Kentucky hosts ‘Warrior Week’; great success for Guardsmen and Ecuadorian counterparts
Story and photos by Spc. Scott Raper/133rd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
RICHMOND, Ky. (June 11, 2010)– Cadets from Eastern Kentucky University, University of Kentucky and the country of Ecuador participated in a joint exercise called Warrior Week at Bluegrass Army Depot May 10-14 in Richmond, Ky.
For the first time in the 17-year history of the State Partnership Program with Ecuador, cadets from an Ecuadorian Military School traveled to the Commonwealth of Kentucky to train alongside their American counterparts.
While sharing the common goal of becoming an officer, the Ecuadorians and Americans both honed their skills as leaders during the five day event.
Warrior Week provided cadets the opportunity to further their leadership education with subject matter expert exchange in land navigation, squad tactical exercise lanes and the field leadership reaction course.
With training very similar to the United States Military, the nine Ecuadorian cadets were anxious to be included in the activities and proved to be up for any task. Their presence provided a “real-world” subject matter exchange environment for the Kentucky cadets, just like with the numerous foreign allies operating side by side with the US around the world.
Capt. Brad Copas, the Traditional Commander’s Activities Director in Quito, Ecuador said the purpose of the exchange is to familiarize Ecuador with American culture and the American Soldier.
“We like to expose them to training with American Soldiers, specifically Kentucky Guardsmen to build a relationship that will last; a trust and a bond that they can work build together and realize they are more alike than they are different,” Copas said.