By Sgt. 1st Class Nicole HowellDecember 30, 2015
JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii (Dec. 30, 2015) -- Thirty 545th Transportation Company, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, or TSC, waterborne Soldiers arrived home just in time for the holidays after completing a six-month deployment to Camp Patriot, Kuwait, Dec. 23.
Led by Chief Warrant Officer 3 Clinton Smith, the 163rd Transportation Detachment's commander, and Sgt. 1st Class Timothy Carman, the detachment's first sergeant, the premier warriors formed up here before Family, friends and fellow service members.
"During the deployment, the Soldiers of the 163rd Transportation Detachment showed how diversified and resilient they were by conducting and completing all tasks assigned to them," said Col. Phillip Mead, the 8th TSC deputy commanding officer. "Many of these tasks, such as becoming licensed on other vessels, were outside of their scope as crew members of a Logistic Support Vessel [LSV]."
The Soldiers left Hawaii in late June to join other watercraft troops supporting Central Command's transportation operations throughout the Persian Gulf by taking control of LSV-6, the "SP4 James A. Loux," and the mission of getting this vessel to the shipyard for maintenance.
During this multi-million dollar process, they were charged with overseeing the validity of the contract and that every piece of equipment, not structurally part of the ship, was being handled according to the contract. This was accomplished by ensuring all international and domestic codes were being adhered to; this also ensured the vessel was completed on time and on budget.
Another significant mission accomplished during their deployment was the licensing of the detachment on a smaller vessel, the Landing Craft Utility.
"Each crew member conducted hands on performance measures and was found competent at their respective skill level within 28 days," Mead said. "This was a record breaking achievement, because it normally takes 90 days to license one Soldier but within 28 days a whole detachment was licensed."
Not all individuals of the 163rd were required to hold a marine license. Most of the support personnel were able to assist other watercraft units in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility when their Soldiers could not sail. When not assisting other units, these members participated in additional Soldier readiness training to maintain their tactical proficiency.
"Due to their versatility and determination for success they were able to help fill the gap when needed to help other units provide the world-class, logistical support to the warfighter," Mead said. "Welcome home and happy holidays."