Troops Head To California For Holiday Training

After undergoing exercises at Camp Shelby, members of the 212th and 155th say they're expecting a very different training environment at Fort Irwin, California.

Bill Glasgow of the 155th says, "We're doing what we call a mission rehearsal exercise. It's kind of a simulation of what we're facing in Iraq."

Justin Ray of the 212th Signal Battalion says, "It's a desert environment, similar to what we would see in several locations overseas. It exercises the unit movement plan, and it puts us in a more realistic environment than Camp Shelby."

The troops will spend Thanksgiving away from their families, but for some of them, that's nothing new.

"Several of us went on a Bosnia rotation and we're just doing what we have to do. But the families are doing real well. They're taking it well," says Glasgow.

Ray says, "We'll celebrate Thanksgiving, we just won't be with our families. We'll be with our military families out there at Fort Irwin."

The men and women will come home for Christmas before eventually deploying to Iraq.

The 212th from Arkansas is a communications support group for the Tupelo based 155th.