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You are here:  HOME  >  What's New  >  Special assignment: The Vancouver Olympics
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Special assignment:
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Special assignment: The Vancouver Olympics

 
Navy Lieutenant Matt D. Beery
LT Matt D. Beery, MSC, USN,
on special assignment
Bethesda, Md., March 10, 2010—While the world was watching the recent Winter Olympics, neither the fans nor the athletes would have been aware that a U.S. Navy radiation health officer was watching their backs.

Navy Lieutenant Matt D. Beery, from his assignment at the Fifth Army Headquarters at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, was responsible for planning and providing guidance in the event of a nuclear or radiological attack on the Olympics. He evaluated potential targets, monitored the intelligence reporting, and simulated potential attacks for planning purposes.

"While I was nowhere near Vancouver, British Columbia," said Beery, "I felt close to the action because U.S. Army North, the Army component of U.S. Northern Command, watches over all of North America 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, gathering information from all the subordinate commands and then coordinating a daily videoconference to ensure the right personnel are aware of the many threats out there."

Beery, an Ames, Iowa, native and graduate of Iowa State University with a master's degree in chemistry, said, "I joined the Navy after a short stint with Johnston and Johnston where I realized research was not my inspiration." Now he is a member of the Medical Radiobiology Advisory Team (MRAT), the operational component of the Military Medical Operations (MMO) at the Armed Forces Radiobiology Research Institute (AFRRI) in Bethesda, Maryland. He and other team members deploy with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency's Consequence Management Advisory Team to support real-world missions and exercises related to the entire chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosives spectrum. The MRAT provides the medical and health physics subject matter expertise for the radiological and nuclear components.

When not deployed on special assignments, Beery is the director of the AFRRI Medical Effects of Ionizing Radiation Course, which provides medical and operational personnel with the latest information concerning the biomedical consequences of radiation exposure, how the effects can be reduced, and how to medically manage casualties.

AFRRI, marking its 50th anniversary during 2010, uses its unique resources to research the biological effects of ionizing radiation and to provide medical training and emergency response. It is part of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences under the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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