By Capt. Marion Jo NederhoedOctober 9, 2018
Echo Company, 2-1 Air Defense Artillery Battalion has a history of outstanding performance in maintenance discipline.
In 2017, Echo Company, 2-1 ADA at Camp Carroll, South Korea won both the Eighth Army (8A) and U.S. Army Pacific's (USARPAC) Army Award for Maintenance Excellence (AAME). They also competed at the Department of the Army (DA) level, but unfortunately didn't win.
"This year we have already competed and won the 8A level," said Capt. Terence Ngoh, Echo Battery Commander. "We are currently preparing for the USARPAC level on-site inspection scheduled for October 16."
To continually compete for the AAME it takes leadership and participation from Soldiers at all levels. E Company has a very high op-tempo supporting Patriot batteries that are continuously going through gunnery tables to maintain their proficiency and readiness. Also most Soldiers only serve a one year tour in Korea so it is a constant turnover of troops that presents other challenges requiring a solid maintenance program in order to maintain this high level of excellence.
The Army Award for Maintenance Excellence is a once a year competition for all maintenance units across the Department of Defense. The award displays an expertise and professionalism in performing maintenance tasks and is also essential for unit readiness. This competition is conducted in three phases for those units competing in South Korea.
Phase one is at the 8A Level and units under 8A compete against each other. A team of inspectors from 8A complete on-site inspection of all units that apply to compete. The winner and runner up qualifies to compete at the next stage.
In Phase two the USARPAC Level winners and runners up across USARPAC compete against each other. At this stage, a team of inspectors from USARPAC conducts on-site inspections of the units. Just like 8A level, the winner and runner up for USARPAC proceeds to the next level.
In Phase three at the DA Level, there is no on-site inspections. At this level unit submit packets and are inspected and a winner is selected.
"These Soldiers work hard every day," Capt Ngoh said. "They have to support the battalion through resupply and repair as well as continually maintain the maintenance program. It takes a high level of dedication."
The inspection includes the entire unit maintenance program to include arms room, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) room, drivers training program, communications shop, motor pool operations, Class IX Management, the Battery Maintenance Program, safety program, readiness reporting, publication management and more.