High-speed specialist keeps convoys running
March 8, 2013
FORT HUNTER LIGGETT, Calif. - Spc. Cindy Le finds herself surrounded each day by a frenetic battle rhythm full of data, schematics, computer screens and other soldiers frantically moving about in one big whirlwind of an operations tempo.
"I'm just focused on making sure the cargo gets from point A to point B," said Le, a transportation coordinator with the 385th Transportation Battalion, 364th Expeditionary Sustainment Command.
Le and her comrades, who fall under the 96th Support Brigade, 79th Sustainment Support Command, were charged with running the tactical operations center during the 2012 Warrior Exercises at Fort Hunter Liggett, Calif.
According to Le, one of the most critical elements to a smooth operation is to discern between the two different types of movement requests they receive from the units in the field.
"We always have to first determine if what they're asking for requires a transportation movement request or if it's a convoy clearance request," said Le. "There's a big difference between the two."
A TMR is simply a request for supplies, be it fuel, water or anything else soldiers might run out of, she said, whereas a CCR requires security vehicles to escort the movement.
"When you're looking at a request, you have to be able to make sure the information is correct," said Le. "Whether it be 15,000 gallons of fuel needed immediately or 20 pallets of MREs, which can be planned for in advance."
Although WAREX provides excellent training for all Soldiers, Le uses situations such as these to build on her experiences overseas when she was deployed to Iraq in 2009 less than a year after graduating Basic and Advanced Individual Training.
"It was definitely a culture shock being thrown right into the tiger's cage," she said. "Prior to deployment, you learn what your job is and how to do it, but then all of a sudden, you're in theater surrounded by and working with other countries' armies and foreign nationals, where everything is joint."
Le is the kind of soldier who doesn't wait to be tasked, said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Robert Gulley, a transportation officer with the 96th.
"She definitely takes challenges head-on and is a front-runner," said Gulley. "Also, she's so enthusiastic and outgoing, she takes the initiative when something needs to get done. She doesn't wait for opportunities, she looks for them."