History of the 516th
Those who know of the Denelian Stormcrows think of three things: Heavy-class variations on the Valkyrie, hotshot pilots who can fly through the worst weather in the galaxy, and drop troopers who are only less well-known than the Elysians because they started Founding regiments later.
However, there are exceptions.
Typically Founded in groups of five Stormcrows are indeed most often drop troopers, and many Foundings have consisted of nothing but. However, when a Founding is requested for a specific front (or sometimes just because the Departmento Munitorum felt like checking off a box/there aren’t enough Valkyries to go around) a single regiment is instead formed as a ‘deviation’ regiment. The 516th is one of these deviations, a Reconnaissance regiment intended largely to scout out targets for their airborne brothers and sisters.
The 516th (Recon) shares several traits with the drop troopers from their homeworld. Both groups are expected to be on their own and out of contact with command for long periods of time, and both have thus developed a culture of independence and initiative. The Recon troopers lack the more glorious reputation of the drop troops, however, and do not tend to be as well-equipped at the personal level (although the inclusion of Chimeras and Sentinels does give them options the airborne lack). Among their fellow Founding regiments the 516th was and is largely regarded as a misfit unit, consisting of troopers who couldn’t make the cut for the airborne forces.
Whether or not that is true remains to be seen, as the 516th and the 520th arrive at their first deployment, the jungle world of Skrynne . . .
Colonel Devi Narcia was already something of an anomaly just for being the only female regimental commander of this Founding. Actually volunteering to command the deviation regiment made sure that all eyebrows involved were raised. While an officer of the Denelian PDF she was an adamant campaigner for diversification in the defenders of her homeworld – specialization was all well and good for a Guard regiment that could depend on its fellows from other worlds to fill in the gaps, she was fond of saying, but the PDF for the backwater planet of the Aftenbar system could hardly hope that drop troopers would be able to hold their own in the face of a concerted effort from invaders. When the Founding was announced she jumped at the chance, hoping that if the deviation regiment could achieve great victories that it would later trickle back and effect the PDF’s doctrines.
Although she is a largely untested commander she proved adept at remaining flexible during the training schedule, willing to give her battalion and company commanders room to operate under their own initiative in addition to adapting to the unexpected exceedingly well. The men and women under her command largely think of her as one of them, and have displayed fervent loyalty to her (if only, for the moment, in barroom brawls after drop troopers have dared to mock her).