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    179th Airlift Wing assists in Hurricane Relief in Puerto Rico

    179th Airlift Wing use DRMKT to feel relief workers in Puerto Rico

    Photo By Capt. Paul Stennett | The 179th Airlift Wing along with Airmen from the 178th Wing, Springfield, Ohio,...... read more read more



    Story by Airman 1st Class Megan Shepherd 

    179th Airlift Wing

    Members of the 179th Airlift Wing, Mansfield, Ohio, are utilizing a Disaster Relief Mobile Kitchen Trailer (DRMKT) while deployed to Puerto Rico.

    The DRMKT is a portable kitchen unit that is capable of preparing 1,000 meals in about 90 minutes. Both Air Force and Army members currently assigned to the Parque Yldefonso Solá Morales in Caguas are benefitting from this efficient method of food production.

    When the team first started they were serving around 400 meals per day and that number increased to more than 800 during their time there.
    While the team was there, they cooked and served more than 9,400 meals.

    Then, the DRMKT was handed off to another team of services’ personnel to continue cooking the hot meals.

    When Airmen first arrived at the multi-use stadium they had to overcome several challenges. Hurricane Maria knocked out a majority of Puerto Rico’s power and water supply, so the team did not have adequate supplies when they got there. It took them a few days to coordinate with the right people and acquire the things they needed to accomplish their mission.

    They worked closely with the Puerto Rican Army Joint Force Headquarters leadership and the local 190th Engineer Battalion, to obtain mission specific equipment to allow for optimal field cooking operations, said Capt. Evan Howard, the Services Flight officer in charge at the 179th AW.

    They also had to work on DRMKT technical issues with help from Army engineers and electricians from the 59th Troop Command, South Carolina.
    The professional relationships that have been built from being here will continue long after cleanup is complete.

    The Puerto Rican Army National Guard Soldiers are very grateful to be able to help out and are very appreciative for the support being provided, said Howard.

    These relationships help build more effective teams and provide more efficient means of getting troops what they need.

    “This operation is very specific and relevant to the ground support initiatives,” said Howard. “The energy from the DRMKT team or self-proclaimed “Hurricane Warriors” is a relief to the engineers who have been out all day conducting missions.”

    Situations like this are what these service members train for. The mission is always to maintain readiness, be prepared and have the proper training so that when the time comes they can have quick responses and send sufficient assistance to wherever it is needed. This is why America has a national guard.



    Date Taken: 11.04.2017
    Date Posted: 11.22.2017 10:43
    Story ID: 255418
    Location: MANSFIELD, OH, US 

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