CAMP CASEY, South Korea – As part of a bilateral agreement between the U.S. and South Korea, the Soldiers of the 101st Brigade Support Battalion moved their personnel and equipment from Camp Casey in Area 1 to Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek, South Korea.
The multi-day move, which started on April 3 and ended April 13, has seen the battalion relocate its tracked vehicle systems via railcar while the rest of their wheeled vehicle fleet moved by way of convoy from Casey to Humphreys.
“It changes our operational environment,” said Command Sgt. Maj. David Williams, the battalion’s senior enlisted leader. “It also gives us a chance to see how we would operate. It gave us the opportunity to look at our battalion and look at how we would support our brigade in a real-world situation.”
“By moving, it gave us the opportunity to look at the whole gambit of operations, from convoy movement to packing and loading,” he added.
The bilateral agreement, which was signed in October 2014, aims to consolidate the majority of U.S. Forces Korea south of Seoul in order to enhance readiness, deterrence and defense posture on the peninsula.
Planning for the move was a joint effort between the battalion, the brigade and the 2nd Infantry Division / ROK-US Combined Division’s 194th Combat Sustainment Support Bn., 2nd Sustainment Bde.
Working with the CSSB “was outstanding; expecially when it came to night operations,” Williams said. “We look at it as a training event – an operational event, and it gave us the opportunity to see how we work together in a real-world situation.”
Moving an entire battalion took considerable planning and coordination between all the agencies. The move itself wasn’t without challenges. However, the battalion and its partners were able to overcome those challenges with minimal impact.
One of our biggest challenges was moving the (operational supply support activity),” Williams said. “We had practiced moving the SSA by doing an exercise about a month and a half ago where we packed up the entire SSA and moved it to Camp Mobile.”
The 101st BSB is a part of the 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division and is currently on a nine-month rotation to the peninsula in order to support the 2ID/RUCD in its commitment to security and deterrence of North Korean aggression. The “Guardian” battalion is the second of the 1st ABCT units to make the move to Humphreys with the rest of the brigade following suit in the coming months.
“We are 100 percent on the ground at Humphreys,” Williams said. “We’re operational and we’re back to business as normal. During the whole move, we didn’t shut down. We still provided support throughout the whole brigade and throughout Korea.”
USFK units first began moving in July 2016 and the moves will continue until all affected organizations have relocated to one of the two areas. The Combined Forces Command will keep the 210th Field Artillery Brigade in Area 1 until the alliance partners are able to field a comparable capability to carry out the counter fire task force mission.