KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany –
The Soldier arrived five minutes early for his appointment. Dragging three duffle bags of Army gear – noticeably excited to complete his Central Issue Facility turn-in appointment – he enthusiastically entered CIF. A few minutes later, he walked back out of the facility – nothing but his stamped clearing papers and finalized CIF clothing record in hand – fully cleared and one step closer to completing his service with the Army.
Hassan Hearne knows how important CIF is to Soldiers like this. The Kleber Kaserne CIF manager has been working in Army supply and at CIFs for 15 years – nearly half of that time at the Kleber facility assigned to the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s Logistics Readiness Center Rheinland-Pfalz.
Supporting about 5,000 Soldiers plus deployable emergency essential Army civilians and contractors, the supervisory supply specialist and property book officer said Kleber CIF is responsible for more than 90 Army organizations and units across the Kaiserslautern Military Community. They include units stationed at Miesau Army Depot, Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, and Panzer, Daenner, Kleber and Sembach Kasernes – plus Rhine Ordnance Barracks and some Army units at Ramstein Air Base.
“We issue and receive Organizational Clothing and Individual Equipment, plus we conduct mass Rapid Fielding Initiative equipment issues for units that are deploying, and we support other customer service requests as needed, every day,” said the 28-year Army civilian logistics and supply expert.
Ballistic vests, helmets, armored plates, wet weather and cold weather gear, duffle bags, sleeping mats, sleep systems, gloves, cold weather boots – those are just some of the standard OCIE equipment items maintained at the Kleber facility, according to Hearne.
“In addition to the standard OCIE we issue to all Soldiers, we also have job specific equipment and clothing such as cook uniforms (for Army culinary specialists) and coveralls and steel-toed boots for mechanics and fuelers,” said the recent business administration graduate from the University of Maryland Global Campus.
“The cold weather gear we have on-hand right now is extremely important considering the temperatures we experience here in Germany during the winter months,” he said. “And we have Soldiers being deployed to Eastern Europe to places like Romania and Poland, too, which is even colder.”
“We just had a request from a unit taking part in an exercise in Norway. They came through on Friday for a winter white issue, which is mostly covers and parkas and things with a white pattern so they can blend in with the snow better,” said the native of Bay Pines, California.
“I’m an Army veteran myself so I understand what Soldiers have to go through. I know how important it is to have all this equipment, and I know how important it is to the Army,” said Hearne, who served four years in the active Army as a heavy transport operator and Soldier.
“When they go to the weapons range they need to have ballistic vests and helmets. When they go to training, they need to have cold weather gear,” said Hearne, who worked in postal, personnel and food service as an Army civilian before taking his first job at a CIF.
But Hearne doesn’t do it all by himself. The 47-year-old father of four said he’s extremely grateful and proud of his team of Army civilians and local national employees supporting the U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz area of operations.
“It’s nice to have employees you can depend on who are competent. They are my first line subject matter experts, and we work great together as a team,” said Hearne, who also worked at a CIF supporting the Mannheim and Heidelberg communities before it closed.
On top of the CIF facility at Kleber Kaserne, Hearne is also responsible for a CIF Annex at Sembach, which supports deploying Navy personnel. In addition to conducting issue and turn-in operations at both facilities, Hearne said his team also conducts unit reconciliations where units provide their manning rosters and Hearne and his team match them with what they have in their systems for accountability purposes.
LRC Rheinland-Pfalz is one of seven LRCs under the command and control of the 405th AFSB. LRCs execute installation logistics support and services to include supply, maintenance, transportation and food service management as well as clothing issue facility operations, hazardous material management, personal property and household goods, passenger travel, property book operations, and non-tactical vehicle and garrison equipment management. When it comes to providing day-to-day installation services, LRC Rheinland-Pfalz directs, manages and coordinates a variety of operations and activities in support of USAG Rheinland-Pfalz
LRC Rheinland-Pfalz reports to the 405th AFSB, which is assigned to U.S. Army Sustainment Command 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 U.S. Army Materiel Command’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.