U.S. Forces Turn in Equipment in Support of Drawdown

Vehicles from 1st Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, stage for the Mobile-Redistribution Property Assistance Team Yard Oct. 16.

It is said the key to winning a war is decisively engaging and defeating the enemy on the battlefield. However, a less heralded, but incredibly vital aspect of warfare, happens at places like the Mobile‑Redistribution Property Assistance Team Yard.

From Oct. 15 to 31, the Task Force 1st Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, executed M‑RPAT operations. TF Dragons attempted to turn in over 133 combat‑tested vehicles at the M‑RPAT.

Some may wonder, “What is a Mobile‑RPAT Yard?” The answer is best described by the Dragon Maintenance officer in charge of the M‑RPAT operations, Capt. Robert Kelly. “The Mobile‑RPAT Yard is an area on the base where units take their equipment that they are ready to have inspected and cleared for turn‑in so that U.S. forces can leave Iraq upon the accomplishment of their mission,” explains Kelly.

“The first week of M‑RPAT is dedicated to consolidating vehicles and equipment to either be sent to another theater of operations, to be used for theater reserve or to be sent back to the United States,” Kelly continued. “The second week is focused on vehicles that must undergo the Army reset program.”

“In accordance with the deadline of Dec. 31, as stated in the Security Agreement, U.S. forces are drawing down and will leave Iraq.” Maj. J.D. Williams, the battalion executive officer echoed. “Here, at COS Echo, we have years of rolling stock and non‑rolling stock items that have been the difference maker in achieving mission success for the opportunity to rapidly get these key platforms and technologies to soldiers still in the fight in Afghanistan or back to the United States for upgrades and refit.”

An M109A6 Paladin from the 1st Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division gets a wash before staging for the Mobile-Redistribution Property Assistance Team Yard.

The M‑RPAT operation utilizes the efforts of an average of 25 soldiers and civilians a day, all working together to prepare over 200 vehicles and 1,400 other pieces of equipment for turn‑in.

“The soldiers and civilians have done an outstanding job staging the vehicles in an organized manner,” Kelly said praising the hard work put into this operation. “We really appreciate the help we have received from KBR and other units on the COS.”

Turning equipment into M‑RPAT requires a lot of elbow grease from soldiers to prepare the equipment for turn‑in.

“We definitely had a few vehicles that got turned away after the initial inspection, however, my soldiers worked hard to get all vehicles and equipment to standard so that we could achieve success here,” 1st Lt. Andrew Gaffield, the Headquarters and Headquarters Battery executive officer, said about the difficulty of the turn‑in process.

The M‑RPAT helps the Army by accounting for the millions of dollars worth of equipment poured into the Iraqi theater and gaining efficiencies in the Army’s reset process that units go through upon redeployment.

“Identifying equipment to send to reset gives the Army a head start on refitting that equipment so that soldiers can train in garrison with fully operational and updated equipment,” said Sgt. 1st Class Jackson, the Dragon Supply non‑commissioned officer in charge.

With the continued efforts from Dragon soldiers, M‑RPAT operations successfully helped the Army come one step closer to achieving their mission in support of the Security Agreement.

Written by 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.

Submitted to ArmyLive and published at www.jaywaitkus.blog.com.