The 129th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion (CSSB), 101st Division Sustainment Brigade, executed Guardian Response 21 (GR21), from April 26 – May 6 at Camp Atterbury, Ind. Prior to the execution of GR21, the 129th CSSB began the arduous task of preparing for the upcoming validating exercise which would be held at Camp Atterbury.
This validation exercise was the final training certification for the 129th CSSB and fully prepared the Battalion to assume their upcoming mission to execute the Defense CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear) Response Force (DCRF) later this summer, Lt. Col. Shelia Day, commander, 129th CSSB, stated.
“The DCRF is the Department of Defense’s readily available response capability to events that affect the United States such as natural and man-made disasters,” Day continued. “This capability rapidly deploys to the point of need, in support of civil authorities, to save lives and reduce suffering of fellow Americans.”
GR21 was the validating exercise for four task forces: Task Force Logistics, Task Force Medical, Task Force Operations, and Task Force Aviation.
Those four task forces were consolidated together to form a larger more encompassing task force labeled as the Joint Task Force-Civil Support (JTF-CS).
“Task Force Logistics provides multi-class storage and distribution, maintenance and recovery, cargo transfer, and movement control. These capabilities are not only for the sustainment of the overall task force, but also in direct support to the Lead Federal Agency,” said Day.
To name a few tasks that TF-LOG was able to accomplish were conducting sling-load operations which included, hands on experience with rigging, inspecting, and hooking up loads to a notary wing aircraft.
This validating exercise itself is full of diversity, TF-LOG helped to deliver supplies not only on land but through air as well, allowing for four aerial Class I deliveries to all displaced civilians during the training.
Along with ensuring and facilitating movement between each of the Task Forces, 1st Lt. Braxton Wimbish, a native of Sharpsburg, Ga., the executive officer for 372nd Inter-Cargo Transportation Company ‘Deuce Train’, and his team also apart of TF-LOG were able to load and move over 200 containers in two days too three different locations spread throughout 40 miles.
“We were able to validate out-cargo transfers and aerial delivery capabilities,” said Wimbish. “ICTC’s proficiency in both areas increased as a direct result of the training we received.”
Helicopter landing zones (HLZs) were established and maintained in order to allow for not only training but for the delivery of future supplies or displaced civilians. TF-LOG was also able to emplace a water purification system. This water purification system allowed for significant support to decontamination. There was over 63,300 gallons of water distributed in support of GR21.
The 541st Transportation Company and 632nd Maintenance Control Team, 129th CSSB, established a Convoy Support Center (CSC) located at Fort Knox, Ky.
Once on ground, they set up a refueling station along with a Class I (food and water) commodities yard from April 25 - 27 April 2021 and May 05 - 07.
Their job would be to ensure the convoys traveling from Fort Campbell, Ky. to and from Camp Atterbury would have a place to refuel, recharge, and safely get back on the road to continue mission.
According to 1st Lt. Laura Faciane, a native of Ludowici, Ga., a platoon leader and convoy commander for the 541st Transportation Company ‘Fuel Hogs’, her team was able to supply over 7,000 gallons of fuel to TF-LOG by utilizing their Refuel on the Move Kits (ROM) to their M967 fuel tankers.
“We were able to reach outside of our capabilities and we hooked up the ROM kit to our 967s which has never been done before,” she said. It allowed us to train and prepare our Soldiers to execute outside of their normal duties “I’m extremely proud of the way our Soldiers performed during the training and execution of this mission.”
Once TF-LOG was refueled and rested they continued on to GR21.
TF-LOG tested and improved its deployment and redeployment procedures while exercising its equipment. The unit deployed by bus, convoy, and commercial line haul, maintaining accountability of equipment and personnel.
GR21 was a successful exercise that allowed those involved the opportunity to test equipment and personnel abilities, identifying both strengths and improvement.
The 129th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion (CSSB) and its subordinate units once again set the standard for Combat Sustainment Support.
Sustain the Rendezvous … HAMMER DOWN!