National Guard takes control of major U.S. command in Afghanistan
October 21, 2010
- "We're ready to start our mission running. These men and women want to be here and are proud to be here."
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- Joint Sustainment Command-Afghanistan, the senior supply and logistics command for all U.S. forces in Afghanistan, changed hands between two National Guard units Oct. 17 during a transfer of authority ceremony.
The Alabama National Guard's 135th Expeditionary Sustainment Command handed over the JSC-A to the Mississippi National Guard's 184th Expeditionary Sustainment Command.
"It's a historic time here in Afghanistan," said Army Brig. Gen. Reynold N. Hoover, 135th ESC commander. "It's the first time that two expeditionary sustainment commands and all of their down traces [all of the units they support], here in country, will change command."
Both sustainment commands worked closely with each other for more than a year, sharing information and techniques to prepare for the hand-off.
"We're ready to go," said Army Brig. Gen. Philip R. Fisher, 184th ESC commander. "We're ready to start our mission running. These men and women want to be here and are proud to be here."
The JSC-A is under new leadership, but its mission remains the same. The command is set to build on the foundations laid by previous units and plans to progress the sustainment mission in Afghanistan even further, he said.
"We've got to take the ball and move it down the field," said Gen. Fisher. "We want to leave this place better than we found it. I think it's the inherent responsibility of any unit."
JSC-A operates throughout Afghanistan and in countries such as Qatar, Kuwait and Kyrgyzstan. They supply troops in these areas with items ranging from water to ammunition.
"As I look back," said Gen. Hoover, "I'm especially proud that we clearly made a difference - making sure that every Soldier, Sailor, Airman and Marine always had a full canteen, hot meals, a bed to sleep in and ammunition, in case they ever need it."
Gen. Hoover said they have provided U.S. forces with more than 100 million meals and delivered more than 32 million pounds of mail.
The JSC-A has done a lot to supply the servicemembers in Afghanistan and the 184th ESC will continue that support.
"Of course our work is not done here," said Army Maj. Gen. Timothy P. McHale, U.S. Forces-Afghanistan deputy support commander. "We face a determined enemy. Success will take continued commitment and outstanding leadership, and we have just the right command team with Brigadier General Phil Fisher and Command Sergeant Maj. Jeffery Riggs."