TENGAN PIER, Okinawa, Japan -- The Marines with Ammunition Company, 3d Supply Battalion, Combat Logistics Regiment 35, 3d Marine Logistics Group, III Marine Expeditionary Force loaded up approximately 130 pallets of ammunition at the ASP to be transported and returned to the Naval Munitions Command on Sasebo Navy Base, Japan, for proper disposal.
“The mission ensures that III MEF only carries serviceable, mission ready ammunition for training and real world operations,” said Capt. Steven Kasdan, the commanding officer of Ammo Co., 3d Supply Bn.
The Marines have spent an approximate total of 2,000 hours processing, packaging, and moving approximately 15,000 lbs of total net explosive weight, allowing them to exercise their capabilities to send out large amounts of ammunition.
“The [unserviceable] ammunition just takes up space,” said Cpl. Samantha Copenhaver, an ammunition technician with Ammo Co. “We can now use that space for serviceable ammo for training purposes.”
Ammunition is labeled unserviceable for a number of reasons. The ammunition may have expired past its’ shelf life or was utilized on range and had a defect that deemed it unserviceable.
To remain cost effective and for the safety of the island, the ammunition is shipped to mainland Japan and other parts of the United States to be either burned, detonated, demilitarized or recycled safely.
The experience of a ship-to-shore ammo movement is unique to the Marines with III MEF and benefits their forward deployed capabilities by simulating a realistic scenario that could happen during an operation.
This allows us to provide the warfighter serviceable ammunition to provide security for our two nations, said Master Sgt. Victor Garcia, the operations chief of Henoko Ammunitions Supply Point.
“[It also] allows our Marines to hone in on their skills in their MOS with ship-to-shore movements and port operations,” Garcia said. “Not everybody back stateside has this opportunity.”