94th AAMDC advance party deploys to Korea for CPX

| February 21, 2014 | 0 Comments
Deploying warriors of the 94th AAMDC board with duffle bags and other luggage, Feb. 11. The Soldiers left for the Republic of Korea to set the stage for more personnel who will depart later this month for the Key Resolve exercise that takes place Feb. 24-March 6.

Deploying warriors of the 94th AAMDC board with duffle bags and other luggage, Feb. 11. The Soldiers left for the Republic of Korea to set the stage for more personnel who will depart later this month for the Key Resolve exercise that takes place Feb. 24-March 6.

Story and photos by Sgt. 1st Class Karry James
94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command Public Affairs

FORT SHAFTER FLATS — Soldiers kissed their loved ones goodbye and hauled large duffle bags from their cars across a dark, deserted parking lot at 5:30 a.m.

More than a dozen 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command Soldiers then boarded a bus that would carry them to the airport for a long trip through the skies to prepare to participate in a joint and combined exercise with the Republic of Korea, Feb. 11.

The ROK-U.S. Combined Forces Command announced in late January that exercise Key Resolve 2014 will take place Feb. 24-March 6. The exercise is an annual command post exercise that ensures the ROK-U.S. alliance is prepared to defend the ROK, while training alliance forces to respond to any potential event on the peninsula.

Those few Soldiers who have left, known as the ADVON (advanced party), will focus on administrative tasks, such as ensuring that the 94th Soldiers who are participating have adequate bedding and chow and that their systems are ready.

“We, as the ADVON, will set the stage and prep our systems,” said Lt. Col. William Johnson, chief of operations, 94th AAMDC. “We’ll also coordinate with U.S. forces already there, particularly 35th Brigade and our 8th Army points of contact, so that when the other 94th Soldiers arrive, we can immediately begin to operate.”

Williams, who has been to Korea six times for exercises, added, “This will be my last time. It’s been great, and I’m sure this trip won’t be any different.”

In contrast to the seasoned Williams, Pvt. 1st Class Nigel Moore, supply clerk, says this trip is his first time ever going overseas to a foreign country.

“I’m excited about it,” Moore said. “I’m not quite sure what to expect, but I know my leaders will guide me in the right direction, so I’ll be just fine.”

Williams agreed with Moore’s confidence.

“He’ll be squared away, no doubt. He will be fine,” he said.

Sgt. 1st Class Brian Gilmer, 94th AAMDC Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Environmental noncommissioned officer and the forward element topkick for the duration of the exercise, says that he has been the first sergeant for other exercises and thinks things will be challenging, yet rewarding.

“It will be different because of the many fresh faces, but in the end, it always is a great experience,” he said.

Approximately 5,200 U.S. forces personnel will participate in KR 14, of which about 1,100 will come from off peninsula. Forces from major ROK units representing all services will also participate in KR 14. Approximately 10,000 ROK forces are scheduled to participate.

 

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