JTF Katrina HQ moves to Lafayette, La.

Story by Maj. Jay R. Adams
13th COSCOM Public Affairs Office

The 13th Corps Support Command, currently serving as the Joint Logistics Command, Joint Task Force-Katrina moved its tactical command post to the Lafayette, La. airport Sunday.

The COSCOM will split its staff to continue ongoing support in New Orleans under Joint Task Force-Katrina while supporting relief Hurricane Rita relief efforts out of Lafayette.

The JLC's mission in Lafayette is to serve as the single focal point for logistics.

"The JLC will provide technical expertise on establishing regional staging areas to support communities affected by Hurricane Rita," said Col. Christine M. Gayagas, 13th COSCOM and JLC Chief of Staff.

We'll continue to work for Lt. Gen. (Russel L.) Honore and collaborate with FEMA, the National Guard, specifically the 41st Bde out of Oregon and local communities as required," said Gayagas.

Elements of the 1st Medical Brigade, 64th Corps Support Group, 4th Corps Material Management Center, the 49th Movement Control Battalion, Special Troops Battalion, and attached units from the 81st Reserve Support Command remain in Louisiana conducting relief operations following Hurricane Katrina.

A COSCOM assessment team arrived in Lafayette within hours after Rita passed to coordinate with local, state and National Guard officials on humanitarian requirements.

Support currently provided includes, water purification, transportation, preventive medicine, distribution management and debris removal.

JTF-Katrina is the united response to Hurricane Katrina and the devastation it caused to the Gulf Region. The JLC supports all federal military forces and assists civil and NG authorities in coordinating relief supplies.

"We're continuing to operate as part of JTF-K and will continue to close out tasks in New Orleans but will shift our focus to Southwest Louisiana and assist those communities," said Gayagas.

"The COSCOM brings leadership, organization and dedicated communications to a crisis situation," said Kenneth S. Lundgren, JLC operations officer.

"I think the JLC is the way to bring the national logistics assets to the fight and have a way to use all the resources we have to focus on the commander's priorities, said Air Force Maj. Philip M. Calvano, a Joint Forces Command logistics observer/trainer and Air Force liaison to the JLC.

"It makes it easier for the joint commander to reach in and find what he needs," said Calvano.

"This has been a great opportunity to help our fellow Americans and continue training and exercising our staff," said Gayagas.

The COSCOM will continue operating as the JLC until local, state and NG authorities are fully established and capable and the JTF-K commander orders its redeployment.