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MTMC brings Marine Corps equipment home from Operation Iraqi Freedom

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Alexandria, Va., (USTCNS) --- The Military Traffic Management Command continues to handle Marine equipment returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom through the State Port at Wilmington, N.C.

The USNS Brittin arrived at the port Thursday and the command’s 1192nd Transportation Terminal Brigade, an Army Reserve unit from New Orleans, oversaw the off-loading.

The Brittin, a Military Sealift Command large, medium speed, roll on/roll off vessel, is the second in a series of ships scheduled to bring Marine Corps equipment home, said Jay Stoltz, a Transportation Specialist with MTMC’s 597th Transportation Group headquartered at Southport, N.C.

The Brittin carried about 1500 pieces of equipment belonging to various Marine and Navy units, said Maj. David Wortmann, an Operations Officer with the 1192nd.

Receiving equipment returning from an operation differs only slightly from sending it out, said Wortmann, however, there is a lot more pressure on the supported unit and the transporters in the deployment phase.

“We’re going to get everything off the ship quickly and safely,” said Sgt. John Nicholas of the 1173rd Transportation Terminal Brigade, another reserve unit from Brockton, Mass.

Nicholas and other members of the 1173rd were at the port to support the 1192nd mission.

Discharging the vessel went according to plan, said Stoltz, however there were some challenges.

The main difficulty was the state of the equipment, said Sgt. First Class Anthony Cole of the 1192nd.

“Some of this stuff is broken, which is to be expected considering what it has been through,” he said.

Marine and Navy maintenance troops were on the vessel fixing what they could, said Lance Cpl. Nicholas Tyler of the Marine Corps’ 2nd Transportation Support Battalion.

Equipment too badly damaged or that could not be fixed quickly was towed off the vessel, and arrangements were made to haul it by commercial truck carrier to its home station, said Cole.

Despite the damaged equipment, discharge operations generally move faster than loading operations, said Stoltz.

“What we’re doing is taking someone else’s stow plan and reversing the process,” he said.

After the equipment is removed from the vessel and documented, the units arrange to drive or work with MTMC to ship it by commercial carrier to its home station, said Wortmann.

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