantera in tribute to its guitar player, “Dimebag Darrell” Abbott, who was murdered in 2004 by a former marine suffering from mental issues.

Lanners said, “All in all, we had a great turn out and raised over $1,000 for Outward Bound’s veteran program.”

Read More »

Relevant Tags: lanners, veterans, outward bound, christopher lanners, sgt 1st, 1st class, returning veterans, training division

WWII Veterans will Honor 95th Soldiers from Afghanistan Missions

World War II veterans have announced they will honor more than 500 “Victory Team” Soldiers at the 95th Division Association’s 64th reunion set for August 2013 in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

In December 2005, the 95th had its first overseas deployment as a unit since WWII. It was the beginning of a seven year mission mentoring and advising drill sergeants of the Afghan National Army (ANA). Soldiers, most who were U.S. Army Reserve Drill Sergeants, served as part of Embedded Training Teams, Mobile Training Teams and NATO Training Mission—Afghanistan. After ten iterations, the mission ended in 2012.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: soldiers, honor, veterans, training, afghanistan, 95th division, dallas/fort worth, 64th reunion, drill sergeants

4th Brigade, 98th Training Division welcomes new Commander

AMHERST, N.Y. — The 4th Brigade, 98th Training Division welcomed its new commander in a ceremony at the brigade headquarters Sept. 23.

Col. Keith Brelia relinquished his command to Col. Enrique Guerra during a brief ceremony in front of battalion command teams, Soldiers and Families.

Brelia knew before taking command of the brigade it would be as the interim commander, but he jumped at the opportunity and never looked back.

“I’m a light infantryman, and I was taught a long time ago that you never turn down an opportunity to command,” said Brelia. “It doesn’t matter what level you’re at, command is command. And, there is no better feeling than commanding a unit.”

Read More »

Relevant Tags: brigade, command, soldiers, division, unit, brelia, guerra, 4th brigade, 98th training, brigade 98th, new commander, command teams, brigade headquarters, army reserve

Wounded Warrior’s Wheelchair Basketball Camp

LAS VEGAS, Nev. — 1st Lt. Vernardo Harris, executive officer, D Co 1/415th, 95th Training Division (IET), was given another opportunity to play and teach basketball with the Air Force.

Harris was invited to the Air Force 2012 Wheelchair Basketball Camp at Nellis Air Force Base. He said it was a great opportunity to represent the Army Reserve and all Army Soldiers during the camp.

“Reservist don’t usually get this opportunity, especially the chance to help out the Air Force,” said Harris.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: basketball, harris, training, wheelchair, air force, wheelchair basketball, 95th training, basketball team, basketball camp, 1st vernardo, men’s basketball, training division, division iet

Strong Bonds: How to avoid falling for a jerk(ette)

NEW ORLEANS, La. — The message was simple — Don’t fall in love with a Jerk. And according to the strong bonds presenters, there are no easy answers on how to achieve this, but it pays to be on the lookout for the red flags that indicate a person is not relationship material.

Soldiers from across the 81st Regional Support Command (RSC) gathered at the Marriott Conference Center in historic New Orleans prepared to be armed with a new set of tools to help them feel more empowered to build stronger and more bonded relationships. The event’s atmosphere allowed attendees to reflect, refocus and to speak about ways relevant to creating and sustaining healthy relationships.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: strong, bonds, relationship, training, division, staff, strong bonds, staff sgt, bonds retreat, new orleans, avoid falling, andrea smith, sgt andrea, public affairs, 98th training

From the 95th Division Commander...

To members of the 95th Training Division team — I trust this finds your rucksack always close at hand in anticipation for the “On order, be prepared to ....” While the future across a global landscape appears unstable on any given day, our commitment to readiness requires diligence, focus, and vigilance — everyday. This is about attitude — taking the challenge — and standing firm when others run at the first sound of gunfire. An “equipment check” is in order everyday for each of us — mentally, physically, and spiritually.

The 95th Training Division Commander’s Conference conducted in Oklahoma City in September deserves the label of “success” at multiple levels. First, I want to thank members of the Division staff that worked diligently to bring this together — most excellent. Second, I want to thank each and every Command Team — Brigade and Battalion — that was present to actively participate in the open dialogue.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: From the 95th Division Commander..., office, commander, 95th training, training division, division commander, division team, training command, chief executive, 18th training

Mentoring Future Army Leaders and demonstrating the role of the Citizen Soldier

It’s mid July at Joint-Base Lewis McChord, and a cadet is going through the IED lane during the Leadership Development and Assessment Course, Operation Warrior Forge. A blast goes off and immediately a cadre member wearing a Timberwolf patch on his left shoulder tells a cadet, “You’re a casualty.” The other cadets quickly assess the injuries and perform first aid while the 104th Soldier evaluates the process and procedures. What is a US Army Reserve Soldier doing at the Active Duty Cadet Command training event?

Part of the 104th Training Division’s mission is to provide military education, reception, and training to future officers in support of United States Army Cadet Command’s (USACC) Senior Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) and the United States Military Academy.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: From the 104th Division Commander..., training, reserve, support, universities, usar, cadet, adjunct faculty, army reserve, citizen soldier, 14th division, active duty, role citizen, future army, assessment course, development assessment, military sc

Cache in your skills

The objective was less than 100 meters away, but there were too many civilians in the area to assault the objective. Stealth would be required to approach the cache. The hunter casually glanced at his GPS-enabled smartphone to get one last fix on his target. The cache was hidden in plain sight, but he would have to be at the exact coordinates to have any chance of locating the camouflaged container.

The target was a microcache, clandestinely hidden under a park bench. The seeker’s battle buddy had already fixed the position and was moving to contact. She took one last look around for observers and casually set down on the bench. Pretending to drop her bag, she reached down to pick it up and instead felt under the metal park bench. Her fingers brushed across what felt like a magnet key holder on the underside of the bench.

Her partner joined her on the bench as they pretended to engage in conversation. With eyes on the prize, she opened the key holder. All that was inside were coordinates to yet another cache. They still had work to do.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: geocaching, geocaches, terrain, caches, soldiers, hidden, land navigation, terrain ratings, use hobby

95th conducts STX

FORT MCCOY, Wis. — The 3/334, 4th Brigade, 95th Training Division (IET) conducted a Situational Training Exercise (STX) at Fort McCoy, Wis.

The training incorporated several of the Army Warrior Tasks (AWT) and battle drills including key leader engagement, reacting to unexploded ordinance (UXO) and improvised explosive devices (IED), reacting to contact, moving under direct fire, and conducting a casualty evacuation (CASEVAC).

The training was prefaced by a battalion level concept plan of operations providing each company with approximately 12 hours to prepare for their respective mission. Each STX scenario included local nationals as friendly elements and opposing forces (OPFOR).

Read More »

Relevant Tags: wis, mccoy, iet, fort, griffon, mccoy wis, division iet, fort mccoy, 95th training, brigade 95th, 4th brigade, exercise stx, situational training, training exercise

Drill Sergeants, United Blood Services unite to give back to Acadiana

LAFAYETTE, La. — The 1/378th Regiment, 98th Training Division (IET) teamed up with the United Blood Services on Saturday morning to host a community blood drive at their United States Army Reserve Center in Lafayette.

Through a combined effort, the blood mobile was able to collect 11 pints of blood that will be used in the future by local people in need.

“I gave blood because I want to help save lives,” said Spc. Tesa Cormier, a Soldier with the 1/378th Regt. “I know there are people out there counting on us to donate and I just wanted to do my part.”

Read More »

Relevant Tags: blood, division, united, army, training, services, office, united blood, blood services, army reserve, training division, division iet, 98th training, drill sergeants, reserve center

Plan for an uneventful winter

As we enter the winter months, here are some helpful safety tips for Soldiers, civilians and their Family members to ensure everyone has a safe and uneventful season. As the seasons change, so do the hazards. There are a significant number of safety challenges that can present themselves due to falling temperatures and increased holiday activities that can negatively impact you on road, around the house, and outdoors. Hopefully, the “best practices” highlighted here will assist you and your Family in keeping mayhem at bay. As winter approaches, it is important to prepare yourself, your vehicles, and your home for the extreme challenges the winter season can bring.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: winter, ensure, safety, fire, family, winter months, safety tips, uneventful winter, training command, change hazards, seasons change, ice snow


Greetings from the chaplain’s office.

As I enter my second year as the 108th Training Command AGR Chaplain, it’s hard to imagine how quickly the time has passed. Fall is here already. In view of this, I have some thoughts to share. Like all other sections in the command, the chaplain’s office is also dealing with change.

First, the deputy command chaplain’s position is filled by Chaplain (Maj.) Charles Phillips, who is no stranger to the command. He was the brigade chaplain at the 2nd Brigade, 98th Training Division (IET), before he transferred to take responsibility of the Engineer Command in Charleston, S.C. (his assignment before coming to our HQ).

Read More »

Relevant Tags: Chaplains Corner..., chaplain, change, office, training command, chaplain’s office, 18th training, agr chaplain, chaplain maj

Soldiers Gold Mine


Payment of Additional Training Assemblies (ATAs) for Electronic Based Distribution Learning (EBDL) Courses

Soldiers can now receive compensation for some distance learning (DL) courses they are required to take. Army Directive 2010-06 authorized compensation for the successful completion of electronic based distributed learning (EBDL) coursework. The 108th Training Command (IET) has reallocated some of its RMA funds to ATA funds for eligible EBDL courses. Here is who is eligible, how to request compensation and how to pay Soldiers that earn compensation.

First, commanders must direct, in writing, Soldiers to complete EBDL training, citing availability of funds. Soldiers in the grades of E1 to E6, W1 to W2 and O1 to O3 are eligible for this compensation. The courses must attain unit readiness and be listed on the approved course list in AR Pay Message 12-07. Soldiers must complete the course before receiving payment. Payment for partial completion is NOT authorized.

Soldiers will be compensated 1 ATA for every 8 hours of completed EBDL coursework but may not receive payment for more than 12 ATAs during the fiscal year (1 Oct - 30 Sep). RMAs cannot be used to compensate Soldiers for coursework if a Soldier uses all 12 ATAs during the fiscal year. Soldiers must attach a DA Form 87, certificate of completion, or ATRRS printout showing course completion to a DA Form 1380 and submit it to their unit administrators to receive compensation.

Unit administrators will pay ATAs using ADARS in the RM module of RLAS as drill type 41and input the ATA date using the date of course completion. They must use the dates immediately prior to the course completion date that do not conflict with other paid military duty if the Soldier earns multiple ATAs for completion of an approved course.

Soldiers may complete Commander approved EBDL course work at any location, including but not limited to US Army Reserve Centers, Digital Training Facilities, other public computer use facilities, and their residence. The effective date of this policy is 1 October 2012. Compensation for courses completed prior to 1 Oct 12 is not authorized.

Contact your unit administrator if you have any questions.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: Soldiers Gold Mine, soldiers, army, lodging, program, lik program, self development, ssd prerequisite, structured self, development ssd, gold mine, physical fitness, course completion

Transportation: Moving Soldiers From Transition to Careers

According to the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), each year 80,000 to 100,000 skilled soldiers will transition to civilian life. Other reports estimate one million military personnel will transition over the next four years, making the job market all the more competitive. In fact, today’s sluggish economy can make a job -- any job -- seem more important than a career path. Despite the slow recovery, there are industries that value the acquired skills of professional soldiers and offer them genuine opportunities.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES, transportation, transition, training, commercial, career, soldiers, civilian life, military personnel, commercial driving, transition careers, moving soldiers

Adjusting to civilian life after the transition

Returning to civilian life presents new opportunities as well as challenges for Veterans. Many Veterans look forward to life after the military, because they can spend more time with family and friends and no longer have to worry about military structure or being deployed. At the same time, transitioning to civilian life may lead to a lot of questions. You may wonder what you are going to do with this new phase of your life, or if you will be able to find a job. You may think about going back to school but not know where to start. Or, you may miss the order and discipline of military life compared to civilian life and wonder if you will be able to adjust.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: MILITARY TRANSITION RESOURCES, civilian, veterans, military, transition, transitioning, civilian life, vet center, military life, family friends

Homeschooling as a single parent:

Let’s face it: being a single parent intensifies the challenges of homeschooling.

In many two-parent homeschooling families, the dad takes primary responsibility for earning the living and the mom takes primary responsibility for educating the children. The labor is divided and the support is multiplied. Although there are also many two-parent families where both parents contribute to the education and the finances — often through a family business — a single parent is usually solely responsible for both. The labor is multiplied and the support is subtracted.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: HOMESCHOOL OPTIONS, single, children, homeschooling, parent, single parent, primary responsibility, single parents, homeschooling families

Sequoia’s 7th Annual Hero Appreciation Months

Every year, January through March, over 30 member businesses in Three Rivers, Sequoia National Park, and the surrounding gateway communities honor our current and former members of the Armed Forces and Veterans with 20 percent off thank you discounts for three months — and you can enjoy that discount for lodging, restaurants, services and products. A few exceptions/limitations apply.

To start the year out right, you might want to begin with the hilarious Polar Dip in the icy Kaweah River which takes place on Jan. 1 right outside the Gateway Restaurant and Lodge in Three Rivers. At the Gateway, two forks of the Kaweah River meet and flow beneath a classic bridge with triple arches built in the 1920s. After your plunge, enjoy some free hot clam chowder and cocoa, courtesy of the Gateway.

Take a drive along the Generals Highway into Sequoia National Park’s “Giant Forest,” park at the Giant Forest Museum, and join a Ranger-led snowshoe walk to see the huge cinnamon-colored trunks of the largest trees on earth rising above the snow.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, appreciation, hero, three rivers, hero appreciation, appreciation months, sequoia national, national park, 7th annual, rivers sequoia, annual hero

Unforgettable Family memories at Orlando

ORLANDO, Fla.— Imagine cheerful holiday music floating on the brisk air. Children marveling at giant, colorful balloons passing overhead. Laughter from the crowd as The Grinch and the Whos share their timeless story live on stage. Imagine families sharing the spirit of the season together, experiencing exciting rides and attractions. There’s no better place to be for the holidays this year than Universal Orlando Resort.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, holiday, orlando, universal, grinch, entertainment, universal orlando, memories orlando, universal studios, family memories, orlando resort, tree lighting

This holiday season spend wisely and give wildly at Tampa’s LOWRY PARK ZOO

When the mall becomes a zoo this holiday season, head to a real zoo — Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo — and embrace a Tampa tradition for the young and young at heart. When you visit the Zoo to have an enjoyable time, you are also supporting an organization committed to making a difference in the lives of animals in the world around us.

Each holiday season, Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo transforms into a whimsical world of holiday magic for Wild Wonderland, presented by Publix Super Markets Charities. Spread some seasonal cheer this year as you stroll through the zoo illuminated with holiday lights, sights and sounds on select nights — Dec. 8, 14-23 and 26-30 from 6:30-10 p.m.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, zoo, holiday, lowry, park, season, tampa’s, lowry park, park zoo, holiday season, wild wonderland

Lots to do in Pooler, Georgia

If you’re ready for a change, then come to Pooler, home of the Savannah Tire Flyin’ Pig BBQ and Music Festival, Cooler in Pooler Resolution 5K and!5K, the Daniel Defense Run, the Mighty Eighth Air Force Museum (which has its roots to the Army Air Corps in WWII), Disc Golf Tournament, and more. Pooler is a great place to visit and your wallet will enjoy the savings, too.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, pooler, air, army, military, air force, eighth air, force museum, mighty eighth, military discounts, pooler georgia, army airfield, army air

Garrett County, home of state’s largest lake

With an abundance of winter recreational activities and beautiful natural scenery, Garrett County, Maryland offers the perfect destination to find your next adventure or just find your relaxation. Skiing, snowboarding, snow tubing, snowmobiling, or simply curling up by the fire — the area’s natural beauty is the perfect destination whether you seek winter days full of activities or just plain relaxing.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, lake, creek, winter, snow, garrett county, creek lake, lake area, wisp resort, county home, snow tubing

Enjoy history and culture in Putnam County, NY

Size doesn’t matter — especially when it comes to choosing a place for some well-deserved R&R. Putnam, the second smallest county in New York, offers as much as any larger county when it comes to outdoor recreation, historical sites and cultural events to enjoy. Visitors arrive easily by train at Metro-North Railroad stations in Cold Spring, Garrison, Brewster, Southeast and Patterson or by car via I-84 and the Taconic State Parkway. Putnam County, a mere 60 miles north of Manhattan, is directly across the Hudson River from the United States Military Academy at West Point. What better place for military personnel and their families to enjoy a day trip or vacation?

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, putnam, park, history, putnam county, cold spring, state park, history culture, culture putnam

Discover Missouri’s hometown

We know your vacation time is valuable and important to you. Joplin, Missouri has a long and rich history of being that community which takes care of others. From the early days as a mining town, Joplin was where the miners came to spend their paychecks and relax while having a good time. Joplin was not as dramatic as the Wild Wild West, but at the Joplin Historical Museum you will hear the tales and folklore of many colorful citizens, past and present. While there, in the TriState Mineral Wing of the museum you will see some of the world’s largest and best kept specimen of zinc, lead and quartz.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, joplin, office, missouri, missouri’s hometown, town joplin, mining town

Snowshoe Mountain, West Virginia

The John Denver song, Country Roads, starts with the line “Almost Heaven West Virginia,” but there is perhaps nowhere in the state closer to Heaven than Snowshoe Mountain. With a 4,848 foot summit elevation it is the highest resort in the state. It is usually the first area south of the Mason-Dixon Line to have natural snowfall each season, and totals over 180 inches most seasons. The trails are challenging, and there are many activities on the slopes and in the Village, in addition to skiing and snowboarding.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL SKI, snowshoe, mountain, virginia, terrain, creek, ski, west virginia, silver creek, snowshoe mountain, western territory, highest resort, resort state

Ski the North Carolina mountains

Ski resorts in North Carolina resemble ski resorts on the west coast more closely than they do the blustery ski mountains of New England and some other spots along the Atlantic seaboard. Nevertheless, weather conditions for ski resorts in North Carolina will still be incredibly cold throughout the winter and often quite windy. For many ski enthusiasts, the mostly exciting terrain is worth braving the cold weather, however, and the North Carolina ski vacations are quite popular throughout the southeast.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL SKI, ski, mountain, resort, mountains, skiing, appalachian, north carolina, carolina ski, ski resorts, sugar mountain, ski mountain, appalachian ski, banner elk

Ice sculptures, chocolate tasting and polar bear plunge

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing country getaway for two, or an adventure-filled vacation for the whole family, consider the Central PA’s Susquehanna River Valley, This winter.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, winter, ice, river, family, sculptures, historic, susquehanna, susquehanna river, polar bear, bear plunge, ice sculptures, tasting polar, river valley, art deco, chocolate tasting

Winter anyone?

Believe it or not — winter is here. It is hard to imagine since we have felt temperatures in the 60s and 70s throughout most of fall, but according to the Farmers Almanac, we are in for the coldest winter in years . . . with snow. Columbia and Montour counties offer a wide variety of outdoor adventures in the snow. So brush off those cabin fever blues, get out of the house and DO SOMETHING! Here are our recommendations:

PPL’s Montour Preserve

Located just north of Danville in Washingtonville, Montour Preserve offers a variety of outdoor activities throughout the year. During the winter months, hikers turn in their boots for cross-country skis or snowshoes and explore the Preserve’s Chilisuagi, Goose Woods and Wildlife Management trails. Of course, trails are open as weather and snow permits.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, winter, montour, columbia, trails, located, visitors, snow, montour counties, cross country, game lands, country skiing, montour visitors, ice fishing, montour preserve, state game

Military R&R in Bryan-College Station

As a community known for honoring the military and those who have served our country, Bryan-College Station offers a worthy spot for rest and relaxation away from the hustle and bustle of the big city. Because Bryan-College Station is conveniently located between Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas, an event-filled trip to Aggieland can be made within a day. It is home to the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum, and Texas A&M University, two institutions that hold a special fondness and respect for the military.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, military, college, bush, bryan, museum, george, college station, bryan college, george bush, library museum

Front Royal, a town for all seasons

Are the mountains calling you? The perfect place to enjoy a combination of small town charm and natural splendor is in Front Royal, Virginia. A mere 66 miles to the west of Washington D.C. you will find our town with its ability to make anyone feel local as soon as they arrive. With annual events, outdoor recreation, Civil War history, wineries, shopping, dining and interesting places to stay — Front Royal offers the best of the Shenandoah Valley and a little something for everyone.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, town, shenandoah, park, front royal, shenandoah national, national park, royal town, trickling streams

Get a better view of history in Winchester-Frederick County, VA

Located along I-81 at the top of Virginia, Winchester-Frederick County is only 70 miles NW of Washington, DC, 130 miles SW of Baltimore, and just minutes from the famous Skyline Drive and the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Read More »

Relevant Tags: TRAVEL USA, winchester, frederick, washington, history, cline, patsy, frederick county, winchester frederick, patsy cline, shenandoah valley, ridge mountains, blue ridge, george washington

Supporting the Homeschool Community

The Home School Foundation is a nationwide organization whose mission is to bless homeschool families and further the cause of homeschooling.


Read More »

Relevant Tags: Article

Veterans Green Jobs and GRID Alternatives Spark Partnership

DENVER, February 13, 2013 – Veterans Green Jobs, a nonprofit organization that puts veterans to work in the green economic sector, is launching a partnership with GRID Alternatives, an Oakland, Calif.-based nonprofit solar installer. Through this partnership, the two organizations will advance training and employment opportunities for military veterans in the clean energy field nationwide. Read More »

Relevant Tags: Article

The Griffon Vol. 36.4 (Winter 2012)

The Griffon Vol. 36.4 (Winter 2012)
View Issue (page flip)
Download this Issue (PDF)

The 108th Training Command got its start as part of an elaborate deception prior to Operation Overlord, the D-Day Invasion of France in World War II. The Division was a "phantom" division created on paper and assigned to the First United States Army Group under the command of General George Patton. We were the original Institutional Training (IT) Division and remain one of seven training divisions for the Army, Army Reserve and National Guard. The Griffon is in its 30th publishing year as an award-winning authorized publication written in the interest of the men and women of the 108th Training Command.

  • The Griffon is written and published quarterly in the interest of the 108th National Training Command. It is shipped directly to member's homes and to Training Command bases throughout the U.S.
  • The Griffon is regularly recognized by the Pentagon with their highest rating of Four Stars as one of the largest and most informative authorized publications in the Army.
  • Our members use The Griffon for prescreened, approved resources and opportunities for themselves and their families.
  • The Griffon is required reading material with a message straight from the General.