News: 209th ASB awarded Combat Service Support Battalion of the Year
Story by Capt. Richard Barker
WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii – The 209th Aviation Support Battalion, 25th Combat Aviation Brigade, received the Lt. Gen. Ellis D. Parker Award in the Combat Service Support Category during a ceremony March 25 on Wheeler Army Airfield for their outstanding support of the 25th Combat Aviation Brigade during the Brigade’s year-long deployment to Afghanistan.
Commander of the Army Aviation Center of Excellence Maj. Gen. Kevin W. Mangum presented the Award to 209th ASB Commander Lt. Col. Keriem Kvalevog during the morning ceremony held in 209th ASB.
“Winning the award shows the dedication, professionalism and hard work the soldiers put forth every day,” said Kvalevog, originally from Brockville, Ind. “I am in awe and humbled by what they do. Each and every soldier played a role in winning the award.”
The Lt. Gen. Ellis D. Parker Award is a Department of the Army level award that recognizes excellence at the battalion level, the primary war fighting aviation force. The 209th ASB was selected in recognition of the 209th soldiers' efforts and sense of mission accomplishment.
“It feels pretty great to receive this award,” said Sgt. 1st Class Jose Moreno, the electronic warfare noncommissioned officer for 209th ASB, originally from Fontana, Calif. “This is a great accomplishment for the battalion and just one more piece of evidence the hard work we did paid off.”
In addition to providing support to the other battalions of the 25th CAB during deployment, 209th ASB was instrumental in training and certifying Afghan soldiers of the Kandahar Air Wing, the aviation attack and support force of Southern Afghanistan.
The training and certification included several programs that gave Afghan soldiers valuable skills including wheeled vehicle maintenance, fork lift operations, drivers training and aviation maintenance.
The Lt. Gen. Ellis D. Parker Award is one of many awards received by soldiers and units of the 25th CAB as a result of their efforts in Afghanistan. The Army Aviation Association of America has awarded 25th CAB soldiers in 2012 with the Henry Q Dunn Crew Chief of the Year Award, Rodney J.T. Yano NCO of the Year Award, Medicine Award, DUSTOFF Medic of the Year Award, Aircraft Survivability Equipment Award and the 2012 Avionics Award.