COSCOM on the go

Story by Sgt. Joel F. Gibson
13th COSCOM Public Affairs Office

FORT HOOD, TEXAS — When it comes to major deployments, the headlines often show entire divisions deploying en masse. At Fort Hood we've seen the 1st Cavalry Division and 4th Infantry Division depart in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, but we've never seen the 13th Corps Support Command deploy as a group.why not?

The 13th COSCOM deploys all the time, in groups ranging from a Movement Control Team from the 49th Transportation Battalion, to an entire brigade like the 1st Medical Brigade.

The mission the COSCOM conducts does not lend to the entire unit deploying as a group, but to attaching portions of itself to other deploying or deployed units as need dictates.

One of the largest parts of the COSCOM, the 64th Corps Support Group deployed in August to augment the 3rd Corps Support Command's mission of providing logistical support to the entire theater of operations in Iraq.

In November, the 1st Medical Brigade cased its colors and deployed to provide medical support during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

The 64th CSG and 1st Medical Brigade represent huge portions of the COSCOM.

By contrast to these large portions of the COSCOM, individual companies like the 53rd Quartermaster Company, and notably, the 96th Transportation Company deploy in support of Operation Enduring Freedom all the time.

The 96th is currently on its 4th deployment in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The 96th is probably one of the most deployed units in the Army, said Brig. Gen Michael J. Terry, commanding general of the COSCOM.

A Company is not the smallest unit the COSCOM will deploy on its own.

Soldiers of the 1st Platoon, 664th Ordnance Company, 553rd Corps Support Battalion, 64th Corps Support Group, 13th Corps Support Command, deployed for Iraq in October in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

The platoon is providing ammunition support to units in Iraq and make ammunition deliveries to various military locations within the region, said 1st Lt. Willie Garris, 664th executive officer who is deploying with the platoon.

During the months following Hurricane Katrina, the COSCOM deployed many units to support the Joint Logistics Command, Joint Task Force Katrina.

Headquarters and Headquarters Company, Special Troops Battalion, 13th COSCOM deployed to form the headquarters of the JLC, JTF-K.

The 21st Combat Support Hospital took over medical operations for one of the hospitals knocked out of commission by floodwaters.

Movement Control Teams from the 49th MCB facilitated the flow of donated supplies.

The 565th Quartermaster Company set up a warehouse system to organize donated police equipment, organizing the New Orleans Police Department Quartermaster Activity.

The different specialized skill sets the units of the COSCOM possess lend to them being very effective when used in small groups.

"This mission is tailor made for my company," said Capt. Burr H. Miller, commanding officer of the 565th. "The police tried but they don't have the skill sets. The street yesterday was packed. You couldn't even drive. My guys have been down here only 2 days and they got this stuff organized."


13th COSCOM HHC deploys to New Orleans in support of JTF Katrina.
13th COSCOM HHC deploys to New Orleans in support of JTF Katrina.