EYGELSHOVEN, Netherlands – The cooperation and coordination between U.S. Army Europe and Africa and the U.S. military’s many allied and partner nation forces here in Europe is vitally important to promoting stability and security, strengthening partnerships, and fostering trust in the region. And as USAREUR-AF prepares for DEFENDER-Europe 21, scheduled for this spring, the exercise’s cooperation and coordination has already begun.
The 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s Army Field Support Battalion-Benelux recently joined forces with the Netherlands Ministry of Defense’s 11th Air Mobile Brigade (Air Assault) to prepare and make ready dozens of vehicles and equipment pieces scheduled to be deployed, issued and utilized by U.S.-based Army forces during the upcoming DEFENDER-Europe 21 exercise in the Baltics.
Assisting the automotive section and maintenance support shop at the Army Prepositioned Stock-2 Eygelshoven site, 23 mechanics and two staff operations specialists with the Dutch army’s 112th Maintenance Platoon, 11th Air Mobile Bde. worked one-on-one with the APS-2 workforce, Feb. 22-26, said Jasper Van Ijperen, an operations specialist assigned to AFSBn-Benelux.
“It’s really important now since we are getting close to our GO date, and we are still receiving equipment at the same time,” said Patrick Strobel, the site director at APS-2 Eygelshoven, AFSBn-Benelux.
Having the Dutch 11th Air Mobile Brigade maintenance platoon here working the backlog this week “will afford me the opportunity to peel additional mechanics away next week so they can receive equipment training needed for DEFENDER-Europe 21,” Strobel said.
And this is not the first time AFSBn-Benelux has worked with the 11th Air Mobile Brigade, according to Strobel. Last summer, the Dutch unit had a fleet of vehicles that needed servicing, and the team from APS-2 Eygelshoven stepped in to help.
“We worked out a program with them to assist each other,” Strobel said.
“It’s a great training opportunity,” Van Ijperen added.
This time, the two organizations – the 11th Air Mobile Bde. and AFSBn-Benelux – have combined the program and training opportunity with assisting the 405th AFSB in DEFENDER-Europe 21 preparations, said Strobel.
“It all went quite well,” said Dutch army 2nd Lt. Mike Stots, the 112th Maint. Plt. platoon leader, 11th Air Mobile Bde. “On the first day, we received the required training and were accompanied by mechanics from APS-2 Eygelshoven. Just the one day of training, and my mechanics already know what they are doing.”
The 405th AFSB is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, USAREUR-AF. The brigade is headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and provides materiel enterprise support to U.S. Forces throughout Europe and Africa – providing theater sustainment logistics; synchronizing acquisition, logistics and technology; and leveraging the U.S. Army Materiel Command materiel enterprise to support joint forces. For more information on the 405th AFSB, visit the official website at www.afsbeurope.army.mil and the official Facebook site at www.facebook.com/405thAFSB.