13th SC(E) Returns Home

By: Spc. Fabian Ortega
13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) PAO

Fort Hood welcomed home its third largest subordinate command, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), in a redeployment ceremony at Kieshnick Physical Fitness Center Aug. 12. 

More than 130 Soldiers from the 13th SC (E) returned home from a year long deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom; among the returning Soldiers was commanding general of the 13th SC (E), Brig. Gen. Michael J. Terry and his staff, who were received by Brig. Gen. Frederick Rudesheim, III Corps rear commanding general and hundreds of friends and family members.

“Walking into this gym for this ceremony and getting the response from all of our Families, friends and the community, could only be described in one word, it’s a rush,” said Terry. “The Soldiers are pretty tired from the days of traveling and waiting to get back home and you walk in and you hear that, it’s a rush, it really is,” he said.

Since early Aug., more than 600 Soldiers from the 13th SC (E) headquarters unit and 4th Corps Materiel Management Center, 13th SC (E) have returned home from the Arabian Peninsula in support of OIF.

Our formation is 21, 000 Soldiers, 7 brigades, 30 battalions, 480 companies; they supported more than 150 thousand coalition forces, said Terry, who addressed the crowd of family members and friends at the redeployment ceremony.

“They did a magnificent job,” added Terry.

Soon after casing their colors at Fort Hood in July of 2006, the 13th SC (E) deployed as the senior logistics headquarters for Multi-national Corps in August 2006. The 13th SC (E) had seven subordinate brigades with more than 30 battalions and more than 20,000 Soldiers, providing logistical support and security throughout the theater of operations.

“Ladies and gentlemen, thank you, thank you for supporting your Soldiers, our Soldiers,” Terry said to those in attendance. “Thanks to the community out there for everything you’ve done for our Soldiers and their families, we could not have [had a successful deployment] with out you.” 

The 13th SC (E) mission was to provide maintenance, water, fuel, food, ammunition to all coalition forces throughout the theater of operations, in doing so they reached a few milestones.

13th SC (E) Soldiers delivered 584 million gallons of fuel, one million cases of Meals Ready to Eat, three billion gallons of bulk water, 28 million cases of bottled water, 16,000 tons of ice, 10,000 tons of ammunition, $2.2 billion in Class IX in support of Coalition Forces and 20 Brigade Combat Teams and drove 19.6 million miles to accomplish the mission.

In addition to their doctrinal mission, 13th SC (E) Soldiers provided more than 115,000 cases of Halal meals and 740,000 cases of bottled water in Humanitarian Aid.

“It’s been a long year and a very active year in Iraq,” Terry said. “Our command, the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) [was] responsible for all the logistics operations in Iraq, supporting all the forces involved in combat, every single day and every night,” he said. 

“We were a logistics formation plus we had combat units in our formation as well, everyday there was high energy and a lot of hard work,” Terry said. 

Terry spoke highly of the Soldiers he served with while in Iraq, particularly the junior Soldiers and leaders in his formation.

“It just amazes me about the number of people that have come in our Army since [9/11], and continue to come into our formation, frankly that humbles me,” said Terry. “I’m humbled to part of their formation.” “Their smart, brave, hard working and they won’t let America down,” he said.

“So our mission is complete, we changed the mission over to the unit behind us, on the 8th of August, now we just have make sure our Soldiers get reintegrated well with our families.”

When asked how it felt to finally be home, Terry replied, “Feels great, it always does.”

“Last year, probably the quickest year in our lives, it’s great to be home, it’s great to be back in Texas.”