NEWS | May 19, 2021

405th AFSB LAR direct conduit between field units, TACOM

By Cameron Porter 405th Army Field Support Brigade

Name: Cliff Pass

Job title: Logistics Assistance Representative, Ground Combat Support

Command: U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command

Assigned: Army Field Support Battalion-Germany, 405th Army Field Support Brigade

Location: Camp Aachen, Grafenwoehr Training Area

Experience: GCS LAR for 6 years plus an additional 6 years at TACOM headquarters

Active duty service: 20 years, 8 months retired Army Sergeant First Class maintenance manager

Hometown: Maysville, Georgia

Q: Can you explain what your duties are as a GCS LAR with the 405th AFSB?

A: I provide onsite evaluation on national maintenance programs. I analyze, coordinate and resolve maintenance, supply and other logistics issues that affect the readiness of Army units. I assist the units in procuring parts. I liaison between the units and the item managers at TACOM headquarters and around the world to help locate these parts. I’m part of a small LAR team that provides support to units stationed at or rotating through Grafenwoehr Traning Area and Hohenfels.

Q: Do GCS LARs specialize in certain Army systems, equipment pieces or vehicles?

A: GCS LARs provide technical assistance for onsite maintenance, training, supply, readiness and safety issues for tanks, armored fighting vehicles, self-propelled howitzers, armored personnel carriers, armored recovery vehicles, armored vehicle launched bridges, multiple launch rocket system carriers and more.

Q: Can you give me an example of how a GCS LAR affects Army modernization efforts?

A: They are updating the manuals for the M270A2 MLRS. Working with the A1 version of MLRS here on a regular basis, I am able to communicate with the technical writers and engineers to help identify shortcomings and assist in building troubleshooting paths. By providing information from the field, they can go back and say ‘oh yeah, we need to add this to the new A2 manual or we need to include a troubleshooting path here or a work package there.’

Q: What motivates you and why do you do it?

A: I wake up every morning thankful that I can teach and train Soldiers. Whether it’s showing them a schematic and teaching them how power flows or showing them how to troubleshoot an item or how to read a technical manual – when they start to understand, that’s what motivates me. That’s my inspiration. And they teach me as well. Once you’ve been in it for a long time, you have to be open to new ideas, new technologies and new ways of doing things. They say ‘yeah, that’s the way it used to be but this is how we’re taught now’ and I look at it and say ‘hey, that is an easier or better way.’ I learn as much from them as they do from me.

Logistics Assistance Representative: LARs are Army civilians serving in motor pools, hangars, maintenance shops, and offices around the world. Highly trained, they bring more than two dozen specialty skills to Army equipment readiness requirements. LARs are the direct conduit between Active, National Guard and Reserve units and TACOM commodity managers and program managers. LARs assist unit maintenance personnel to identify complex equipment faults or failures, and they provide over-the-shoulder training on how to troubleshoot and diagnose these faults or failures. Annually, LARs execute thousands of technical assistance actions while providing real-time feedback and technical guidance to unit commanders and ASC leadership on actions to resolve systemic issues impacting equipment readiness.

Tank-automotive and Armaments Command: TACOM is a major subordinate command of U.S. Army Materiel Command. TACOM manages the Army's ground equipment supply chain, which constitutes about 60 percent of the Army's total equipment. The TACOM workforce includes highly skilled and uniquely qualified professionals, from engineers and industrial artisans to senior logisticians and business analysts. A largely civilian workforce, TACOM is critical to building Army readiness around the world. If a Soldier drives it, shoots it, wears it or eats it – TACOM sustains it.

405th Army Field Support Brigade: The 405th AFSB is assigned to ASC and under the operational control of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command, U.S. Army Europe and Africa. The brigade is headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, and provides materiel enterprise support to U.S. Forces throughout Europe and Africa – providing theater sustainment logistics; synchronizing acquisition, logistics and technology; and leveraging AMC’s materiel enterprise to support joint forces. For more information on the 405th AFSB, visit the official website at www.afsbeurope.army.mil and the official Facebook site at www.facebook.com/405thAFSB.