TORII STATION, Okinawa (Aug. 29, 2012) -- The commander of the 8th Theater Sustainment Command visited a unit in Kure, Japan, to observe how the Soldiers assigned there conduct ammunitions operations from their headquarters in the southern prefecture of Hiroshima.

The Aug. 15 visit to the 83rd Ordnance Battalion was the first for Maj. Gen. Stephen R. Lyons since he took command of the 8th TSC two months ago.

Lt. Col. Kevin D. McCarley, commander of the 83rd Ord. Bn., said although his unit is more than 6,500 miles from the 8th TSC in Hawaii, Lyons' visit was of significance for the command team, but more important to his Soldiers.

"We're kind of in a remote location and this lets us know that we're not forgotten," said McCarley. "It shows that our higher headquarters cares about the unit, its mission and the entire organization."

McCarley also added that the general's visit to southern mainland Japan emphasizes the importance of the unit's strategic value for the U.S. Army Pacific.

Lyons had the opportunity to see two of the depot facilities at Hiroshima and Kawakami. At each location, the general said he gained insight regarding the unit's operations as he witnessed the teamwork between the Soldiers, Department of Defense civilians and local national employees.

Lyons said he also wanted the Soldiers to know they were "doing great things, but [to] remember their presence in the area extends beyond the depots and piers."

"You have a big role for U.S. Army in Japan," Lyons told the Soldiers. "Always remember, you're ambassadors as well. Continue going out and getting to know your neighbors."

The 83rd operates a total of four depots in Japan: three in the Hiroshima Prefecture and one on Okinawa. The unit supports the Pacific Command's full spectrum of operations and the Joint Munitions Command's maintenance and demilitarization programs.

The unit operates the Department of Defense Explosive Safety Board's burn site for small-caliber rounds and range brass. It also conducts maintenance to include replacing components, painting, remarking and repackaging a wide variety of munitions.

More than 30 Soldiers are assigned to the 83rd between both locations. The headquarters at Akizuki is situated on 2.9 acres of land to include a Morale, Welfare and Recreation facility with a fitness center, lodging and barracks and a restaurant.

Page last updated Wed August 29th, 2012 at 00:00