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March 17, 2016
Combat Logistics Regiment 35 Tours USNS Sacagawea Before Exercise Ssang Yong 16
By Petty Officer 3rd Class Madailein Abbott
GWANGYANG, South Korea – The commanding officer of Combat Logistics Regiment 35 (CLR-35) toured MSC’s dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS Sacagawea (T-AKE 2) here, March 8, prior to his organizations upcoming embark in support of exercise Ssang Yong 2016 (SY16).
“We’re very excited to come aboard the Sacagawea, we feel like this is part of our home.” said Marine Corps Col. Ronald C. Braney, commanding officer, CLR-35, 3rd Marine Logistics Group, out of Okinawa, Japan. “We have a great command and control center onboard, which really brings us a lot of capability if we were ever needed for a crisis response mission. We’re looking forward to working with (crew) in this upcoming exercise.”
Braney said that while this was his first time working together with the Sacagawea, CLR-35 has worked with the Sacagawea crew before in previous offload operations.
CLR- 35 provides integrated intermediate supply and maintenance support to III Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) including isolated components in garrison and when deployed as a MEF or as a part of a Marine Air Ground Task Force in expeditionary conditions.
The tour consisted of visits to areas such as cargo spaces, weather decks, hangar capabilities and other storage spaces of interest to CLR-35 and the equipment they would likely bring with them as part of their routine operations. Navy Capt. Robert Rochford, commodore of Maritime Prepositioning Ships Squadron Three (MPSRON 3), also sat down with Braney and other Marines to discuss the details of the upcoming exercise.
SY16 is the largest multilateral amphibious exercise to date. It is a biennial exercise conducted by integrated Marine Expeditionary Brigade/Navy Expeditionary Strike Group, forward-deployed forces with the Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy and Marine Corps designed to strengthen interoperability and working relationships across a wide range of military operations ranging from disaster relief to complex expeditionary operations.
U.S. Marines will deploy cargo offloaded from the MSC ships to the field for their participation in SY16 exercise, which includes more than 17,000 joint forces. The exercise takes place at various training areas primarily throughout southern and southeastern ROK. In addition to offload activities three additional MSC ships will be conducting seabasing operations as part of SY16.
All units will return to their home base at the conclusion of the exercises.
MSC operates approximately 115 non-combatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.
MPSRON 3, operating in the western Pacific, maintains tactical control of the 12 ships carrying afloat prepositioned U.S. military cargo for the U.S. Marine Corps, the U.S. Army, and the U.S. Air Force. The squadron’s mission is to enable force from the sea by providing swift and effective transportation of vital equipment and supplies for designated operations.