MARINE CORPS LOGISTICS BASE ALBANY, Ga -- While the deployment rate for Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany is relatively low, there are Marines here that are deployed almost six months out of every year. These Marines sacrifice a great deal of time at home and with their families to ensure Marines have what is needed to win battles.
The Marine Corps Technical Assistance Team here is equipped and trained to provide onsite technical assistance to Marine Forces on Marine Corps ground equipment. Simply stated, these Marines support Marine Corps readiness.
The team is broken into two platoons. One is located here. The MCLB Albany team handles every request from the East Coast to the Mississippi River. The other team is stationed at MCLB Barstow, Calif. It assists the Marine forces on the West Coast.
Many of the Marines here have taken part in Operation Iraqi Freedom and OIF II. Some Marines were even deployed to Kuwait for a month.
One of the most important trips MCTAT made was helping with the reconstitution efforts at Camp Lejeune, N.C., for Marine Forces Reserve when their gear was returning from Iraq last year.
"Technical Assistance Marines filled billets to relieve the operational tempo of Marines from Marine Forces Reserve," said Master Sgt. Joel Schultz, staff noncommissioned officer-in-charge. "They filled in as maintenance chiefs, shop supervisors and provided consistency in quality assurance."
MCTAT has currently been on 36 deployments so far this year.
The team here is comprised of four major components; ordnance, motor transport, communications/electronics, and engineering.
"This section is not made up of just one military occupational specialty," said Gunnery Sgt. Chris McMasters, operations chief. "We are made up of duty experts in many different job areas. These Marines have been around the Marine Corps for some time and have the knowledge and experience to handle any problem."
The reason MCTAT is made up of so many different specialties is because incoming work requests may require a specialist from an armorer to an optics technician. The requests that are submitted by units also determine how each team is organized.
"We only send Marines that have expertise in the fields that the unit needs help with," said Chief Warrant Officer-3 Craig Corderman, officer-in-charge. "That is why we have so many different Marines with different job specialties."
Not only does MCTAT make repairs, the team here also conduct assist and training visits for all Marine Corps units east of the Mississippi River.
"The most important part of our job is to provide quality assistance," said Gunnery Sgt. Darryll Reynolds, motor transport team leader.
"When we leave the unit, we want them to know that we did our job and assisted them the best way we could," Reynolds exclaimed.
While these jobs are undoubtedly essential in supporting the Corps' operating forces, the constant deployments often present a challenge to the team members and their families.
"It certainly affects a family when you are gone so often," Reynolds said. "But that is our job, and our main goal is to help Marines."