News: Arrival-Departure Airfield Control Group Marines essential to cargo, personnel transportation
Story by Cpl. Daniel Flynn
CAMP DWYER, Afghanistan — Every Marine, depending on their occupational field, has a different mission to complete, but all have one thing in common. Everything they do is in support of combat operations.
The Marines who make up Camp Dwyer's Arrival/Departure Airfield Control Group play a very important role in supporting combat operations here in southern Afghanistan.
"What we do is facilitate the logistical throughput of personnel and cargo," said Staff Sgt. Brian Housel, A-DACG staff non-commissioned officer in charge, Combat Logistics Battalion 8, "Meaning we get the Marines into the fight, and then get them the supplies they need to stay in the fight."
The A-DACG currently has the capability to handle half a dozen helicopters at once, transporting supplies and personnel. They also have several different types of missions which they perform as part of their duties.
According to Lance Cpl. Andrew Kenna, landing support specialist with the A-DACG, they handle Helicopter Support Team missions. HST missions are manned by the landing support specialists who hook cargo — such as water, food and ammo — externally to helicopters for rapidly delivery to the Marines on the ground.
"It is an exiting job," said Kenna, "especially doing the HST missions. It feels good knowing I am helping the grunts."
The Clifton Park, N.Y., native added, they also assist in the transportation of Marines to the fight. The Camp Dwyer A-DACG Marines facilitated the movement of Companies E and F with 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment, during the initiation of Operation Khanjar July 2 when units with Regimental Combat Team 3 conducted the largest helicopter insertion since the Vietnam War into the Helmand River valley.
Currently, the A-DACG Marines work with just helicopters, but with the C-130 landing strip soon to be operational, they will open a second A-DACG and start handling fixed-wing aircraft as well, according to Cpl. Andrew Nutting, non-commissioned officer in charge of the A-DACG.
There are a few differences between working with rotary-wing and fixed-wing aircraft, according to Nutting. The Rumney, N.H., native said, the biggest difference between the two is the quantity of cargo they can transport.
With the KC-130s, more cargo can be moved at once, but they can only process one plane at a time. Helicopters can't take as much cargo, but the A-DACG can handle several of the aircraft at the same time, added Nutting.
Housel added, "The C-130s will provide an increased capability to transport personnel and supplies."
When the C-130 landing strip is fully operational, it will allow the helicopters the ability to transport more cargo to the Marines who need it by moving it directly from Camp Dwyer, which is closer to many of the Marines in the fight than Camp Leatherneck.
While the Marines of the A-DACG may not be on the front lines battling insurgents, the job they do here everyday has a great effect on those who are in the fight.
This work, Arrival-Departure Airfield Control Group Marines essential to cargo, personnel transportation, by Cpl Daniel Flynn, identified by DVIDS, is free of known copyright restrictions under U.S. copyright law.