Pacific Army Reserve supports ‘Ocean Sun’ in Am. Samoa
PAGO PAGO, American Samoa — A dozen Pacific Army Reserve Soldiers deployed to conduct “Ocean Sun” Emergency Disaster Response Exercise at the Konelio Pele U.S. Army Reserve Center, here, Aug. 14-18.
“Training events like this enhance the mission capability and capacity of the 9th Mission Support Command to more efficiently deploy and respond to disasters in the Pacific,” said Lt. Col. Jamie Jones, the Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) coordinator with the 9th MSC.
The Soldiers, assigned to the 9th MSC, formed the forward element of Task Force-East – the first two of four Rapid Deployment Packages (RDPs) the 9th MSC can deploy in support of a request from civilian authorities, depending on response requirements.
These forward-deployed teams assisted in safeguarding military and civilian personnel and mitigating human suffering during the DSCA scenario of Category 4 Tropical Cyclone Velma, which notionally devastated the island of Tutuila, Aug. 10.
As part of Task Force-East, the 9th MSC Soldiers were assigned to one of two functional teams: the Forward Command Element (FCE) and the Early Entry Command Post (EECP). Their three main objectives were to respond, operate and stabilize.
The FCE team supported and coordinated with state, Federal and DOD forces and assisted in developing an initial incident assessment for the commander of U.S. Pacific Command.