Soldiers with the 409th Contracting Support Brigade, headquartered at Sembach Kaserne, visited Yavoriv, Ukraine, Sept. 15 to 26 to provide contracting support for Rapid Trident 14.
RT14 is a Ukrainian-led, U.S. Army Europe-supported field-training exercise that focused on peacekeeping and stability operations. The 409th team was responsible for contracting services that included transportation, portable latrines, hand-washing stations and material handling equipment.
“These contracting officers provide flexibility in planning, preparation and execution,” said Scott P. Connors, USAREUR training and exercise planner.
Maj. Armando V. Corral, contracting officer with the 928th Contracting Battalion, 409th CSB, said part of the 409th mission was to work with partnering nations and local contractors to ensure continued services for the exercise.
“The significance of our efforts this year for RT14 is even more important given the current situation in Eastern Ukraine,” Corral said. “We were on the ground working with foreign militaries, foreign contractors, and we were still able to provide first-rate contracting support.”
Corral said RT14 supported interoperability among Ukraine, U.S., NATO and Partnership for Peace member nations. Fifteen countries took part in the exercise with the participation of approximately 1,300 personnel.
“Contracting enables these exercises to happen by providing services that reduce the amount of (support) Soldiers on the ground,” said Col. William J. Bailey, 409th CSB commander. “We are here building relationships, and we are building infrastructure.”