Florida Guard unit trains at Shelby for first time since 2005

Florida National Guard brigade returns to Camp Shelby

CAMP SHELBY, MS (WDAM) - A Florida National Guard unit that mobilized at Camp Shelby for service in the Middle East 14 years ago is back to train for another potential deployment.

The 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team is participating in an XCTC (Exportable Combat Training Capability) exercise.

It’s an important step in preparing for a possible new mission.

In 2005, the most of the unit mobilized at Camp Shelby before deploying to Afghanistan.

“The infantry is always the front line troops, so if you don’t actually practice your craft in the field, then you’re not going to be effective when the nation calls on us to actually do our job overseas,” said Capt. Michael Zorrilla, commanding officer of Company B, of the first battalion of the 124th Infantry Regiment.

That unit is a part of the 53rd IBCT.

Tuesday, soldiers in the 1/124th were preparing for a live-fire squad attack exercise Wednesday.

Next summer, the 53rd will train at the Joint Readiness Training Center at Fort Polk, Louisiana, and will then be ready for deployment, if needed.

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