The White Sands Missile Range community came out to welcome the newest members, the 3-6 ADA Battalion Patriot Test Detachment, to the community during an activation ceremony at Volunteer Park Dec. 8.
Lt. Col. L. Chris Matthews, the Battalion Commander for the 3rd Battalion 6th Air Defense Artillery, thanked WSMR for their warm welcome.
“A special thanks to the White Sands community for welcoming the members of the test detachment with open arms and making the transition of standing up the unit a smooth one. We look forward to strengthening our relationship and building strong teams,” Matthews said.
Matthews said the ADA branch has always understood how critical developmental and operational testing is to success.
“The creation of the test detachment ensures that we can continue to have the end user, a Soldier’s expertise and input, at the forefront of the development of air defense systems. Projected to stand 35 service members strong, the detachment will be comprised of the best and brightest tacticians and technicians the branch has to offer. The branch couldn’t have selected a more qualified, competent and confident command team. They are mission oriented people, focused and have already made their impact felt here at White Sands,” he said.
The mission of the test detachment, is to provide expertise and knowledge in support of air and missile programs, conduct developmental tests, flight tests, and tactics, techniques and procedures development in preparation for the Directorate of Testing and Evaluation and the Army Test and Evaluation Command operational tests.
“As enemies improve and enhance their lethality and inventory of aerial threats…the branch is rapidly adapting our current weapon systems and developing future systems to increase the air defense capability,” Matthews said. “And so, we turn a new page in the history books with the activation of the Diamondback test detachment. This unit promises to write a rich history.”
Detachment Commander Capt. Michael A. Woodhouse said the opportunities these Soldiers will have to test the latest technologies are second to none.
He thanked the White Sands Missile Range community for welcoming them with open arms and helping to make the transition seamless.
“I truly hope the relationships this unit holds within the installation and with the test community continues to grow even stronger with time,” Woodhouse said.
To the Diamondbacks, he said the formation will continue to grow in time, not only in size, but also in knowledge, discipline and subject matter expertise. “I truly look forward to serving with all of you. First to fire, always on target, bruiser nation, test the limits, Diamondback six signing in.”