JDC keeps drawdown rolling

Story and photos by Sgt. Kimberly Johnson
196th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment
13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) Public Affairs

CONTINGENCY OPERATING BASE ADDER, Iraq — The Soldiers working at the joint distribution center here play a key role in the responsible drawdown of troops and equipment moving south though Iraq.

During the drawdown, equipment is moved to Kuwait, and then either sent back to the United States or reallocated to units in Afghanistan.

“The big picture is to get all the unused equipment back so it can be reset and (sent to) Afghanistan,” said Sgt. 1st Class Dawadrain Clark, noncommissioned officer-in-charge of the JDC with the 40th Quartermaster Company, 110th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 224th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) and an Ocala, Fla., native. “Our mission here, at the JDC in (COB) Adder is to be prepared for that drawdown.”

The Soldiers at the JDC handle any equipment that rolls, either on wheels or tracks. They have handled large items like tanks, and equipment as small as a forklift.

“The rolling stock we get comes from all over theater. We get a wide range of combat vehicles and civilian vehicles to (M1) Abrams tanks, Bradleys and engineer equipment,” Clark said.

A convoy carrying equipment destined for the JDC can contain items from many different units or it can be all one convoy from a single unit, said 1st Lt. Christopher Kee, officer-in-charge of the JDC with the 40th Quartermaster Co. and an Urbana, Ill., native.

Many of the Soldiers in the JDC yard are working outside of their military occupation specialty, Clark said.

“This mission is teaching my Soldiers to be flexible in their MOSs,” he said. “We have a lot of different MOSs in the crew here. They get an opportunity to work outside their MOS and see how logistics work for the whole military. The Soldiers are dedicated to the mission.”

“Their attention to detail is a must because of the dangers in what we do,” Clark said. “There is a lot of loading and downloading heavy equipment. They take pride in what they do.”

Kee said he agreed with Clark’s statements, noting that noncommissioned officers have a responsibility to hold to the Army standards.

“I have a good group of Soldiers but I think it starts with the NCOs,” he said. “The NCOIC … sets the standard and he does not deviate from that standard.  That’s very encouraging for me.”

The 40th Quartermaster Co. works with civilian counterparts from KBR, Inc. who handle all of the containers moving through theater. Among the American civilians working for KBR, Inc., there are many Iraqis and third country nationals working together to support the drawdown mission in the JDC.

“It has been interesting partnering with the Iraqis,” Kee said. “We have taught them about logistics, at their level of classification of course, and recently we have taken on several new Iraqi contractors.  They have been really good to work with. They do everything we ask them to do; they are very punctual and they are hard workers. That’s what we need out here.  They understand what needs to be done and they are constantly in the (JDC) yard, regardless of the heat.”

As American forces prepare to hand over a stable country back to the Iraqis, everyone has to work together to accomplish the handover mission, Kee said.

“It’s a partnership of different countries coming together on the civilian side,” he said. “I see (it) every day and they work together to get the mission done.”

 

news photo
Sgt. Joseph Franklin, a petroleum supply specialist with the 40th Quartermaster Company, 110th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 224th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) and a New Orleans native, guides a KBR Inc. semitrailer driver, delivering retrograded humvees, June 23 at the joint distribution center at Contingency Operating Base Adder, Iraq. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kimberly Johnson)

news photo
Sgt. Joseph Franklin, a petroleum supply specialist with the 40th Quartermaster Company, 110th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 224th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) and a New Orleans native, guides to a forklift operator hoisting a military ambulance off a semitrailer, upon its delivery to the joint distribution center June 23 at Contingency Operating Base Adder, Iraq. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kimberly Johnson)

news photo
Sgt. Joseph Franklin, a petroleum supply specialist with the 40th Quartermaster Company, 110th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 224th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) and a New Orleans native, guides to a forklift operator hoisting a broken down vehicle into the air June 23 at the joint distribution center at Contingency Operating Base Adder, Iraq. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Kimberly Johnson)