401st AFSB's LTF Salerno supports Task Force Rakkasan in Afghanistan
November 7, 2012
BAGRAM AIRFIELD, Afghanistan -- The 401st Army Field Support Brigade's Logistics Task Force Salerno is dedicated to supporting the Soldiers of 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division and associated units, also known as Task Force Rakkasan, in their area of operations.
The small team has or can reach back to leverage all the skill sets needed to support the Warfighters in their area. The LTF is led by Lt. Col. Betty J. Banks, commander and Sgt. 1st Class Dennis H. Spencer, noncommissioned officer-in-charge, and boasts a redistribution property assistance yard, theater provided equipment team and maintenance support team.
The TF Rakkasan brigade logistics support team is nested within the LTF and rounds out the capabilities with logistics assistance representatives who teach, mentor and assist Soldiers on equipment provided by the four Army Materiel Command's Life Cycle Management Commands.
Recently, during his first visit to the LTF, Col. Mark A. Paget, commander, 401st Army Field Support Brigade, was "treated like a truck" as he was walked through the process units use to turn in rolling stock for redistribution or retrograde.
Brandon Moore, AC First RPAT supervisor, ticked off the steps and whenever Paget had a ''what if' question, one of the LTF staff stepped forward to supply the answers and keep the process moving.
Paget talked to personnel who receive the equipment, enter information on the vehicle into various databases and systems, remove government furnished equipment, check for ammunition and explosives inside the vehicle, vacuum, wash, weigh and measure and finally turn the vehicle over to the transporters.
"You have to work with people," said Karen Y. Richards, theater property team 4 responsible officer.
Richards said she ensures government oversight of the theater provided equipment teams and the RPAT teams while serving as a contracting officer's technical representative. She maintains a cohesive relationship with the property book team at Salerno with a shared goal of minimizing errors that could potentially impact the Warfighters.
Paget also met Staff Sgt. Andre A. Barrow with the 519th Military Police Company, a North Carolina National Guard unit from Winterville, N.C. Barrow is a liaison officer between his unit and the LTF maintenance support team and as such spends much of his day in the MST area while his unit's vehicles are being repaired.
"They support me with whatever I need," Barrow said. "I'm over here every day and get a lot of support. We have a good relationship."
The AC First mechanics were working under the watchful eyes of Mohamed Basal the AC First safety officer who ensures health and safety requirements are met and disposal of waste is in accordance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations and/or host nation agreements.
"I hope I'm helping the Soldiers," said Eloy Flores, AC First lead mechanic, as he supervised work in the shop.
Work in the MST is conducted in six bays and outside when the bays are full said Kendrick Coleman, maintenance manager.
"Anything they need us to do, we're here to support the Warfighter," he said.