‘Wolf Pack’ jumps at chance to serve during Operation Pacific Angel

| September 22, 2011 | 0 Comments
Pfc. Angel Puebla, carpentry and masonry specialist, 643rd Eng. Co., 84th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC, paints the side of a clinic, during Operation Pacific Angel in Cambodia, recently. (Staff Sgt. Christopher Boitz | U.S. Air Force)

Pfc. Angel Puebla, carpentry and masonry specialist, 643rd Eng. Co., 84th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC, paints the side of a clinic, during Operation Pacific Angel in Cambodia, recently. (Staff Sgt. Christopher Boitz | U.S. Air Force)

2nd Lt. William D. Thomson
643rd Engineer Company, 84th Eng. Battalion, 130th Eng. Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command

 SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Unlike most of the vertical construction units within the Army today, the 643rd Engineer Company has a unique opportunity to conduct missions in many countries outside the Middle East.

Although the company hasn’t deployed as one unit since 2009, platoons, squads and individual teams of Soldiers are constantly on the move throughout the Pacific, to meet the ongoing demand for high-quality construction, whenever and wherever their skills are needed.

Recently, the 643rd Eng. Co., 84th Eng. Battalion, 130th Eng. Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, added another country to the list of places where “Wolf Pack” Soldiers have operated in 2011.

Spc. Abel Almager and Pfc. Angel Puebla, both carpentry and masonry specialists, 1st Platoon, 643rd Eng. Co., successfully completed a two-week mission to Kohn Kong City, Cambodia, while attached to the 13th Air Force Civil Engineering Element for Operation Pacific Angel.

The goal of their assignment was to aid in improving U.S. military and host nation joint/combined interoperability while demonstrating U.S. support for regional security and humanitarian assistance.

Almager and Puebla worked alongside U.S. and Cambodian Air Force personnel to finish building a hospital, as well as to put a roof on a bathroom inside a local school. During both projects, they were able to share their technical skills while embracing the opportunity to see how another U.S. service branch and a different country executed construction tasks.

In addition to the chance to serve the local people of the area and interact with other friendly forces, the Soldiers said they appreciated the chance to be immersed in another culture.

Having both deployed in support of Ayara Guardian 2011 in Thailand, a few months prior, the pair said they had fun comparing two places most Americans will rarely have an opportunity to travel to. In Thailand, they were mostly surrounded by buildings in a city, but the area around the job site in Cambodia was much more rural and secluded, they explained.

Almager and Puebla learned about Cambodian culture, interacted with people from the host country and sampled traditional cuisine.

“I looked forward to lunch every day at the construction site, because it was always local food that I really enjoyed trying,” Puebla said. “That was also the best time to talk with the local people and get a better understanding of their daily activities, cultural differences, traditional customs and courtesies.”

“The most rewarding part of the exercise was the feeling that the Pacific Angel team had positively affected the lives of the Cambodian population who would use the buildings to improve their way of life,” Almager said. “It was obvious that the locals living in the area appreciated our work. They not only expressed their gratitude verbally, but many offered to help build during the last few days of construction, as well. It made me proud to serve in our Army.”

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Category: Deployed Forces, Exercises, News

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