COSCOM Redesignated as 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary)

Story by Pfc. Crystal D. Eldridge
13th SC (E) Public Affairs Office

FORT HOOD, Texas — The 13th Corps Support Command became the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) during a reorganization and redesignation ceremony on the 13th SC(E) Guidon Field here Feb. 23.

The command's latest redesignation is part of an Army-wide transformation to improve the Army for generations to come, said Col. Laurie F. Sattler, Deputy Commander of the 13th SC(E). This transformation enables units to deploy more rapidly and provides more flexibility in troop movement and command.

"Today we change not only the name of our organization, but our structure, to eliminate layers, become more efficient, in order to provide the common foot soldier what he or she needs to fight and win," said Sattler.

The SC(E)'s mission is to continue to provide the best support for Soldiers as quickly and effectively as possible. To do this, the command reconfigured to better support the Army's new modular brigade combat teams.

As part of the reorganization, some units within the command are integrating to improve the command's efficiency.

The 4th Corps Materiel Management Center, 49th Movement Control Battalion and the headquarters support operations section will consolidate their planning efforts and logistics command and control capabilities to become the Distribution Management Center.

"We are the first Corps Support Command in the Army to restructure to a Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) and deploy to combat," said Sattler. "The eyes of the Army and the world will look to us as the example of what a sustainment command can and must do."

"Our staff, led by our Chief of Staff, Col. Chris Gayagas, and subordinate commanders, has planned this transition with painstaking detail," the deputy commander said. "I cannot imagine a better group of Soldiers to lead the way in this necessary transformation."

Many of the command's Soldiers are already providing this support on the battlefield. At any given time, roughly one-third of the 13th SC(E)'s Fort Hood based population is deployed, making it one of the most deployed commands in the Army.

Sattler noted the ceremony was conducted with leaders, colors and guidons only, rather than a command troop formation.

"Our ranks are thin, 22 of our 51 company guidons are not on this field but engaged in fighting the enemy and providing critical sustainment to soldiers who need it on battlefields far away," said Sattler.

"Many of the Soldiers these colors represent are either at war, just returning from war, or will soon deploy again to the battlefield," Sattler said.

Also absent was the SC(E)'s commanding general, Brig. Gen. Michael J. Terry. The general was presiding over a funeral for one of the command's Soldiers, a member of the 62nd Engineer Battalion which is currently deployed to Iraq.

"In many ways, the essence of why we are here today is embodied in the selfless service of our Soldiers and their families who every day stand watch with hard work, determination, and resolve to fight and win our nation's wars and that seek to defend freedom throughout the world," Sattler concluded.

The SC(E) was originally activated as the 13th Support Brigade in September 1965.

By 1975, the command's missions and responsibilities had increased and it was redesignated as the 13th Support Command (Corps). It was redesignated once again in 1989 as the 13th Corps Support Command and finally as 13th SC(E) Feb. 23.

Elements of the command have served in Nicaragua, Haiti, Cuba, Bosnia, Kuwait, Egypt, Iraq and Afghanistan in both combat and humanitarian missions.

Most recently the 13th served as the Joint Logistics Command, Joint Task Force-Katrina, in Louisiana following Hurricane's Katrina and Rita.

 

Soldiers of the 13th SC(E)
Soldiers of the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) stand at attention as the command is redesignated in a ceremony on the 13th SC (E) Guidon Field Feb. 23. Photo by Spc. Adryen Wallace, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Multimedia

Command Sgt Maj Neil Ciotola
III Corps Command Sergeant Major, Command Sgt. Maj. Neil Ciotola, gives 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) guidon bearers a congratulatory pep talk for a job well-done Feb. 23 at the 13th SC (E)'s redesignation ceremony on the 13th SC (E) Guidon Field. Photo by Spc. Adryen Wallace, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Multimedia