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    RSC-Southwest says farewell to mentors, friends during humble ceremony

    Relief ceremony

    Photo By Bill Putnam | Afghan National Army Maj. Gen. Sayed Malook, left, the commander of the ANA 215th...... read more read more

    “Today we are losing one of our friends. Lt. Col. Luke Kratky and his team worked really hard. He helped us with getting all these nice facilities that we see today, and also helped us to get supplies,” said Sayeed Malook. “I hope his replacement follows his steps and keep the work as it was going.”

    ANA Lt. Col. Aslam, an officer with the RLSC and master of ceremonies, said Kratky and his joint team of Marines, soldiers, and sailors were famous around the headquarters of the 215th Corps.

    “Thank you very much for the hard work of Lt. Col. Kratky and his team,” said Aslam.

    There wasn’t a true American-style passing of a unit guidon. Kratky and Valle simply marched up one at a time, saluted Aslam and took up a position in the reviewing area.
    They each gave speeches; Kratky in Dari and Valle in both English and Dari.

    Kratky, who read his speech in Dari, said he was proud of the ANA. The RLSC, an above corps logistics and maintenance unit, had come a long way since being formed in early 2012.

    “You have demonstrated the potential of the country that nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself,” Kratky said. “You know what it feels like to win.”

    “Seek your advisors opinion as a last, not as a first option because you know what right looks like,” he advised.

    Kratky and his team of just under 40 U.S. service members arrived at Camp Shorabak in early 2012 and essentially started the ANA’s RLSC. The RLSC Advising Team helped form an above corps unit that learned as it went. The advisors took separate units and helped mold them into one unit that supports all ANA in Helmand and Nimroz provinces. They’ve helped the ANA set up supply stores, helped run supply convoys to the brigades of the 215th Maiwand Corps, and helped start a comprehensive maintenance system for vehicles.

    The key to gaining that success was letting the Afghans “run with the ball,” Kratky said in an interview a few weeks ago.

    Since September 2011, the RLSC has run more than 45 resupply missions to the corps’ brigades. They’ve built up approximately $47,000,000 in supplies on hand on Camp Shorabak. They’re running their own junior noncommissioned officer courses and their own drivers training courses. Damaged vehicles are being tracked by the ANA from the beginning to the end of the repair process; vehicles that can’t be repaired on Shorabak are convoyed to the ANA’s central maintenance facility in Kabul. The advisors also helped the RSLC move into and set up a new series of buildings, like where the ceremony was held.

    All of that was accomplished by the ANA in such a short time because Kratky’s team gave them the ball, Kratky noted.

    Valle, in a short speech, said he was looking forward to continuing the work.

    “This past week and a half have opened our eyes and shown us all the hard work that has been accomplished by you,” Valle said of Kratky and his team. “Our advisor team will continue this and share in your success.”



    Date Taken: 11.26.2012
    Date Posted: 12.02.2012 03:30
    Story ID: 98612
    Location: CAMP SHORABAK, AF 

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