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Buffalo vs. New England Rivalry on Hold 
26th Signal Company completes assembly of the Very Small Aperture Terminal  
Spc. Toni Robinson of the 26th Signal Company completes assembly of the Very Small Aperture Terminal as soldiers of the 26th Signal Company from Hudson, Mass. and the 27th BSTB from Buffalo, N.Y., assist and observe. (U.S. Army Photo by 2nd Lt. Doug Richardson, 26th Signal Company)
By Chief Warrant Officer 2 George F. Young, Massachusetts National Guard 

, N.Y. – Who says that Buffalo and New England can’t get along? Tom Brady wasn’t there to help out when the 26th Signal Company of Hudson, Mass. and the 27th Brigade Special Troops Battalion from Buffalo, N.Y. met in the field.

The 26th Signal Company traveled to New York on a training mission from April 29, 2009 to May 3, 2009. They got together with the 27th BSTB for Joint Network Node and Satellite Transportable Terminal training. The mission was essential because the 26th Signal Company doesn’t have the JNN or the STT. “There is no other place close to Massachusetts to get hands on training like this, we had to seek out our neighbors for assistance,” said 1st Sgt. Thomas Groulx.

The journey almost didn’t get off the ground when the bus broke down before they started. It was then an eight hour bus ride to Buffalo. That night cots were issued and the Soldiers got a good night of rest.

Day one began with physical training and a hot shower. After a thirty minute ride to the training site in Ransomville, N.Y., the rest of the morning was used to set up six shelters and tents for sleeping quarters. Day one through three was spent learning about the JNN and other satellite equipment.

Trainers from the 27th BSTB taught classes on the components of the JNN, the Satellite Transportable Terminal and the Very Small Aperture Terminal. Soldiers from both units participated in the training.

To make things even, Soldiers from the 26th Signal Company taught classes on the Secure Mobile Anti-Jam Reliable Tactical Terminal for Soldiers of the 27th BSTB and members of the 42d Infantry Division. This worked out well for the 26th Signal Company, since the terminals were already on site.

After three good days of training, the 26th Signal Company said goodbye to their new friends in Buffalo and headed back to home station in Hudson. The training mission was a success for both units who are responsible for communications in and out of “theatre of operations” when deployed.

While the Army is still issuing the new JNN equipment to all communications units across the country, this joint exercise proved that different units can successfully work together. There may still be a rivalry on the football field, but on the battle field we’re all on the same team.