By 1st Lt. Verniccia FordFebruary 14, 2019
Soldiers assigned to G Company, 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, attached to the 101st Resolute Support Sustainment Brigade impact the livelihood of every deployed unit on Kandahar as well as countless organizations throughout the Combined Joint Operations Area- Afghanistan on a daily basis.
Vehicle recovery is one of the unique mission sets that Soldiers of the FSC have full control of on Kandahar. Anytime a vehicle breaks down or gets damaged outside the perimeters of the forward operating base a quick reaction force team is dispatched to recovery the disabled asset.
"These teams are on standby 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with a 15 minute notice to move timeline. Our quick response is imperative and impressive; our Soldiers go secure the equipment and return it back to Kandahar in an expedient manner," stated Capt. William Hill, a Texas native and company commander of the FSC. "Often times the recovery, process takes hours, depending on the severity of the damaged equipment. Our Soldiers do a great job being patient and completing the mission. Once they make it back on the FOB, maintainers work to fix the truck or turn it in for a replacement."
Upon recovering the vehicles, it's then turned over to an eight-man maintenance team who work diligently to perform repairs and get the vehicle back to the unit.
For many of the mechanics this is the first time ever seeing a mine-resistant ambush protected military vehicle. They spend countless hours learning how to be more proficient when repairing the Maxxpro which has resulted in a quicker turnaround repair time for the unit.
"This was a huge learning experience for us; in school we're not taught how to perform repairs on MRAP. Through self-teaching and guidance from our contractors our maintenance team has become so proficient that now when vehicles come in, instead of sending them out for repairs if we have the parts we just conduct the repairs ourselves," stated Sgt. Jiusi Guo, a wheeled vehicle mechanic and California native. "The units appreciate us because it's a faster turnaround time and gets them their vehicle back."
Operating outside the standard mission of an FSC, Soldiers in the company perform all sling load operations on Kandahar. With only four air assault qualified Soldiers they conduct all rigging, load certifications, and coordinate distribution of critical ammunition and equipment.
Spc. Ryan Tilton, a motor transportation operator assigned to the FSC, who is originally from Manchester, New Jersey, expressed his excitement about conducting sling load operations.
"I've never hear about air assault operations until we were deployed," he said. For someone who isn't air assault qualified it's so fulfilling to be able to do this work; we sling equipment to people in the Army, Marines and Afghan counterparts which is a good feeling. "Impacting people across Afghanistan and understanding the importance of planning loads and the movement factors."
G Co. roles in Afghanistan are immensely important, and require integration into many different layers of sustainment infrastructure, from sister units, Department of Defense civilians, and contractors. They have fostered relationships with organizations that is integral to the success of the FSC, and in turn integral to the success of their supported units.
With approximately six months remaining in the Middle East, Hill spoke highly of his team, and the continuously professionalism and dedication to the mission they exhibit.
"These Soldiers provide every type of support needed to help sustain the force through maintenance, field feeding, and sling load operations," said Hill. "The missions we support has a direct affect to the accomplishment the unit's mission. Without the food, supplies, fuel, and maintenance assets, the mission is not sustainable. Nothing moves without logistics, and our operations directly enable the tactical missions of the southern region and U.S. Forces Afghanistan."