82nd CAB Helicopters Return From Afghanistan
Paratroopers from the 82nd CAB received their helicopters used in Afghanistan at the Charleston port in South Carolina from a charter vessel and flown them to home base Fort Bragg, North Carolina
US Army, June 01, 2015 - CHARLESTON, SC by Staff Sgt Christopher Freeman – The redeployment ceremonies are over and the Paratroopers of the 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade are home. They are now joined by the same aircraft they flew in Afghanistan on their recent combat deployment.
Paratroopers from the 82nd CAB received their helicopters during port operations from a DoD charter vessel, Charleston, May 13.
These helicopters were flown back to Fort Bragg, North Carolina following the unpacking and final inspection by the crews.
“Here in Charleston, we received the aircraft from the Green Lake vessel that came from Rota, Spain,” said 1st Lt. Kyle, Gaskill, transportation officer, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade. “We received multiple types of aircrafts from AH 64 Apaches to two variations of the UH 60 Black Hawk.”
Once the aircraft arrive in Charleston, the pace picks up to get these helicopters back to their home station.
“The 122nd Aviation Support Battalion, 82nd CAB, has been tasked with the rebuild of the aircraft,” said Chief Warrant Officer 3 Travis Michael, aviation maintenance officer, 122nd Aviation Support Battalion, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade. “We have four teams dedicated to the rebuild of the aircraft.”
Rebuilding the aircraft gives the Paratroopers a chance to hone their skills in their respective job.
“This is when the [Paratroopers] get to do nothing but their job,” said Michael. “For 12 hours a day, they get to do their job. No guard duty or [charge of quarters], just them working on aircraft.”
Long before the mechanics turn their wrenches, these aircraft must travel over 10,000 miles on a journey spanning three continents and four months.
"There is a lot of planning that goes into getting these helicopters home,” said Staff Sgt. Adam Madson, mobility noncommissioned officer, 82nd CAB.
“We have to coordinate through multiple agencies to get them from Afghanistan to Spain and them back to Fort Bragg.”
The motto of the Transportation Corps showcases the importance of planning for all of the pieces required.
“Nothing happens until something moves,” said Madson.
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82nd CAB 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade US Army Aviation
Port of Charleston