OBSERVATION: Some rear detachment commanders were selected because of their availability.
DISCUSSION: The rear detachment commander is responsible for all soldiers, unit and installation support missions, training of replacements, property accountability, and care of deployed soldiers' families. This requires a capable and talented officer.
LESSON(S): Select rear detachment commanders based on their ability, rank, and experience.
Identify the rear detachment commander before or early in the deployment sequence.
Provide work space and time for rear detachment commanders to coordinate with the Family Assistance Center, the chain of concern, and higher rear detachment headquarters.
Select a rear detachment commander who can serve through the duration of the operation or ensure a transition period.
OBSERVATION: Lack of information to rear detachment commanders resulted in poor personnel accountability, use of soldiers, and care of unit property.
DISCUSSION: Some rear detachment organizations consolidated soldiers from subordinate units, creating a new unit organized with soldiers unfamiliar to the rear detachment commander. Lack of information on soldier capabilities (physical profiles and experience) hindered rear detachment commanders' decisions on how to best employ them. Insufficient guidance on the disposition of organizational equipment and personal property caused problems for rear detachment commanders.
LESSON(S): The losing unit must provide information files on nondeploying soldiers, explaining the reason they are nondeployable, their duty position, and their separation date from the rear detachment.
The losing unit must brief the rear detachment commander on what he is to do with remaining equipment. Consider that equipment may have to be moved from storage or sent forward to the unit.
OBSERVATION: Units stored soldiers' personal property in billet rooms, company orderly rooms, motor pools, and other locations resulting in a variety of problems for the rear detachment.
DISCUSSION: The rear detachment is required to secure and guard each location. Property moved to provide space for mobilizing units caused problems. Soldiers living off post were not provided storage space. Storing property in centralized locations provided better security and control. This method decreased the number of guards required, allowed easier access and control of property if it required movement, and provided space to store property of soldiers living off post.
LESSON(S): Develop a plan to store, account for, secure and move personal property of soldiers living on and off post.
Centralize storage at battalion level. Use a single facility large enough to store all personal property.
Designate one person to control the storage facility.
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