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The 'G' is key to Dynamic Response '02

4 Oct 2002 | Sgt. Zachary A. Bathon 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit

When a Marine in the field here in Kosovo sits down to eat chow or puts on a pair of clean socks, he may not think about all the work that went in to getting him those things or even how he arrived in the field to begin with. But one thing is for certain.

If it were not for the Marines of Marine Expeditionary Unit Service Support Group 24 (MSSG-24) his time in the field would be very uncomfortable.

Along with making re-supply runs that bring food, water and clean laundry out to the MEU's Marines, MSSG-24 plays a key role in everything that is going on during Operation Dynamic Response '02.

It started with MSSG-24 facilitating the offload of the three ships of the USS Nassau Amphibious Ready Group. This included the railhead operations that were used to move the MEU's vehicles from the port in Thessolaniki, Greece to Camp Able Sentry in the Former Yugoslavian Republic of Macedonia.

Once all the troops were in place, in their Areas of Operation in Southern Kosovo, MSSG-24 began re-supply convoys to bring out supplies to the Marines of Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Bn., 2nd Marines. They also set up their maintenance shops to counter any problems that may arise with the MEU's large number of tactical vehicles.

"Along with doing our everyday supply runs, our maintenance guys have been busy making third echelon repairs to some of the vehicles" said Capt. Denise M. Garcia, operations officer, MSSG-24. "But along with the maintenance and re-supply runs we have also done a lot of different training here in Kosovo."

A few of the MSSG's training highlights include some helicopter support cross-training with the Army, a line of communications reconnaissance from Prizren to Dragas, Kosovo and a rifle and pistol shooting competition with Soldiers from the Swiss Army.

Marine Expeditionary Unit Service Support Group 24 is also conducting Medical and Dental Civil Affairs Projects for local residents in their areas of operations and patrolling in and around Camp Casablanca.

"So far everything here has been great," said Garcia. "We have been operating 24/7 and have had no injuries and things are running smoothly."

One key to the success of the MSSG has been their cooperation while working with the Swiss, Germans and Austrians.

"We have managed to make good friends with our hosts and they have done a lot for us," said Garcia.

The Marines in the "G", as it is often referred to, also seem happy to be in Kosovo. "Being here is cool," said Cpl. John L. Kennedy, truck driver and Conway, S.C. native. "It is a lot different than what I am used to seeing back home, but we are staying busy here and having fun."