CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- During the month of March, a Connecticut Army National Guard (CTARNG) Unit and a Puerto Rico Army Reserve Unit transported over 75 twenty-foot equivalent units shipping containers of retrograde ammunition returning from overseas locations on flatbed trailers to Letterkenny Munitions Center (LEMC) as part of Operation Patriot Bandoleer.

Keeping with LEMC's deep tradition of strategic partnering opportunities to develop Soldier, NCO and officer expertise, the National Guard and Reserve Soldiers involved in OPB gained knowledge and hands-on experience associated with their Military Occupational Specialties. The 432nd Transportation Company, U.S. Army Reserve -- Puerto Rico and the 1048th Transportation Company, CTARNG supported U.S. Army munitions readiness requirements while enhancing their knowledge and skills throughout the operation.

Operation Patriot Bandoleer demonstrated the capabilities of the U.S. Armed Forces and their civilian counterparts at LEMC to rapidly execute receipt and storage operations, while providing valuable on-the-job training to the Soldiers involved as well as saving transportation costs. With support from adjacent states and the Army Reserve, the 220th Motor Transportation Battalion (MTB), Missouri Army National Guard (MOARNG), organized a multi-state, multi-composite task force to transport the containers from military ports to various Army depots across the country.

"Operation Patriot Bandoleer allows the Transportation Company and Battalion the chance to execute their Mission Essential Task List (METL) on the Objective-T assessment. This real world operation gives a tangible mission for the Soldiers and provides units with the tools to perform their METL's," said 1st Lt. Ryan Barker, 220th MTB, MOARNG. "Supporting this logistical retrograde mission has been invaluable to training these units and their Soldiers. We are honored to take part of an important and rewarding mission."

After arriving at LEMC, the Soldiers lined up their trucks along the road near one of LEMC's major containerization docks and LEMC employees unloaded the containers from the trucks. With unloading operations complete, LEMC Logistics Operations team will now work diligently to receive, inventory and store the items.

"The operation was successful because of a cooperative team effort between the National Guard, U.S. Army Reserves, Letterkenny Army Depot, and all the Divisions within LEMC," said Keith Byers, Logistics Operation Chief, LEMC.

"Readiness, both strategic readiness and tactical unit readiness, is paramount for the U.S. Army. OPB ensures requisite levels of readiness are delivered to commanders at all levels," said Lt. Col. Jeffrey Ignatowski, commander of Letterkenny Munitions Center.

LEMC frequently partners with U.S. Army Reservists and National Guard Units to offer training opportunities to Soldiers. The training and experience, which would otherwise be inaccessible to these units, is invaluable to ensure warfighting readiness objectives.

LEMC is located on Letterkenny Army Depot and is a Government-Owned, Government-Operated installation. LEMC conducts regional and global distribution of munitions, provides missile maintenance, and conducts demilitarization of munitions for the U.S. Army in support of the Department of Defense and international partners to provide readiness to the Warfighter.