BRUNSSUM, Netherlands – After multiple tours in Italy, the traffic management specialist was looking for a change of scenery and wanted to experience more of Europe. So when a job offer came her way and it also included a promotion, Victoria Letrien snatched it up.
The installation transportation officer at Brunssum has been assigned to the Logistics Readiness Center Benelux since April of 2022. She said she’s enjoying her new duty location and new organization very much.
After serving three tours in Italy, the last with the 39th Movement Control Team in Vicenza, Letrien said nearly everything about the Netherlands and the new job with the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s LRC Benelux is different.
“Living in the Netherlands is different than being stationed in Italy, but I’m enjoying it,” Letrien said. “I think it’s a beautiful country, and I love the nature here. There are a lot of beautiful walking trails to explore, for example, so I’m really enjoying it.”
One of the biggest differences between Italy and the Benelux is the climate, said the native of Trinidad and Tobago who considers Raleigh, N.C., her home, now. Brunssum can be quite cold during the winter months, she added.
Work is different, too. In her new role at LRC Benelux, Letrien manages all the personal property actions for a wide area of operations. This includes inbound and outbound household goods and unaccompanied baggage shipments for U.S. service members and their families in Belgium, Netherlands, and some areas of Germany and France.
“We have quite an extensive area to cover, even some areas of France that are considered remote. We are also responsible for some of the moves in and out Poland and in and around that area of operation. Actually, today we received a request to support a move in Estonia so that’s interesting,” said Letrien.
“Overall, I’m responsible for making sure all the customer requests for household goods moves to and from our area of responsibility are done in a timely manner and completed in good order,” Letrien said. “And as the senior transportation officer here in Brunssum I supervise a team of transportation employees.”
With over 21 years of experience, Letrien is more than qualified. She has served almost 17 years as a government civilian employee working in transportation. Besides being stationed in Italy, she also worked in places like Charleston, S.C., and Pensacola, Florida. She even served as a contractor supporting Department of the Navy moves, and she was a Soldier for five years, finishing her active duty service as an Army corporal.
Here at LRC Benelux “I have a very good team,” Letrien said. “They are very knowledgeable and reliable, and I depend on them. They allow me the time I need to complete the administrative portions of my duties.”
With two adult daughters and three grandchildren – ages 5, 8 and 11 – and working for the Army all these years, Letrien’s perception of family has gradually broadened. She now considers the Soldiers she supports an extension of her immediate family.
“Without Soldiers I wouldn’t have a job so this is my way of giving back,” she said. “With my background and experience in transportation, I’m able to affect Soldiers and their Families in a positive manner and in a small way take care of them during what can certainly be considered a stressful time – during their permanent change of station moves.”
Letrien oversees more than a dozen personnel assigned to the transportation office in Brunssum. They include transportation counselors, quality control, and drivers testing and training station personnel responsible for personal property, QA and driver’s testing. The personal property office counsels and assists the community members with their household goods, unaccompanied baggage, non-temporary storage and personally owned vehicles. They also ensure community members are well informed and briefed on their entitlements, whether that’s their POVs, storage or shipments – anything that pertains to personal property. For drivers testing and training in Brunssum, host nation licenses are issued to the U.S. military community members there.
LRC Benelux is one of seven LRCs under the command and control of the 405th AFSB. LRCs execute installation logistics support and services to include supply, maintenance, and transportation as well as clothing issue facility operations, hazardous material management, personal property and household goods, passenger travel, non-tactical vehicle and garrison equipment management, and property book operations. When it comes to providing day-to-day installation services, LRC Benelux directs, manages and coordinates a variety of operations and activities in support of U.S. Army Garrison Benelux.
LRC Benelux reports to the 405th AFSB, which is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa. 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 U.S. Army Materiel Command’s materiel enterprise to support joint forces. For more information on the 405th AFSB, visit the official website and the official Facebook site.