Local airfield control group supports CJTF-HOA;

21 May 2003 | Cpl. Paula M. Fitzgerald

The Arrival/Departure Airfield Control Group (ADACG) here supported nearly 500 fixed wing and rotary aircraft flights for Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa and others since CJTF-HOA arrived in December.

ADACG also provided more than 8 million lbs. of fuel for aircraft here.

"We take care of passengers coming in and leaving, cargo that needs to be loaded or unloaded, and fuel for the aircraft," said Gunnery Sgt. Tim J. Sawicki, the movement control staff noncommissioned officer for Command Logistics Element, Marine Central Command.

Part of the ADACG's responsibilities included coordinating flights for personnel and cargo leaving or going to USS Mount Whitney, the former command flagship of CJTF-HOA, which left for its homeport in Norfolk, Va., May 17.

"We had nearly 300 flights and almost 3,000 (people) come in from the ship while it was in the theater," stated Sawicki.

During the task force's transition from the ship to the camp here, Sawicki and the team at the ADACG played a crucial role because they were in charge of making sure the people and cargo arrived on time.

He added with a chuckle, "I have to admit that I'm glad to see the ship pull out. They kept us up working late nights several times."

ADACG also assisted approximately 200 flights for other units in the area as well as the arrival of Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron- 461, assigned here in support of CJTF-HOA. The squadron arrived via C-5 Galaxy aircraft, one of the world's largest planes.

"We are also the re-supply point for many of the ships that come through here," said Sawicki. "We work closely with Navy supply expediters that inform us what supplies are coming in and to which ships they go to."

They are currently supporting four U.S. Naval ships - USS Anzio, USS Vandergrift, USS Gary and USS Arleigh Burke.

At one point, the ADACG was supporting a total of 10 ships, a feat that Sawicki described as "a lot of hard work."

To successfully complete missions of this magnitude, Sawicki and the rest of the ADACG team have had to forge a good relationship. Sawicki is the only military representative working at the ADACG, which is controlled by contract workers from Kellogg, Brown and Root (KBR).

KBR has provided the bulk of logistics services for the Army since 1992. Whenever U.S. service members deploy, they build the barracks, cook the food, mop the floors, transport the goods and maintain the water systems before and after the troops arrive.

Dave L. Woodley, the transportation manager for KBG, explained their employees' jobs range from material handling specialists and truck drivers to cargo specialists.

This team also includes host-nation contract workers.

The good relationship between the two entities helps to get all of the ADACG's various missions accomplished with little or no problem.

"It's a lot of work what we do here at the ADACG, but we all have the same basic background. We just work together and get our stuff done," Sawicki concluded.
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