Total team effort – a common phrase in the Army and one the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s Africa Battalion helped flawlessly demonstrate recently at Leghorn Army Depot in Livorno.

Working as a team with their counterparts at Italian Joint Operations Command, the U.S. Air Force’s 731st Munitions Squadron, U.S. Army Garrison Italy Camp Darby and ammunition experts from the Pisa Ammunition Storage Area, Army Field Support Battalion-Africa supported the preparation, loading and movement of 40 ammunition containers onto 20 railcars in late November and early December.

The ammunition mission – slated to support current operations in Europe – demonstrates a strong professional collaboration between the Italian army, the U.S. Air Force in Pisa and AFSBn-Africa, according to an information paper released by the battalion. The mission also highlights the total team effort and installation support from Camp Darby as well as the Logistics Assistance Representative ammunition experts, also known as Quality Assurance Specialists (Ammunition Surveillance) or QASAS, from the Pisa Ammunition Storage Area.

The Italian base commander and USAG Italy at Camp Darby orchestrated the event, but mission success was dependent on the critical support provided by AFSBn-Africa, the 731st Munitions Squadron, Theater Logistics Support Center-Europe and the U.S. Army Joint Munitions Command QASAS personnel, the information paper stated. The mission was also instrumental is helping everyone involved in refining their ammunition handling and movement tactics, techniques and procedures in preparation for another unilateral ammunition movement mission in the future.

Tom Kilian is the director of supply at AFSBn-Africa. The AFSBn-Africa locomotive team falls under his umbrella of responsibility. He said AFSB-Africa was asked by the Italian army to assist with the rail mission and to help receive, load and push out 40 containers of ammunition from Leghorn.

“It was fantastic working with our partner agencies from the Air Force, Italian Army, garrison, TLSC-E and the Pisa Ammunition Storage Area,” Kilian said.

“Without having this consolidated team effort, none of this could have been accomplished in the timeframe we accomplished it in,” said Kilian. “In conjunction with our team, the 731st MUNS (Munitions Squadron) lent its expertise to the mission, which was critical to mission success.”

“I’d also like to stress our locomotive team at AFSBn-Africa,” said Kilian. “If we didn’t have them in place, none of this could have been accomplished because they had to be out there every single time we received the containers and loaded the locomotives.”

Regarding munitions safety, Kilian said the QASAS personnel from the Pisa Ammunition Storage Area were key. They were there to provide oversight and expertise during the handling and movement of the ammunition.

Battalion Africa is one of four battalions assigned to the 405th AFSB. The battalion is charged with receiving, maintaining, storing and issuing Army Prepositioned Stocks-2. It is also responsible for linking national logistics capabilities and providing logistics solutions to Army units and joint forces South of the Alps, to include U.S. Army Europe and Africa, the 173rd Airborne Brigade and other strategic partners in order to support two geographic combatant commands and enable readiness.

The 405th AFSB is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa. The brigade is headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and provides materiel enterprise support to U.S. Forces throughout Europe and Africa – providing theater sustainment logistics; synchronizing acquisition, logistics and technology; and leveraging the U.S. Army Materiel Command materiel enterprise to support joint forces.


This piece is written by Cameron Porter from the 405th Army Field Support Brigade – Europe & Africa. Want to feature your story? Reach out to us at [email protected]