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    Army Reserve unit provides ammo supply, entertainment to troops during deployment



    Story by Sgt. Rob Cooper 

    Camp Atterbury Public Affairs

    By Sgt. Robert G. Cooper III
    Camp Atterbury Public Affairs

    CAMP ATTERBURY, Ind. – More than 40 of America's finest have returned to Puerto Rico this week following a yearlong deployment to Iraq. Soldiers from the 266th Ordnance Company, U.S. Army Reserves, concluded their debriefings here on Jan. 27, which paved the way for their return home.

    During their deployment, the unit, which is headquartered in Aguadilla, P.R., served at Contingency Operating Base Q-West, Iraq, where they provided ammunition supply and distribution. The ammunition included small arms, ordnance, shoulder-fired rockets and missiles.

    In addition to providing the ammo to the units in the surrounding areas, members of the 266th oversaw ammo shipments to all of Northern Iraq and Afghanistan, said Sgt. Yassir Colon, an ammo specialist with the 266th.

    Colon, a native of Manati, P.R., said that the unit was deployed to Q-West in 2004 and the contrast in deployments was evident. "Back in 2004, we used to get attacked daily, maybe 20 to 30 times," he said. "It was crazy that year. It was a lot better this time. Q-West is a pretty quiet place."

    Besides their primary mission of supplying ammunition, the unit also improved many facets of the ammo supply operations on post, said Ammunition Specialist Sgt. Andres Gonzalez.

    "When we first arrived there, [the installation] was in the process of expanding our ammo supply point," Gonzalez said. "We were the first unit to build new expansions since we were here in 2004, adding concrete buildings, even a break room."

    Gonzalez said that the unit helped save the Army money because members of the unit built the break room without any assistance from local contractors.

    "We used wood from the scrap yard, which saved about $20,000 since that was how much contractors would have charged to build it themselves," he said.

    The unit also helped to increase the morale of troops on post by creating a number of ethnic festivals, events and other activities. "We created a number of events, from Spanish Week and African Heritage to Latino dancing nights," Colon said.

    Colon said that the success of his unit's mission is measured in their lack of any ammunition discrepancies as well as a unit award they received while in Iraq.

    "We were awarded a ribbon for our unit guidon for 90 days without any accident or incidents," Colon said. "We were the only company within our battalion that achieved that."



    Date Taken: 01.29.2009
    Date Posted: 01.29.2009 19:47
    Story ID: 29430
    Location: CAMP ATTERBURY, IN, US 

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