MCALESTER, Okla. -- After a 36 minute flight from Texas, one of the U.S. Army Materiel Command's top bosses arrived for a guided tour and briefings on assets here, April 29.

Lt. Gen. James Pillsbury, deputy commanding general of AMC, took a pulse check of the Department of Defense's largest ammunition depot, McAlester Army Ammunition Plant, which is also the only producer of large-scale bombs.

MCAAP core capabilities include: loading, assembling, and packing bombs; 20 mm and 40 mm cartridge assemblies; propelling charges; rockets; warheads; renovation; demilitarization; research and development; and storage.

Pillsbury's first orders to everyone were to stay safe, often stopping to examine the safety of equipment used by AMC employees.

"If there was an emergency, we could load 425 containers with ammunition in a single day," said Bob Golden, chief of staff, MCAAP.

Pillsbury assisted a worker while Steve Saunier, MCAAP's explosives operator supervisor, explained the process of making a bomb -- from the outside shell to loading the explosive mix into the container.

AMC's motto is to sustain the strength of the nation and MCAAP's role is to provide the warfighters with the most effective weapons.

Pillsbury often paused to share a few words with workers, climbing a ladder to shake the hands of an explosives specialist and watched intently as she executed her mission.

"Thank you for what you do. Soldiers really need this and you provide it," said Pillsbury.

The tour ended with a working lunch with leadership, addressing successes, challenges, and the way ahead.

"Are there challenges' Yes, but not all organizations have good leadership and this one does. I can sniff out a bad organization and this is good," complimented Pillsbury.

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Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16