Sustainer - June 2012


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The official publication of the Joint Sustainment Command - Afghanistan and the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary).

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Sustainer - June 2012

  1. 1. June2012 Sustainer Published in the interest of Joint Sustainment Command - Afghanistan Soldiers and their Families Sustainers take charge Page 6Sustainers receive combat patches Page 9
  2. 2. Volume1 Sustainer June2012On the inside ... From the editor:Commander’s Corner Welcome to the first edition of Sustainer mag- azine - a monthly publication by the Joint Sustain- Page 3 ment Command - Afghanistan Public Affairs Office.The Chaplain’s Office This magazine is for you - Soldiers and Fami- Page 3 lies of the JSC-A. We’d like to get your feedback on the content and anything you’d like to see in futureThe Leader’s Book issues, so send me an e-mail, or write on our Face- Page 4 book wall ( ESC Soldiers deploy While you are taking a few minutes to read this letter, I’d like to discuss an important topic to Page 5 Soldiers and their Families: voting.Sustainers take charge As American citizens, we have the right to Page 6 elect our representatives and leaders. As Soldiers, we fight to defend that right.Navy customs support Army This year is a major election year, and we all Page 8 need to take the time to educate ourselves on theKandahar celebrates AAPI candidates and vote. Page 9 If you need help, or don’t know where to start, head on over to the Federal Voting Assistance Pro-“Combat patches” for all gram website ( to get started. Page 9 If you still need help, feel free to contact me atSustainers tour water plant, and I can help you out. Page 10 Sgt. 1st Class Rob Strain233rd tackles new mission Sustainer Editor Page 11Important retention chagnes Page 12And much more ... The Sustainer magazine is an authorized publication for members of the DOD. Contents of Sustainer are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government or the Department of the Army. The editorial content of this publication is the responsibility of the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs Office. Brig. Gen. Kristin French, Comanding General, 3d ESC Maj. Jim Bono, Public Affairs Officer Sgt. 1st Class Rob Strain, Sustainer Editor Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin, Sustainer Staff Writer Contributing Writers: Jacquelene Van Pool, Master Sgt. Adam Eckstein, Sgt. Ken Scar, Sgt. Chris Huddleston The Sustainer staff can be reached by email at, by phone: (502) 624-8523, or by mail to 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), ATTN: PAO, 1747 Old Ironsides Ave, Fort Knox, KY 40121. On the cover: Captain Matthew Sinor, an international and operational law attorney with the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), receives his combat patch signifying past or active participation in wartime service, from Brig. Gen. Kristin K. French, the 3d ESC’s commanding general, during a ceremony at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan on May 17. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin) Page 2
  3. 3. Volume1 Sustainer June2012 Commander’s Corner - Afghanistan Joint Sustainment Command Brig. Gen. Kristin FrenchSustainer Families and friends, stan. We have Soldiers deployed in all regions of the country and I am excited to officially are supporting the warfighterkick off the inaugural issue of throughout Afghanistan. As weJoint Sustainment Command – highlight mission and personnelAfghanistan’s Sustainer magazine. in this magazine, we hope it willSince arriving at Kandahar Air give you insight into the difficultField, or KAF, in early/mid-April, logistics and support challengesall of our Soldiers have been busy our Soldiers face on a daily basis.– they processed thru Manas,Kyrgyzstan,; completed final in- I want to especially thankcountry training; were involved in our Families, friends and the Fortthe transfer of authority process Knox community for all your sup-between the 4th Sustainment port. We have seen care packagesCommand (Exp) and us; and, as flowing in and truly appreciateof May 7, took over the driver’s all you are doing for us. I wouldseat as we support U.S. and coali- like to remind everyone to regu-tion forces. larly visit the 3d ESC Facebook page where we post many stories Additionally, JSC-A head- and photos at www.facebook.quarters had six Soldiers re-enlist to do a great job tackling all the com/3dESC.and conducted a patch ceremony, missions that are given to them.where all Soldiers received autho- Sustaining the Line!rization to wear the 3d ESC patch Over the next nine months Brig. Gen. Kristin K. Frenchon the right sleeve of their uni- we look forward to showcasing Sustainer 6forms for the rest of their military the hard work of JSC-A and ourcareers. JSC-A Soldiers continue subordinate units across Afghani- The Chaplain’s Command - Afghanistan Joint Sustainment Office Lt. Col. David Vanderjagt30 days in the Sand is already covered in dirt by the gather late at night around card time the morning walk to work is tables to enjoy an hour of fun after Here are some reflections of completed. a busy day.memories of the first thirty days inAfghanistan. The smell, well let’s just say Boxes arrive filled with it will not be missed by anyone. goodies from schools where chil- It is sometimes easy to find dren send their support in simplereasons to complain when faced A 14-hour day is not un- ways. One young girl I know askedwith a difficult or unwelcome cir- common and the days of the week that she receive no birthday pres-cumstance. are already blurring together. Per- ents on her birthday, but rather for sonal space is limited. all those attending to bring a gift Though we are Soldiers for Soldiers serving here.and have volunteered for this mis- In the size of my teen boy’ssion, and we are all willing to be bedroom we stack four Soldiers. Sand, heat, dust, andhere because of that call, does not Some are up early, and some are crowded quarters are but a smallmean that this is our preferred up late, and NO one is as quiet as price to pay to serve our in the world. Not one Soldier a mouse.I know put down Afghanistan for We sustain the line.their next family vacation. Are all reflections then shadows and negative? No! Chaplain Vanderjagt The days are already turn-ing hot and dusty. The clean uni- Duty fills our hearts withform put on fresh in the morning pride to serve our nation. Friends 3 Page
  4. 4. Volume1 Sustainer June2012 Command Sgt. Command - Afghanistan Joint Sustainment Maj.’s Corner Command Sgt. Maj. Karl RobertsGreetings from Kandahar Air-field, I just wanted to take amoment to let you, the Familiesand friends of the 3d SustainmentCommand (Expeditionary), knowthat your Soldiers have performedphenomenally since arriving here.We have trained hard in prepara-tion and now it is time to performto standard. As the senior enlisted lead-er in the 3d ESC, I believe in hardwork and dedication to the mis-sion. But I also know that Soldiersneed time off to recuperate andconnect with you, the Families,back home. With this said, I would liketo share with you what’s availablefor your Soldiers at Kandahar Air-field. ergy expended during their work- another route, the Morale, Welfare out, your Soldiers have the option and Recreation offices here have Kandahar Airfield is of eating at seven dining facilities computers and phones availablesprawling base located in southern that serve breakfast, lunch, dinner for use at no cost to the Soldier.Afghanistan which houses more and at some, midnight meals. Andthan 25,000 NATO and U.S. Forc- if the dining facilities get old, there While there are manyes. Major commands located here are several restaurants to include recreation and leisure optionsinclude Regional Command-South Kentucky Fried Chicken, TGI- available to your Soldiers while(RC-S) and NATO’s International Fridays, and Mamma Mia’s Pizza, deployed, I do want to inform youSecurity Assistance Force (ISAF). that they can pick up food. that they are working really hard. Being that Kandahar For your Soldier’s spiritual I am proud to serve asAirfield is an expeditionary base, needs Kandahar Airfield has sev- their senior enlisted advisor andaccess to some commercial goods eral Chaplains and Chapel servic- am proud to be a member of suchand military supplies is limited, so es available. Times and locations a great and professional team.please send your loved one needed for Chapel services are posteditems. around post and there are a vast I would like to thank our variety available. friends, Families and Fort Knox There is an AAFES Ex- communities for your support aschange here where Soldiers can And last, but not least, we embark on our mission as wepurchase the necessities, but they Kandahar Airfield has various in- form the Joint Sustainment Com-may need your help for limited ternet and phone options available mand –Afghanistan. We truly missitems. so that you can stay connected you and we look forward to seeing with your Soldiers. you soon. First, I would like tohighlight one of my favorite des- In their rooms, Soldiers Sustaining the Line!tinations, the gym. Located at have the option of purchasing CSM Karl A. RobertsKandahar Airfield are two very internet connectivity from sev- Sustainer 7nice exercise facilities that have eral vendors who offer a varietyequipment available ranging from of plans to accommodate thosetreadmills to free weights. interested. To recoup some of the en- For those wanting to go 4 Page
  5. 5. Volume1 Sustainer June20123d ESC Soldiers deploy to Afghanistan Sgt. 1st Class Rob Strain bang up job,” Col. Kristin French, the 3d ESC commander, said. FORT KNOX, Ky. – Morethan 150 Soldiers from the 3d “I really feel that the teamSustainment Command (Expedi- has come together,” French added.tionary) departed Fort Knox April “We’ve got an opportunity now to15 for a nine-month deployment to show off our talents.”Afghanistan in support of Opera-tion Enduring Freedom. For Chief Warrant Officer 3 Joseph Giles, the 3d ESC air op- The deployment marks the erations technician, being a partthird for the 3d ESC since it relo- of the team makes this deploy-cated to Fort Knox in June 2007. ment that much better than hisThe command deployed to Iraq in first tour to of Operation Iraqi Free-dom in May 2008 and to Haiti in Giles, a Horseheads, N.Y.,January 2010 in support of Opera- native, explained that during histion Unified Response. first deployment, he joined the unit 30 days before they deployed Staff Sgt. Mike Chreene, a finance noncom- While deployed, the 3d and didn’t have time to get to missioned officer with the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), talks to his sonESC will ensure all United States know anyone else. Caleb, 4, before deploying to Afghanistan Apriland selected Coalition and Afghan 15. Chreene was one of more than 150 3d ESC Soldiers who left on a nine-month deploymentMilitary Forces are supported and “I didn’t know anybody,” April 15. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Robsustained throughout the country Giles said. Strain)and to assist in the responsibledrawdown of U.S. Forces. Given In addition to not know- “I’ll be doing what I knowits joint mission, the commands ing anyone else in the unit, Giles how to do,” Giles said, adding thatname will be converted from an said he ended up doing a job he he already knows his counterpartsESC to a Joint Sustainment Com- wasn’t familiar with, but that isn’t and what he is getting into.mand – Afghanistan. the case this deployment – he has That doesn’t mean the deployment been assigned to the 3d ESC for will be easy; Giles said the most “The Soldiers are ready to nearly two years, training for this challenging part will be gettingexecute the mission in Afghani- deployment. used to the environment and thestan, and I’m confident they’ll do a quality of life – as well as leaving his wife and kids. “It’s hard leaving family,” Giles said. “The Families are ready; the Soldiers are ready, [and] the Fort Knox community is ready to send us off,” French said. Command Sgt. Maj. Karl Roberts, the 3d ESC senior enlist- ed advisor, indicated his readiness in four simple words. “Fall in; let’s go,” Roberts said, referring to the military com- mand to gather troops.Spc. Nestor Reyes, a supply specialist with the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), takessome time alone to talk to family on the phone before his deployment to Afghanistan April 15. (U.S.Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Rob Strain) Page5
  6. 6. Volume1 Sustainer June2012Sustainers take charge in AfghanistanBrig. Gen. Kristin K. French, the commanding general of the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), and Command Sgt. Maj. Karl A. Roberts Sr.,the 3d ESC’s senior enlisted leader, uncase the command’s colors during a transfer of authority at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan May 7. During theceremony, the 3d ESC took command of Joint Sustainment Command – Afghanistan from the 4th ESC and became the senior logisticians in county andare responsible for all logistics operations within the Afghanistan theater. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Andrew Valles) Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin and I’m confident that you are up to the task.” KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, Afghanistan – The3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) officially With the transfer, the Sustainers are now thetook command of the Joint Sustainment Command senior logisticians in county and are responsible for– Afghanistan (JSC-A) during a Transfer of Authority all logistics operations within the Afghanistan the-at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan, on May 7. ater. As the commanding element of JSC-A, the 3d ESC will oversee more than 40,000 logistics Soldiers, The 3d ESC, based out of Fort Knox, Ky., took civilians and contractors providing support to Unitedover operations from the 4th Sustainment Command States forces, Coalition partners and Afghan forces(Expeditionary), who is headquartered at Fort Sam in theater.Houston, Texas, and commanded by Brig. Gen. Les J.Carroll. While the 3d ESC’s mission will be similar to that of the 4th ESC, Brig. Gen. Kristin K. French, Reviewing the ceremony was Maj. Gen. Wil- commanding general of the 3d ESC, said that sheliam E. Rapp, the deputy commander-support for was confident in her Sustainer’s abilities to takeUnited States Forces – Afghanistan, who thanked charge.the 4th ESC for their hard work and diligence duringtheir tour and expressed confidence in the 3d ESC’s “The 3d ESC is ready to conduct our twoability to carry on the mission. critical missions, to support and sustain all U.S. and selected Coalition Forces throughout the country, as “As the 4th ESC reflects over their past 12 well as to assist in the responsible return of equip-months they can take great pride in their numerous ment and personnel,” said French. “I am confident weaccomplishments and find solace in the fact that as will succeed in both tasks.”simple as it may sound, they made a difference andthey made everything count,” said Rapp. “To the With its main mission being sustainment andSoldiers of the 3d ESC, the theater of operations is a logistics operations, the 3d ESC’s support opera-constantly evolving one. I know that each one of you tions section will play a major role in the deployment.are multifunctional and there are no one-trick ponies See TOA, next page Page6
  7. 7. Volume1 Sustainer June2012TOA, from previous “The ceremony is the culmination of all our pre-deployment training, relief in place and our com-Col. Gregory Koller, the 3d ESC’s support operations mitment to the mission in accordance with the com-officer in charge, said that his section is ready and mander’s guidance,” Roberts said.willing to fulfill the command’s mission. French said that she looked forward to lead- “The transfer of authority means we’re ready, ing the JSC-A, and thanked the 4th ESC for settingthat we’re large and in charge,” said Koller. “It now a high standard during their time in theater. Shefalls on us to continue the challenging logistics mis- promised to improve operations even more during hersion we face here in Afghanistan.” time in command. This deployment for the 3d ESC marks the For the 4th ESC, the ceremony marked thethird since the command moved to Fort Knox from end of a successful campaign in which Brig. Gen. LesWiesbaden, Germany in 2007. Before deploying to J. Carroll, the commanding general of the 4th ESC,Afghanistan in April, the 3d ESC deployed to Iraq in said that he appreciated everything that his Soldierssupport of Operation Iraqi Freedom and to Haiti in accomplished during their of Operation Unified Response. Fully trained and ready to assume the mis- Command Sgt. Maj. Karl A. Roberts Sr., the sion, the 3d ESC and its Soldiers are ready to as-3d ESC’s senior enlisted leader said that the transfer sume the mission of JSC-A.of authority is important to the command and theSoldiers to which it supports. O n this day, 237 years ago, our Nation’s leaders established the Continental Army to protect op- pressed colonists yearning for freedom – beginning our Army’s rich heritage of defending our country and her citizens. Today, we celebrate the generations of Soldiers who embraced this calling and have served this great Nation with honor, loyalty and bravery in peace and war for more than two centuries. Change has always been an enduring theme of our Army’s experience. After our long war for independence, we adapted to meet the needs of an expanding Nation – securing frontiers, building roads and canals, and mapping new territories. In the twentieth century, we fought two World Wars to defeat tyranny and spread the cause of freedom – emerging as the stabilizing global force. From Korea to Vietnam to the Persian Gulf, we answered our Nation’s ever call to preserve peace and stability. And, following the attacks of September 11, 2001, our Army made the decisive contribution to the global struggle against violent extremism. Today, more than a decade later, as we reflect on our accomplishments in Iraq, continue to serve our Nation’s in- terests in Afghanistan and elsewhere, and protect the American people at home, we remain vigilant as we prepare for the challenges of an uncertain future. Despite all this, some things have never changed. Our Army has always remained true to our enduring professional values: we value the dignity and respect of all our Soldiers, Families and civilians; we honor the sacred trust our Nation places with us; and, we remain our Nation’s loyal servants – defending the principles upon which our Declaration of Independence and Constitution were established. For 237 years, America’s Army has always answered the Nation’s call, and we always will. On the Army’s Birthday, we thank every Soldier, civilian and Family member who has ever served in our ranks for your dedication to duty and the selfless service that have made us all Army Strong. Happy Birth- day! Page 7
  8. 8. Volume1 Sustainer June2012US Navy customs supports Army retrograde Jacquelene Van Pool vehicles that have been in theater “We are the last stop,” said 401st Army Field Support Brigade for years are free of contaminates Matuza. “When it departs Afghani- such as biological hazards, am- stan, it’s completely clear of any- KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, munition, bird nests, moths and thing that might harm the UnitedAfghanistan - “When the Army larvae. They also provide train- States.”called, we answered,” said Petty ing to the workers who clean theOfficer 2nd Class Trini Castro. vehicles showing them the places To meet President Obama’s most often missed. goal of bringing home combat Castro, along with ap- forces from Afghanistan by 2014,proximately 20 members of a U.S. The process to clear ve- the Army has already begun toNavy customs team from Kuwait, hicles for shipment back to the remove excess equipment from theare now assisting the 401st Army States starts long before it gets country.Field Support Brigade in their custom’s cleared. First, the unitretrograde mission. The sailors who had the vehicle cleans it and “The Navy customs teamwho serve as customs agents help ensures that it is free of any bio- has been an invaluable resourceensure that the vehicles are ready logical material and ammunition. and has helped to ensure that thefor shipment back to the United After determining there is no lon- battalion met its retrograde goalsStates. ger a use for the vehicle in theater, during the past two months,” said it is turned into a redistribution Lt. Col. Nathan Acree, support “Our mission is to stay property assistance team yard. operations officer for the AFSBn-here as long as the Army needs At the RPAT yard, it is thoroughly Kandahar. “We have learned a lotus,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer cleaned and processed. from them and as a result, we areJohn Matuza, who is attached to better prepared to meet the de-the Army Field Support Battalion- During the final stages, the manding future requirements ofKandahar. “We basically make vehicles are inspected by the Navy retrograde.”sure everything is good to go back customs agents to ensure the ve-to the United States.” hicles are totally clean before they Before coming to theater, are shipped back to the States. the sailors went through a five The team ensures that See NAVY, next pagePetty Officer 3rd Class Jeffery Ziegler, from San Antonio, Texas, performs an inspection on a fuel tanker being prepared for shipment back to the UnitedStates. He is part of a Navy customs team assigned to the Army Field Support Battalion-Kandahar, 401st Army Field Support Brigade. The team is help-ing to expedite the shipping of excess equipment back to the U.S. in preparation for the reduction of U.S. forces in the coming year. (U.S. Army photo byJacquelene Van Pool) Page 8
  9. 9. Volume1 Sustainer June2012NAVY, from previous ing], learning their lingo [and] how Many of the sailors were they do business,” said Castro. also glad to be helping anotherweek training course back in the service.States. Additional training was “It’s nice to interact withprovided in Kuwait. another branch of service,” said “Coming back here was Petty Officer 1st Class Edward Yo- a priority,” said Matuza, “to do For many on the team, this shikawa. “A lot of people don’t get something to help [the Army]is the first experience doing a joint that opportunity, to interact with because they are doing multiplemission. another branch of service in their missions, going outside the wire career.” all the time.” “At first it was [challeng-Kandahar celebrates Asian American, Pacific Islander heritage Master Sgt. Adam Eckstein severed to build a better life for their children and all Equal Opportunity Advisor Americans,” Obama wrote in his declaration. KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, Afghanistan - Whilemuch of the interest for Joint Sustainment Com- A joint event hosted by units falling undermand-Afghanistan units based at Kandahar Airfield both the 82d Airborne Division and Joint Sustain-was focused on maintaining sustainment activi- ment Command-Afghanistan, the observance wasties for units based in Afghanistan, approximately not overshadowed by the neon lights, fast food res-500 Soldiers, civilians and contractors were able to taurants or runners on the track even though it wastake time out of their busy schedules to focus on the situated amidst the sometimes hectic pedestrian traf-Asian American Pacific Islander Observance held fic of the airfield’s famously nicknamed “boardwalk”.during the twilight hours of May 18. For one 3d ESC Soldier the same held true. The theme for this year’s observance was“Striving for Excellence in Leadership, Diversity and Spc. Frank Eldridge, a light vehicle mechanicInclusion.” and native of Louisville, Ky., observed that Asian American Pacific Islanders “were proud of their his- The theme was chosen to focus on the Ex- tory and knowledge and willing to show their tradi-ecutive Order on Diversity and Inclusion signed by tions with their fellow service members”.President Barack Obama on August 18, 2011. For those passersby on the boardwalk who “Generations of Asian Americans and Pacific might have been unaware of the observance, fewIslanders (AAPI) have helped develop and defend the walked away without a greater understanding of theUnited States, often in the face of tremendous racial culture of the Asian American Pacific Islander.and cultural prejudice. Despite these difficulties,AAPI men and women struggled, sacrificed, and per-Sustainers receive combat patch Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin KANDAHAR AIR FIELD,Afghanistan -- After 30 days incountry, Soldiers of the 3d Sus-tainment Command (Expedition-ary) marked their deployment toKandahar Air Field, Afghanistan,May 17 by receiving their combatpatch during a ceremony here. Brig. Gen. Kristin K.French, the 3d ESC’s command-ing general, presented the Soldierswith their patches as they offi-cially became a part of command’shistory. French said that she was Specialist Brandon Johnson, a visual information equipment operator with the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), receives his combat patch signifying past or active participation in wartime service, from Brig. Gen. Kristin K. French, the 3d ESC’s commanding general, during a cer- See PATCH, next page emony at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan on May 17. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin) Page 9
  10. 10. Volume1 Sustainer June2012PATCH, from previous leaders and Soldiers to identify Kinston, N.C., native. “I feel that their troops. it represents something I couldproud and excited to present the always tell my children about andSoldiers of the 3d ESC with their Because of this, Soldiers wear even after I retire.”combat patches. devised a system that each corps would wear a distinctive patch on The 3d ESC’s shoulder The shoulder sleeve insig- top of their hats. When identifica- insignia represents a long historynia - former wartime service, com- tion became an issue because of for the command which includesmonly known as the combat patch, injuries or lost hats, the system participation in every Operationhas a rich history and different was revised to include the patches Iraqi Freedom rotation since 2003meanings to those authorized to on the uniform. and in Afghanistan as part of sev-wear them. But something similar eral rotations of Operation Endur-to those authorized to wear them, Over the years, this sys- ing Freedom. Campaigns to Korea,is the sense of pride and accom- tem evolved and eventually led to France, Germany and the Balkansplishment they bring. patches being worn on the left and are represented in the command’s right shoulders of the uniform, proud history. “There’s a lot of his- allowing proud veterans to displaytory dealing with the awarding of their unit patches as symbols of Comprised of three bluecombat patches to those serving prior campaigns and battles. arrows pointing outwards, repre-in combat zones,” said 1st Sgt. senting the command’s numeri-Keevin Fields, the 3d ESC’s Head- Worn on the right should of cal designation and mission toquarters and Headquarters Com- the U.S. Army uniform, the com- provide combat support whereverpany senior noncommissioned of- bat patch symbolizes a Soldiers it’s needed. The arrows and arrow-ficer. “To all of us who have served, past or active participation in war- heads are symbols frequently usedthe combat patch has many differ- time service. in U.S. Army insignia designsent meanings, but it’s always re- because they represent items usedwarding to award a young Soldier “Receiving a combat patch in warfare and defense. his/her combat patch.” is a big accomplishment for me because everyone can’t be in The red circle outlining the The history of the combat the military, and everyone can’t 3d ESC patch signifies the neverpatch dates back to the Civil War deploy and withstand the things ending valor and courage of itsand has since become a histori- that you have to go through in Soldiers. The white field representscal Army tradition. The wearing of order to get a patch,” said Pvt. 1st purity and dedication.patches in general was important Class Stephan Humes, an execu-and began out of a necessity for tive administrative assistant and3d ESC Soldiers tour water bottling facility Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, Afghanistan – Sol-diers from the 3d Sustainment Command (Expedi-tionary) toured the NATO Maintenance and SupplyAgency water bottling facility at Kandahar Air Field,Afghanistan on May 15. The Sustainers visited the water bottling facil-ity to get an assessment on the plant’s productionand distribution. The water bottling facility, which started pro-duction in March 2012, will soon become the mainsupplier of bottled water soon at KAF. “All of the technology here is very, very mod-ern,” said Larry Downes, the technical officer for thewater bottling facility. “There’s a microbiological labthat’s able to conduct water testing on-site and the Soldiers from the 3d Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) receive aquality control is excellent.” briefing on the water bottling process during a tour to the NATO Mainte- nance and Supply Agency water bottling facility at Kandahar Air Field, Afghanistan on May 15. The Sustainers visited the water bottling facility to get an assessment on the plant’s production and distribution. (U.S. Army See WATER, next page photo by Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin) Page10
  11. 11. Volume1 Sustainer June2012WATER, from previous the tour involves the formation of the facility’s water bottles. Downes explained to the Soldiers that thefacility is capable of producing 16,000 bottles when Starting with what looks similar to a testoperating at 100% capability. But as they continue tube, the bottles are heated, then blasted with air toto train and work towards becoming the main bottled form the shape we know. This design of the bottleswater supplier to KAF, the facility is currently run- was deliberate as developers sought to produce some-ning at 90 % capability, producing 14,400 bottles per thing easy to hold, store and dispose of. This way,hour. Soldiers could easily hold and store them. According to Downes, the facility’s capability Those in attendance during the tour said thatcan be expanded and production increased as it was the facility was very advanced in its operation as theybuilt with the intent for future expansion. were amazed at the total bottling process. To produce bottled water, the plant utilizes 2 “It was very interesting to see the water bot-wells which alternated between daily usage. Because tling process from start to finish,” said Sgt. 1st Classthe water is brought up from freshly dug wells, purifi- Mison Pak, the 3d ESC’s surgeon cell noncommis-cation is minimal. sioned officer in charge. “This was a very informative tour and I feel that I have a better understanding of One of the more interesting exhibits during the process as a result.”Transporters tackle new mission in Afghanistan Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin “The importance of the RPAT mission is that it allows us KANDAHAR AIR FIELD, to get equipment out of theaterAFGHANISTAN – If there’s one and to Soldiers who can use it,”thing Soldiers of the 233rd Trans- said Schwartz.portation Company know, theydefinitely know how to get heavy The retrograde missionequipment from one point to an- involves many processes, severalother in austere environments. of which are spearheaded by Sol- diers of the 233rd Trans. Co. The Whether it involved Sol- company has Soldiers who ensure Sgt. Joshua Brown, of the 233rd Transportationdiers being out on missions rang- Company, explains the equipment issuing pro- equipment is properly accounteding anywhere from days to weeks, cess to 1st Lt. Brandon Schwartz, an operations for, cleaned and free of hazardous officer with the 233rd. (U.S. Army photo by Staffthe 233rd’s Soldiers took on the Sgt. Michael Behlin) materials and munitions. Afterretrograde mission of moving these processes are completed, theSoldiers and equipment out of Iraq ing, the 233rd’s assistance in the equipment is then shipped to itswhen it deployed to Kuwait in July mission will be important to the various destinations.of 2011. successful completion of the presi- dent’s surge recovery. Though the 233rd’s new That is until a few months mission doesn’t necessarily mir-ago, when they received a change “In the RPAT yard, we’re ror what it normally entails, itsof mission - the heavy equipment responsible for theater retrograde Soldiers have adjusted well. Whiletransport company took on a ret- of the Army’s equipment, essen- many have admitted they wouldrograde mission of a different sort tially getting it from here in coun- much rather be out on the roadsearlier this year. try to repair and redistribution moving equipment, they under- centers in Kuwait or the U.S. for stand their role and its impor- Spread throughout sev- repair and redistribution,” said 1st tance.eral combat posts in Afghanistan, Lt. Brandon Schwartz, an opera-members of the 233rd Trans. Co. tions officer with the 233rd Trans. “The adjustment here hashave moved from the driver’s seat Co. currently working at the RPAT been tough, having to learn a newto more of a management role as yard at Kandahar Air Field. job in a new environment,” saidthey work in the various redistri- Staff Sgt. Anthony Jackson, anbution property assistance team, Schwartz said the RPAT operations noncommissioned of-or RPAT, yards. process is important because it ficer with the company. “It’s been allows the Army to replenish old, difficult at times not doing what With the Iraq war draw- used and battle damaged equip- you’re used to, but we’ve made thedown completed and the Afghani- ment from both the Iraq and Af- most of it.”stan drawdown closely approach- ghanistan wars. 1 Page1
  12. 12. Volume1 Sustainer June2012Changes Coming as the Army Expands Use ofEarly Discharge Authority of Regular Army Enlisted Members JSC-A Rentention Office Soldiers assigned to deploying units whose scheduled separation date precludes them from de- Congress recently amended legislation that ploying with their unit will be given the opportunityexpands the services’ authority to separate Regu- to reenlist or extend. Soldiers with more than threelar Army enlisted members from three months to years of active service, but less than six years of totalone year prior to their scheduled date of separation, service that elect not to reenlist or extend will bereferred to as Expiration Term of Service (ETS). The subject to involuntary early separation. Additionally,Army announced today that it plans to begin using commanders have the discretion to retain a soldierthis authority in June 2012 in a very targeted man- for operational necessity or compassionate reasons.ner to address readiness in deploying formations bystabilizing enlisted soldiers at least six months prior The Army has incorporated measures to en-to deployment. sure soldiers who elect not to reenlist or extend their period of enlistment complete all transition require- The Army’s Enlisted Involuntary Early Sepa- ments prior to separation including taking advantageration Program is directed towards the small per- of the Army Career and Alumni Program (ACAP) andcentage of Soldiers in deploying units who remain in other transition programs. Commanders will affordthe unit’s rear detachment due to insufficient time Soldiers sufficient time, but not less than 90 days, toremaining before ETS to complete the deployment. focus on transition activities to ensure Soldiers andThe Army will not immediately increase the period of their families are prepared for the transition from ac-early separation to one year, rather it will implement tive service.this change in a phased manner based on scheduledunit deployment dates. For more information, Soldiers should contact their unit career counselor.Female, Muslim medic spends career mending preconceptions Sgt. Ken Scar features of women, like the fa- to Iraq and a third, current one to 7th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment mous model Iman, who are native Afghanistan, where she is the non- PARWAN PROVINCE, Af- to that region. Her feisty attitude commissioned officer-in-chargeghanistan – U.S. Army Staff Sgt. belies her ethereal appearance, of the Troop Medical Clinic, 10thMuna Nur is striking for many however, and is more a testament Sustainment Brigade, Task Forcereasons. Born in Somalia, she has to her six-year military career that Muleskinner.the warm complexion and elegant includes two tough deployments “I was born in Somalia, so I’m a child of war, I guess,” she said. “When I was two months old, because of the war, my mom moved us to Kenya until I was five, and then to America – where we finally settled in Minnesota. I consider myself an American even though I wasn’t born there.” On a typical shift in the walk-in clinic on Bagram Air Field that she manages when she’s not on missions outside the wire, she can be seen ribbing her medics good-naturally like a stern mother while brandishing her “Soldier Adjustment Tool”, an organic club fashioned from a tree limb with a ball-like gourd on one end, sharp- ened to a point on the other, and decorated all over with African-U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Muna Nur, a native of St. Paul, Minn., a medic with the 10th Sustainment Bri- style etchings.gade, Task Force Muleskinner, loads her equipment into a mine-resistant ambush-protected vehiclebelonging to the Louisiana National Guard’s 1086th Transportation Company before embarking on a She gestures dramatically5-day, 400-mile convoy, May 20, 2012. The convoy went from Bagram Air Field to Forward OperatingBase Warrior and back on Afghanistan’s notorious Highway 1. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Ken Scar) See NUR, next page 12 Page
  13. 13. Volume1 Sustainer June2012NUR, from previous “I think the majority of cal patrols that travel to smaller soldiers are trained to differentiate combat outposts and bases alland threatens to use it to get her between terrorists and what Islam over Regional Command-East onsoldiers in line, but it says some- is,” she said. the most dangerous roadways inthing about her leadership that theater. Out of the 42 medics sheit was, in fact, her soldiers that That’s not to say she has is responsible for, 10 of them aregifted it to her. never heard inconsiderate com- female. ments, but as a medic who is often “I run a tight ship,” she the only female out on a mission, “If we took all our femalessays, furrowing her brow toward she knows how to brush off the off the road, the missions wouldn’teveryone in the waiting area to harsh words and posturing of happen,” she stated matter-of-fac-light-hearted laughter. some her less sensitive colleagues. tually. Nur has worked her way “My first tour of Iraq was She personally does an av-to a position that suits her well, very difficult for me,” she said. erage of three missions per month,but things have not always run so “Treating soldiers who just got hit, so she will rack up nearly 50smoothly for her. I heard the backlash, but now I missions outside the wire on this don’t take it as an attack against deployment. Another of her striking Muslims in general or me, I take isaspects is the fact that she is a as an attack against terrorists.” “She is dedicated to whatproud Muslim, a trait that has cre- she does,” said Sgt. Maj. Janiceated difficulties for her in the past Dealing with traditional Glaze, the Operations sergeant– especially after 9/11. Afghan prejudices is another major for Task Force Muleskin- thing she has learned to deal with ner. “She really has concern for “9/11 created such an awk- gracefully. soldiers, and I would speak to herward position for my family,” she courage. As a medic, she treats thesaid. “My mom is not totally reli- “Most Afghanis are il- soldiers that encounter improvisedgious, but she wears the scarves literate,” she explained. “They explosive devices. She sees theover her head, and she is very don’t read the Quran, it’s taught wounds, so she knows what canfair-skinned so she looks Arab. I to them. So for me, as a Muslim happen when you go outside thatjust remember all the comments woman who reads the Quran and wire – and yet she is never hesi-... ” she trails off, hesitant to get has my own interpretation - it can tant to go on those missions.”too specific and dredge up old be a battle.”wounds. “Once you’re outside the “You have to have a thick wire, anything can happen,” said “I said to myself, do I want skin,” she added, smiling. “You Nur. “I want the world to knowpeople to think my family is full have to know what right looks that my medics go out there andof terrorists? Do I want people to like, and be tolerant. You can’t go have to be combat soldiers, wheth-view my religion like we’re all ter- around telling people their religion er they’re male or female.”rorists? I wanted to fight back, so is wrong or they believe in falsethat’s one of the main reasons I prophets. How would you feel if I “When you go out [on thejoined [the Army].” condemned you to hell because convoys] there’s no separation. We you’re not a Muslim? I don’t be- all sleep in the same tents, or the The decision to become a lieve in that.” same trucks,” she said, addingmedic was a simpler one: “I want- with a laugh, “Once you can peeed to help people.” “More than anything, she outside or in the truck with the educates us,” explained Air Force guys, the awkwardness leaves.” Being female and a Mus- Senior Airman Natasha Whitten,lim could have been a double- one of Nur’s medics. “Like when “We are already in combat,”whammy joining the Army, whose the Qurans were burned [in Feb- said Air Force Staff Sgt. Anahipopulation is historically com- ruary], she let us know why people Pelayo, also one of Nur’s medics,prised mostly of men and sol- were so upset and what the proper referring to the debate over wheth-diers that believe in some form of way to do it would have been.” er women should be in combatChristianity – but surprisingly, the positions. “We [female medics] arediscrimination she experienced in As far as being a female not necessarily behind the weap-the civilian world was much worse in a war zone, Nur marvels at the ons, but we take care of everyonethan what she’s experienced as a fact there is any debate at all that else that is.”soldier. she or any of her female comrades belong in combat. “I love the action, and I love She credits the Army’s being out. But I always say that Iemphasis on cultural training for Every medic in her unit like to stay unemployed on mis-that. rotates from working in the clinic sions,” said Nur. to rolling with combat logisti- 13 Page
  14. 14. Volume1 Sustainer June2012Retro-Sort Yard consolidates equipment Sgt. Chris Huddleston “The Retro-Sort Yard will take all classes 45th Sustainment Brigade public affairs of supply except Class VII (real property), Class V KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – Sol- (Ammo) and scrap metal or trash,” said 1st Sgt. Rob-diers with the 45th Quartermaster (Provisional) ert Garo, senior non-commissioned officer, 45th QMCompany, 45th Sustainment Brigade, provide a place (P) Co. for units in southern Afghanistan to turn in service-able items they no longer need which can in turn “The items come from all over the Regionalbe issued to units who need them at the Kandahar Command, RC-South/Southwest/West, with mostAirfield Retro-Sort Yard. items coming from closing forward operating bases.” The goal of the Retro-Sort Yard is to reduce The yard’s free issue warehouse is open Mon-waste within the Army supply system and get un- day, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday fromneeded supplies to units who can use them. 1000-1800 and has a wide assortment of items for issue. “The Retro-Sort Yard provides a one-stop shopfor Army units to turn in excess and non-mission “There is no documentation required to pickessential equipment that has accumulated over the up any serviceable items,” said Garo. “We havepast ten years,” said Capt. Andrew Thomas, com- expendable/durable free issue, an updated itemizemander 45th QM (P) Co. “We then redistribute these listing is published weekly for anyone to see what’ssupplies to units that require them locally or return available to pick up in support of their mission.them to the Army supply system, negating the needfor the Army to purchase more stocks and saving For example; paper cups, plates, large trash,tax-payer money.” motor oil, safety cones, wall lockers, copy paper and more.” Units located in RC-South, Southwest andWest can bring items to the yard 24 hours a day, 7 The KAF Retro-Sort Yard is located in thedays a week. Deep South Area.Spc. Orlando Peyton logs in a new shipment of items at his work station at the Kandahar Airfield Retro-Sort Yard. The Retro-Sort Yard provides a central-ized location for units in RC-South, RC-Southwest, and RC-West to turn in items and equipment that is no longer needed that other units in the area canthen put to use. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Chris Huddleson) Page14
  15. 15. Volume1 C  C Bouncing Back Sustainer June2012 Joint Sustainment Command - Afghanistan Master Resiliency Trainer A H P C  Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, your federal medical school, Bethesda, Maryland • www. Helping Children Cope During Deployment This fact sheet contains useful information opportunities for families to grow closer and stronger.for you — parents and family caregivers — to The best way to help children cope is to 1) reassurehelp children cope during a parents’ deployment. them that the deployed parent is trained to do his/herExperts in military medicine and family trauma job; 2) explain to children that they, too, have a job aswho understand the impact of deployment on part of the family at home who supports our troopsfamilies have written this fact sheet. It is in the and our nation; and, 3) communicate in ways thatform of commonly asked questions followed by children can understand according to their age (seetheir responses. It is important to remember that sidebar on page 2: Communicating with Childrenwhile deployments are stressful, they also provide during Deployment).Commonly Asked Questions from Parents Q. Are there ways to reduce stress on childrenAbout Deployment during the separation? A. Yes, one very positive way is emphasize to your childrenQ. What is the best way to prepare children for that they have a job that is as REAL as that of the deployeddeployment? parent. Stress is often the result of feeling helpless or unsureA. Parents must be honest, and focus on their children’s or unclear about a new role or situation. It is important tosafety, security and continuity of routine. If deployment reinforce that doing well in school, helping out at home andwill change the child’s lifestyle such as moving, living with being cooperative is a skill set that is part of their job, onegrandparents, or changing childcare, school or community that is valued and unique to their being a military child.activities, the child needs to hear of these things in advance. When children do their job they help support their parent’s mission.Q. How else can we reassure our children about adeployment? Q. How should school problems be handled?A. First, parents should digest the information before they A. If there is concern about a child’s behavior at home,communicate it to children so they can deliver it in a calm parents should notify the school. Many parents may beand reassuring manner. Second, children worry about the reluctant to call attention to their child by warning schoolsafety of the deployed parent. It is important to let children officials, but it is important for the school to be alert toknow that the deployed parent is trained to do their job. any unusual symptoms. If a child has had psychiatricThird, it is important to communicate in a way that your issues before the deployment they are more likely to havechild will understand based on their age. problems as a result of the deployment. It is important to talk to your child about any acting out, and get them toQ. How do children signal their distress? discuss their feelings and issues. Your child’s school or yourA. Stress affects children like it does adults. Children primary care doctor can arrange for counseling services.may complain of headaches, stomach distress and sleepdisturbances. They may display moodiness, irritability, General Tips for Communicating with Childrenlow energy, and have more dramatic reactions to minor of All Agessituations such as stubbing a toe. It can be difficult ■ Be careful about sharing your emotions with children.sometimes to sort out normal distress and more serious Some parents share too much (losing control in frontproblems. If in doubt, seek medical advice. of kids) or share too little (no emotion or giving the Continued on reverse side Page15
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  17. 17. Volume1 Sustainer June2012Life around Kandahar: Photos from Facebook Photos by Staff Sgt. Michael Behlin 17 Page
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