The Gift of Fuel
October 21, 2013
CAMP HUMPHREYS, South Korea -- For anyone coming into a new home it is traditional to give them a house-warming gift that will serve them well in creating a warm environment in their future home.
Recently, when the 4th Attack Reconnaissance Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment joined the 2nd Combat Aviation Brigade in the Republic of Korea, the Soldiers of Company A, 602nd Aviation Support Battalion decided to give them the best housewarming gift they could - fuel.
While moving their aircraft from the port of Busan to their new home at Camp Humphreys, 4th ARS-6th Cav. Regt., made a stop at Camp Walker, where the Company A Soldiers anxiously awaited their arrival to do what they were trained to do which is supply petroleum to the new aircraft.
The Soldiers were deployed to Camp Walker and manned the Forward Area Refueling Point, or FARP, while 4th ARS, 6th Cav. Regt., moved aircraft to their new home. The experience provided the Soldiers from 4th ARS, 6th Cav. Regt., with their first experience working alongside other Soldiers from 2nd CAB.
"The fuelers from the 602nd ASB were very professional and without their support we could not have accomplished our port operations mission ferrying aircraft from the pier to Camp Humphreys," said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Ronnie Eo, from Redwood Shores, Calif., and currently an instructor pilot assigned to Company B 4th ARS,6th Cav. Regt.
This wasn't just a simple refueling mission for the 602nd ASB Soldiers. They received their first hands-on training of how to fuel the new helicopters. While on the ground, petroleum supply specialists, known as fuelers in the Army, from 4th ARS,6th Cav. Regt., taught their fellow fuelers how to properly fuel and safely handle the OH-58 Kiowa Warrior helicopters. For most of the Company A Soldiers this was not their first time setting up a FARP and refueling aircraft in the field. However, this was the first time that any of them had ever touched a Kiowa.
"Our purpose was to refuel and get all the [aircraft] back to Camp Humphreys safely," says Spc. Jim Crawford from a petroleum supplier from Burlington, Wis., assigned to Company A, 602nd ASB. "Safety was the biggest thing I took into consideration from the training. We can slow down, take our time, and get it right."
Company A, 602nd ASB may have given the gift of fuel; however, they received great training in return. The Soldiers also got the opportunity to participate in a moment of history, as the first rotational unit deployed to Korea conducted their first mission in country.
"It feels really good to be a part of something so big on the Korean peninsula," said Pfc. Chavez Galloway, from Columbus, Ga., and assigned to Company A, 602nd ASB as a fueler. "I've learned a lot here; I've learned the importance of why we are here and what our mission is here."