About 13th ESC
The 13th Expeditionary Sustainment Command was activated in September 1965 at Ford Hood, Texas as the 13th Support Brigade. As the Nation's involvement in Vietnam increased, it was tasked with training technical services units to assume combat service support missions in Southeast Asia.
The unit continued to evolve in the years following due to increased missions and changing roles and in 1980 was re-designated as the 13th Support Command (Corps), then as the 13th Corps Support Command (COSCOM) in March 1989. As part of Army Transformation, the 13th Expeditionary Sustainment Command was reflagged in its current configuration on February 16, 2006.
Soldiers of the 13th ESC first deployed to Managua, Nicaragua to assist in earthquake disaster relief from December 23, 1972 to January 15, 1973.
In the fall of 1990, units from the 13th ESC deployed to Saudi Arabia to provide combat support and combat service support during Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. During Operation Desert Calm and Operation Provide Comfort, 13th ESC Soldiers served proudly in the Persian Gulf.
In 1992, 13th ESC Soldiers deployed to Cuba to aid Haitian refugees during Operation Safe Harbor, and later assisted victims of Hurricane Andrew in Florida. Soldiers of the 13th ESC also led the way as III Corps units deployed to Kuwait to train and ensure the peace in support of Operation Intrinsic Action.
Responding to the declining situation in Somalia in 1992, the U.S. Central Command established United Task Force Somalia (UNITAF), and the 13th ESC was called to duty again. The command group and headquarters deployed to Mogadishu to serve as the nucleus of Joint Task Force Support Command, redeploying in May 1993.
From 1994 through 1998, the 13th ESC conducted numerous operations across a wide span of operational assignments by providing multifunctional sustainment support to Army Forces supporting Operation Vigilant Warrior in Kuwait; humanitarian and peacekeeping missions in Cuba as part of Operation Sea Signal V; Operation Uphold Democracy in Haiti; support to Operation Strong Support as part of Joint Task Force-Bravo following Hurricane Mitch in Honduras; and as part of Stabilization Force (SFOR) 6 in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The 13th ESC also deployed their engineers to Thule, Greenland during this time for additional support missions.
Following the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon on September 11, 2001, the 13th ESC would be called upon yet again to support the Global War on Terror.
Operation Iraqi Freedom saw elements of the 13th ESC deployed including the 64th Corps Support Group, directly supporting the 4th Infantry Division. Elements of the 49th Movement Control Battalion had been continuously deployed in the region since 1997 and remained a critical node supporting all U.S. and coalition forces in theater.
The 13th ESC first deployed a Medical Evacuation Headquarters and an Air Evacuation Company on February 12, 2003, to Kuwait. Eventually, the 13th ESC deployed both of its brigades in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom while the headquarters and separate units supported the Families at Ft Hood.
In August 2003, the call came for the Soldiers of the 13th ESC headquarters to participate in ongoing operations in Iraq. In preparation for its first major deployment since Somalia, the 13th ESC colors were cased on December 18, 2003.
On January 31, 2004, the 13th ESC completed a transfer of authority with the 3rd Corps Support Command at Logistics Support Area (LSA) Anaconda in Balad, Iraq, and assumed command and control to provide sustainment support to Coalition Joint Task Force 7; later re-designated as the Multinational Corps – Iraq (MNC-I). During its time at LSA Anaconda, the 13th ESC processed 2,000 tons of mail; conducted a total of 62,000 convoys, involving 750,000 vehicles; and was responsible for quality of life improvements for all joint forces they supported. On December 12, 2004, the 13th ESC bid farewell to LSA Anaconda as it transferred authority to the 1st Corps Support Command.
In the midst of deploying and redeploying in support of the War on Terror, elements of 13th ESC were called into action in support of Joint Task Force Katrina/Rita hurricane relief efforts in the summer of 2005. During this critical mission, the 13th ESC provided 100 million rations; was responsible for human remains collection; executed emergency engineering operations; and transported, distributed and stored over $1 billion in humanitarian relief from both non-governmental and federal sources from across the Nation.
On July 13, 2006, the 13th ESC cased their colors once again in preparation for deployment to LSA Anaconda in support of OIF 06-08, departing from Fort Hood on August 22, 2006. During this deployment, the 13th ESC had seven subordinate brigades with more than 30 battalions and over 20,000 Soldiers, providing sustainment support and security throughout the theater of operations. On August 8, 2007, the 13th ESC bid farewell to LSA Anaconda for a second time, transferring authority to the 316th Expeditionary Sustainment Command.
Upon return from OIF 06-08, the 13th ESC completed its transformation from a legacy COSCOM structure to the modular ESC structure through the realignment of the 2nd Chemical Battalion under the 48th Chemical Brigade and the inactivation of the former COSCOM Special Troops Battalion (STB) and the 4th Corps Materiel Management Center.
On July 17, 2009, the 13th ESC headquarters again deployed to Iraq to Joint Base Balad (formerly LSA Anaconda) and assumed the mission for all theater logistics. During this deployment, the 13th ESC was faced with the largest movement of American forces and military equipment in more than 40 years to facilitate a responsible withdrawal from the Iraq theater. Over the course of its year-long deployment, the 13th ESC brought more than $1 billion worth of equipment back into the U.S. Army supply system.
In December of 2011, the 13th ESC command group and portions of the headquarters company deployed to Afghanistan as augmentees to the NATO Training Mission - Afghanistan. Upon arrival, deployed members of the unit integrated into the Deputy Command of Support Operations and served both in the headquarters of the directorate at Camp Eggers in Kabul, as well as in all five regional support commands across the country, conducting logistics training and mentoring of Afghan partners.
In December 2014, the 13th ESC headquarters deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, to assume the role as the Operational Command Post for the 1st Theater Sustainment Command, with the mission to provide Theater Sustainment Mission Command to Army, Joint, and Multinational Forces in the USCENTCOM Area of Responsibility, enabling Unified Land Operations and Theater Security Cooperation. The 13th ESC supported Operations Inherent Resolve (Iraq), Freedom Sentinel (Afghanistan), Spartan Shield (Kuwait), provided logistics and sustainment support and oversight to the Multinational Forces and Observer mission - Task Force Sinai, supported USCENTCOM forward elements in Jordan, and worked in cooperation with Combined Joint Interagency Task Force - Syria (CJIATF-S) to provide support to moderate Syrian opposition forces in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.
The 13th ESC redeployed in August 2015, reassuming their stateside mission for III Corps at Fort Hood, Texas.
Currently, the 13th ESC consists of a headquarters element and two Corps support battalions: the 49th Transportation Battalion (Movement Control) and the 61st Quartermaster Battalion (Petroleum Supply). The unit coordinates and provides sustainment support to all III Corps units across the Corps area of responsibility and provides reinforcing support to the Fort Hood Directorate of Logistics.