News: Not the average rodeo
Story by Sgt. Daniel Schroeder
KANDAHAR AIRFIELD, Afghanistan – On Aug. 15, soldiers from Task Force Wings competed in a Unit Movement Officer Rodeo to build the skills necessary for a successful redeployment from Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan.
More than 87 soldiers came from three other forward operating bases to participate in this training and included all task forces in TF Wings. The soldiers were broken down by task force for the rodeo.
“Our intent for this was to train the representatives on the procedures and logistics so we can fix whatever issue we might have before we begin to redeploy,” said Staff Sgt. Julius Thomas, 25th CAB Mobility non-commissioned officer-in-charge, originally from Dumas, Ark. “The soldiers were motivated to do this training and were willing to learn.”
During the training event, movement experts from across Kandahar trained the soldiers in tasks from several areas including automated air load planning system, customs joint inspections, inspecting containers for sea worthiness, properly labeling hazardous material for shipment, weighing and marking procedures for vehicles, and transportation coordinator’s Automated Information for Movements System II.
The soldiers executed scenarios they will undoubtedly face during the upcoming redeployment process included finding the center of balance and weighing a humvee with trailer and locating and completing all documents, labels, and certificates for all equipment.
“The intent was incredible,” said Staff Sgt. Joshua Moonan, 2nd Squadron, 6th Cavalry Regiment Safety non-commissioned officer, originally from Austin, Texas. “I like the way they integrated everything so we could see how it all developed together. The instructors were extremely knowledgeable.”
The instructors for the event were supported by the Air Force, Coast Guard, military police, and Department of the Army employees for each system.
“The instructors were not afraid to take the time to help us before the problem got big,” said Moonan. “The instructors helped us get a better overview of the big picture and how it all fits together.”
One of the main four areas for this training was on the TC-AIMS II, which the Army uses to manage equipment and personnel deploying in and out of theater with.
“The training is very important,” Thomas said. “Other brigades are moving at the same time we are trying to redeploy. It is important to have this training that will allow for a smoother transition back home.”
The rodeo gave the soldiers the opportunity to ask questions to the same experts they will coordinate with during redeployment while also performing hands on training.
“This will help me be a better leader,” Moonan said. “Leaders have to be able to solve problems. Seventy percent of any problem is knowing the right questions to ask; this class provides that knowledge.”