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Old 08-25-2015, 11:26 AM
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RickI RickI is offline
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Default A Look At The Army Combat Diving School, Key West

The facility is used for various training courses including the six-week Combat Diver Qualification Course. "The course, which is offered five times per year, sees about 36 to 42 soldiers per session. Prerequisites include having a specific military specialty such as being an Army Ranger, as well as passing a maritime assessment course, a 10-day test that is a mixture of land and pool measures, including surface swims."

"A typical day in the school is rigorous. Soldiers start around 4:30 a.m. prepping gear, then do about 90 minutes of physical training before eating breakfast and diving into four hours of training in the pool. After lunch, there are academic classes and surface swims in the afternoon. As the course progresses, soldiers get into night dives, which can last anywhere from 7 p.m. to midnight." "The six-week course includes open- and closed-circuit diving, pool exercises and time in the open water, which includes search dives and underwater navigation dives."

"“To drown-proof combat divers, we make them pass out underwater from lack of air,” said Master Sgt. Chuck Tandory, an instructor at the school. “Mentally, it’s the most important part of the SCUBA course. ‘I Can’t Breathe’ sums it all up.” I tried to find out a more detailed description of how this is done. It seems similar things may be done in special training for the SEALS and Marines which may involve the instructor holding the diver candidate underwater until he passes out.

A detailed account of the challenges the students go through in this intense course.

"This 50-foot free ascent dive tower is used by the Special Forces Underwater Operations School to conduct controlled infiltration and exfiltration exercises during the Combat Diver Qualification Course. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Candace Le)"

"Since World War II and into modern conflicts across the globe, divers have played an integral part in not only the military's war records, but also in the country's history.

"People in the [Ranger and Special Forces Regiments], they know they can go to that dive team or that combat diver, and they can get a solid product out of them, they can get success in a mission," said Col. Alan Shumate, a graduate of the Combat Diver Qualification Course and the son of one of the school's most revered founders, Sgt. Maj. Walter L. Shumate.

Leaders in the diving community hope that the newly crested dive tower will motivate future trainees during the rigorous six-week course and remind them of the lineage they will become a part of after completing the CDQC.

"It does suck, and there's a reason for it," Shumate said about the physical intensity of the course.

"You can't just fall out of a plane, pull your chute and be good," Shumate continued. "You've got to hold your breath and go subsurface and re-enter that sub or do whatever mission is given to you.""

More about Combat Diver Training along with references at:

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transcribed by:
Rick Iossi

Last edited by RickI; 08-25-2015 at 03:23 PM.
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