SMA Preston 'gets underway' with Soldiers in Kuwait
November 14, 2006
KUWAIT NAVAL BASE (Army News Service, Nov. 15, 2006) - Sergeant Major of the Army Kenneth O. Preston got an up-close look at one of the Army's six Logistics Support Vessels during a recent visit to Kuwait.
Soldiers of the 411th Transportation Detachment gave Preston a two-hour tour of the ship, the SP/4 James A. Loux. LSV-6 is the only active-duty vessel in the Besson Class named for an enlisted Soldier.
Chief Warrant Officer Rob Brewer, LSV-6 commander, showed Preston how he operates the ship from the bridge, how Soldiers live in the berthing areas and also gave the SMA a detailed tour of the engine room.
"Seeing how our Soldiers live on the LSV was an eye-opening experience," said Preston. "The Soldiers are deployed to the area of operations for a yearlong tour. They are working extremely hard, and I am proud of their contributions in Kuwait and throughout the region."
The LSV-6 is propelled by two diesel engines and can transport 2,200 short tons of equipment. One of the ship's missions is to haul equipment to the port in Kuwait and to take battle-damaged equipment from Iraq and Kuwait to Qatar, where it travels to the continental United States for repair.
The LSV has a range of more than 6,500 nautical miles. Sgt. 1st Class Stephanie Young, 411th Transportation Detachment first sergeant, said every Soldier assigned to the ship offers a unique skill set.
"Because we are a small, self-sustaining detachment, these Soldiers rely on one another day in and day out," said Young. "Every Soldier is a key player in a bigger picture. The camaraderie these Soldiers feel for one another is unmatched and it reflects mission after mission."
The ship operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week with a crew of 31 Soldiers. Brewer said his Soldiers feel they're making a difference in the war on terror.
"The Soldiers here realize the relevance our role performs in projecting and sustaining joint combat operations in this or any theater of operations world-wide," said Brewer. "Mission accomplishment is their mantra. They will acknowledge nothing less; they're Army Strong."
The LSV was christened in 1995 in honor of Loux, who was posthumously awarded a Silver Star for gallantry due to his actions in Vietnam. Loux was assigned to the 458th River Boat Patrol Company, transporting aviation fuel in support of combat operations when his patrol boat struck an enemy mine. When his boat came under intense enemy fire, Loux manned his machine gun and returned fire until the enemy force broke contact. Loux died of his wounds on April 5, 1971.