Major General Ray Shields, the Adjutant General for the State of New York, announces the recent promotion of members of the New York Army National Guard in recognition of their capability for additional responsibility and leadership.

Maximilian Akers from Morrisville and assigned to the Forward Support Company, 204th Engineer Battalion, received a promotion to the rank of private 1st class Aug.10, 2021.

Army National Guard promotions are based on overall performance, attitude, leadership ability, and development potential.

These promotions additionally recognize the best qualified Soldiers and attract and retain the highest caliber Citizen Soldiers for a career in the New York Army National Guard.

For more information about the New York Army National Guard, visit dmna.ny.gov or 1800goguard.com

The New York National Guard (New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs) is the state’s executive agency responsible to the Governor for managing New York’s Military Forces, which consists of nearly 20,000 members of the New York Army National Guard, the New York Air National Guard, the New York Naval Militia and the New York Guard.

New York Air Guard Tech. Sgt. Paul Cange, a Syracuse resident, will represent U.S. at Brazilian Jungle Warfare Training Center international class

Cange, who is stationed at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base is attending the course as part of the New York National Guard training exchange program with Brazil

New York Air National Guard Technical Sgt. Paul Cange, a Syracuse resident and 14-year veteran of the Air National Guard, is headed to Brazil at the end of September to attend the Brazilian Army’s Jungle Warfare Training Center.

Cange, a member of the 274th Air Support Operation Squadron at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, is attending the special six-week long school the center puts on for international students.

Known as CIGS, the acronym for its Portuguese name — Centro de Instrucao de Guerra na Selva-the school was founded in 1964. Located in Manas, the capital of Brazil’s Amazonas state, the school is considered the top jungle training center in the world.

The school runs a six-week long international course for Soldiers from other countries. Highly trained special operations soldiers typically attend this class. The class starts at the end of September.

The classes focus on navigating in the jungle, jungle tactics, and lots of swimming while learning to use rivers as travel routes in the jungle.

Those who pass the course are awarded a special knife called the “facao, de mateo” a Brazilian version of the Bowie knife with a jaguar headed handle made specifically for the jungle warfare center.

Cange is attending as part of the New York National Guard’s exchange program with the Brazilian military under the National Guard’s State Partnership Program.

The partnership programs pairs state National Guard’s with the militaries of developing or former Warsaw Pact countries in training partnerships.

New York has had a partnership with Brazil since 2019. In August Air National Guard rescue teams from the 106th Rescue Wing based in Westhampton Beach, took part in a Brazilian Air Force exercise call Exercise Tapio.

New York sent an Army National Guard Soldier to the tough, demanding class in 2019, and an Air Guardsman completed course in 2020.

Cange is one of two New York National Guard members attending the class this year.

New York Army Corporal Dakoatah Miller, a Cortland resident, will also attend the class. Miller finished second in the nationwide Army National Guard Best Warrior competition held in August.

Cange was picked to attend the Brazilian school because “he has demonstrated the mental toughness and physical stamina to complete this course, “according to Commander Chief Master Sgt. Denny Richardson.

Richardson, the senior ranking Airman in the New York Air National Guard, added that Cange is “a natural leader”.

“When faced with adversity he has the ability to access the situation quickly, make sound decisions, implement and lead,” Richardson said.

Cange is an Air Force special warfare joint terminal attack controller.

He is trained to deploy with infantry and Special Forces elements, and call in air strikes using high-tech equipment.

In 2019 he deployed to Kandahar, Afghanistan for nine months in support of units operating there.

He is currently a joint terminal attack controller instructor and has been a full-time National Guard member for four years.

Cange said he’s looking forward to the rigorous training.

“It is an opportunity that does not get offered to everybody,” he said. “Having an opportunity to work with our partner forces, it is important.”

He was notified in February to plan to attend the school and has been working out rigorously to get in shape, Cange said.

He’s spoken to the New York National Guard members who attended the course in 2019 and 2020 as part of that preparation. Cange said.

At age 37, he knows he will be older than many of the other international Soldiers, but he believes he is fit enough Cange said.

The course emphasizes using rivers for movement, so he has been working on swimming, Cange said.

“I would definitely say that I am not an expert swimmer, but I have confidence to be in the water,” he said.

Learning the other skills the school focuses on – jungle navigation and tactics–will enable him to do a better job of preparing other Air Force forward air controllers to support American forces in the field, he said.

Going to a tough military school is nothing new for Cange. He is a graduate of the Army’s Airborne and Air Assault Schools, as well as the Mountain Warfare School conducted by the Vermont National Guard in the Green Mountains.

His wife, Lee-Angela and sons Paul and Porter, are used to him going away on duty and have been very supportive of this opportunity, Cange said.

New York National Guard Cpl Dakoatah Miller, a Cortland resident, will train a Brazilian Jungle Warfare Training Center

New York Army National Guard Corporal Dakoatah Miller takes a break during the Army National Guard Best Warrior competition in Arizona earlier this year. Miller, a Cortland resident, will be attending the special international students class at the Brazilian Jungle Warfare Training Center in October and November.

Army National Guard Soldier will attend world-famous jungle training center as part of New York’s State Partnership Program with Brazil

New York Army National Guard Corporal Dakoatah Miller, a Cortland resident who finished second in the Army National Guard’s nationwide Best Warrior competition in July, is now heading to Brazil to attend the Brazilian Army’s world-standard jungle warfare training school.

Miller, a member of the 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry, will spend six weeks at the Brazilian Jungle Warfare Training Center in Manas, the capitol of Brazil’s Amazonas state. The course begins at the end of September.

The school, known as CIGS, the acronym for its Portuguese name — Centro de Instrucao de Guerra na Selva-was founded in 1964, and is considered the top jungle training center in the world.

The school runs a six-week long international course for Soldiers from other countries. Highly trained special operations Soldiers typically attend this class.

The classes focus on navigating in the jungle, jungle tactics, and lots of swimming while learning to use rivers as travel routes in the jungle.

Those who pass the course are awarded a special knife called the “facao, de mateo” a Brazilian version of the Bowie knife with a jaguar headed handle made specifically for the jungle warfare center.

“I have prepared as best as I can for the school,” Miller said. “I am going to go down and give it my best.”

He has been making an effort to do more swimming, Miller said. Previous New York National Guard attendees he spoke with emphasized what a big part swimming plays during the training, he explained.

Miller is attending the course as part of the New York National Guard’s State Partnership Program with the Brazilian military.

The partnership programs pairs state National Guard’s with the militaries of around the globe in developing training partnerships.

New York has had a partnership with Brazil since 2019. In August, Air National Guard rescue teams from the 106th Rescue Wing based in Westhampton Beach, took part in a Brazilian Air Force exercise called Exercise Tapio.

New York sent an Army National Guard Soldier to the tough, demanding class in 2019, and an Air Guardsman completed course in 2020.

This year, two New York National Guard members will participate in the training. New York Air National Guard Technical Sgt. Paul Cange, from Syracuse, N.Y. and a member of the 274th Air Support Operations Squadron, will also be attending the school.

Miller was selected for this opportunity because of his demonstrated capabilities already displayed in regional and national Best Warrior events, according to Command Sgt. Major David Piwowarski, the senior enlisted leader in the New York Army National Guard.

“The preparation and dedication it takes to consistently win, demonstrates his ability to stay mission focused despite distractions like fatigue and hunger,” Piwowarski said.

“All of this, plus his infantry training at his unit as well as his personal mental toughness will ensure that he not only completes the Brazilian jungle warfare course, but that he excels there,” he added.

Miller said he expects the biggest challenge in the jungle will be the humidity. The Army National Guard Best Warrior competition took place in Arizona so the Amazon jungle is about as different as you can get, Miller said.

He and Tech. Sgt. Canga plan to get together before the course starts so they can compare notes, Miller said.

When he returns from the Brazilian school he plans to attend the Army’s Ranger School in January, Miller said.

The two month course involves training at Fort Benning, Georgia; military mountaineering in northern Georgia, and operations in Florida’s swamps.

He also hopes to attend the Army’s Mountain Warfare School in Vermont next year, Miller said.

By martha

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