House Creek students learn safety from local heroes
By ASHLEY LEAGUE
Special to Leader-Press
They are America’s fighting force. Military men and women are trained to keep America safe, but how do they keep themselves safe? That was the question that House Creek Elementary students asked soldiers and one local hero visiting their school.
Facing dangerous situations daily, Copperas Cove Police Officer Cory Fieseler and members of House Creek Elementary School’s adopted military unit, the 79th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Battalion, took time out of their busy schedules to teach students about their safety gear and technology that keep them safe on the battlefield and on the streets.
Fieseler, a former soldier of the 79th battalion Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit and current police officer, explained his daily tasks on the force. He demonstrated with members of the Special Weapons and Tactics team how they safely enter a house using their shields while wearing bulletproof vests.
Student James Kirkham was excited to see and explore the gear the officers wear.
“I liked their shield because it was big,” Kirkham said. “I also liked their armor because it was really cool.”
The soldiers shared how much they rely on and use technology in their jobs, from walkie-talkies to helmets. Students including Lily Hedge and Lindsay Bunn were surprised when a robot was introduced on stage and the soldiers geared up in their bomb suits.
The unit members showed students how the robot is controlled by a remote and picks things up to keep the soldiers safe. It also has a built-in x-ray machine to see through objects and uses cameras to transmit information to a computer for them to see.
“I enjoyed seeing all of their tools and I really liked the robot because it was able to see through the cameras to find stuff that might hurt us,” Hedge said.
The students listened intently as the soldiers explained that their bomb suits weigh 70 pounds each and that even with the full body suit, the robot helps keep them safe by showing them things they may otherwise not see.
“I liked the robot because it had cameras and that was cool because it could see stuff and we could see it on the screen with them,” Bunn said.