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Georgian support unit passes torch to Texans

Apr 26, 2010

By Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Cooley, 15th Sustainment Brigade Public Affairs

CAMP LIBERTY, Iraq -- The outgoing 260th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 15th Sustainment Brigade, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), out of Hunter Army Airfield, Ga., transferred authority to their replacement, the 373rd CSSB, 15th Sust. Bde., out of Beaumont, Texas, in a ceremony in front of the battalion headquarters here April 22.

The transfer signifies the end of the 260th's tour in Iraq and the beginning of the 373rd's by showing the casing of the outgoing unit's colors and the uncasing of the incoming's.

Col. Larry Phelps, a Greenville, Ala., native and commander of the 15th Sust. Bde., was pleased with 260th's mission performance.

"Sitting here, in the heart of Baghdad, in the center of the storm, you have made the difficult routine and the impossible frequent," Phelps told the 260th command team.

During their deployment the 260th "Fuelmasters" delivered 24 million gallons of fuel, 2,300 pallets of ammunition, more than 10 million repair parts, completed more than 16,500 maintenance work orders, completed 2,000 convoys, drove 2 million miles, processed 1,600 containers, recovered nearly $60 million worth of Army property, issued more than 2.7 million rounds of ammunition, and more, Phelps said.

"More important than any of these great accomplishments is the attitude 260th has brought to this mission," Phelps said.

Lt. Col. Joe Dixon, a Frankfort, Ind., native and commander of the 260th praised his Soldiers for a job well done and expressed his confidence in the 373rd.

"Lt. Col. Giulia Giacoppe and team - we couldn't have picked a better battalion to [relief in place] with," Dixon said of the 373rd's commander and Sugarland, Texas native.

Phelps agreed.

"Giulia, your transition with Joe has been exceptional, and we have already grown to trust your team," he said. "You are entering a time of even greater change. You will get through it, as a team and as a family, and write your own chapter in the history of this operation."

Giacoppe recognized that her unit would face different challenges from those that came before and paraphrased former President John F. Kennedy when he explained his goal of putting a man on the moon.

"We do these things not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skill; because the challenge is one we are willing to accept, and one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win," she said.

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