2010-05-13 / Local & State

Parachuters, Soldiers, Army Vehicles At Heritage Days

Former Army Rangers dropping from the sky and specialized combat vehicles are just some of the many unique pieces of U.S. Army history that will be featured at this year’s Army Heritage Days, May 15 and 16, 2010, at the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center (USAHEC) in Carlisle, Pa. This free and public event, the fourth annual, is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Due to the event’s immense popularity, organizers have extended the event to a second day over Armed Forces Day weekend.

While numerous activities are planned, highlights of the two-day program include:

More than 300 historical interpreters will highlight the heritage and history of the American soldier from colonial times until today. The activities include lectures, demonstrations of Civil War drill and tactics, a history of WWI soldiers in the trenches and an opportunity for some of the young men and women attending the event to go through a WWII-era basic training camp.

The Ranger Group Parachute Team, a group of professional parachutists and former Army Rangers and skydivers, will perform a high altitude jump on Saturday, May 15 at 11 a.m.

Soldiers who built and manned Vietnam-era gun trucks will exhibit these “land battleships” and discuss how they used them to protect Army convoys in Vietnam.

BAE Inc. from York, Pa., will exhibit and highlight the capabilities of the Bradley A3 fighting vehicle, the Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) 155mm Howitzer, M88A2 heavy recovery vehicle, and RG33 CATII mine resistant ambush protected (MRAP) vehicle that they construct and refurbish at their Pennsylvania facilities.

JLG from McConnellsburg, Pa., will display the Oshkosh Mine Resistant ambush protected (MRAP) all terrain vehicle (MATV) and an Army Atlas II telehandler that they construct and refurbish at their Pennsylvania facilities.

On Sunday, veterans of the WWII 44th bomb group will dedicate a monument to their unit and its members. The 44th was one of the most heavily decorated Army Air Corps units associated with the Ploesti raids. Col. Leon Johnson, commander of the 44th, was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions during the Raids.

Dr. Alan J. Russell of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine will present his lecture, “Our Science for Your Healing,” that describes the nation’s efforts to care for its seriously wounded veterans.

For more information about the event and a schedule of activities, visit the USAHEC Web site at www.usahec.org or call us at 717-245-3972.

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