872nd Maintenance Company Keeps the Army Running in Diamondback, Iraq

By Comeaux, Monika | Army Reserve Magazine, Spring 2006 | Go to article overview
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872nd Maintenance Company Keeps the Army Running in Diamondback, Iraq


Comeaux, Monika, Army Reserve Magazine


LOGISTICAL SUPPORT AREA DIAMONDBACK, Iraq - Keeping with its name, Diamondback, the logistical support area has a lot of Soldiers with the double diamond patch on their shoulders.

As soon as units hit the gate, chances are a Soldier from the 96th Regional Readiness Command (RRC) with the diamond patch will ask for identification. Troops manning the entry to the dining facility often wear the diamonds and even some of the supervisors inside are sporting the patch.

When units need direct support maintenance on a vehicle, generator, weapon, radio or night vision goggles, they meet the Soldiers with the diamond patch again. The Soldiers wearing the double diamond are members of the 872nd Maintenance Company, an Army Reserve unit from the 96th RRC, based out of Ogden, Utah.

"I am very proud of the fact that anything that goes on at this base, the 872nd Maint. Co. is involved in it," said the unit's first sergeant, ISG Darren H. Kirschman.

The unit officially found out that they were deploying at the end of January 2005 but they arrived in theater on Aug. 16, 2005, Kirschman said. They spent the time in between gearing up and getting their personnel to 100 percent strength by crossleveling nearly half of their Soldiers from other units.

"Some of the NCOs that were cross-leveled into the unit just did outstanding things. The unit just really meshed very quickly together," Kirschman said.

They also spent almost 90 days in the remote training areas of Fort Bliss, Texas, so far out that even their cell phones did not work. Members of the unit performed physically demanding tasks in the dry heat wearing body armor and ballistic helmets, ducking blank fire, cacti and rattle snakes. The training was designed to mimic the conditions in Iraq, allowing Soldiers to acclimate.

The theater commander in Iraq actually mandated the training, which included tactical movements, combat logistics patrol operations and entry control point operations, among many other things. "Not much technical, all tactical... it was 90 days of pretty grueling training," Kirschman said.

"During the right seat ride in Iraq, the Hawaii unit that the 872nd Maint. Co. replaced did great in explaining to them the different types of missions they were going to be involved with," said MAJ Harold C. Clements, company commander. "They had a training schedule, they did the left seat, the right seat, and it went awesome," he said.

Approximately half of the company works on securing an entry control point and running combat logistics patrols. They also provide two recovery teams, which are standing by, ready to roll out in 20 minutes to recover vehicles that break down off post, said ILT Michael D.

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