Services come together for common mission

I am CW2 Paul Mercier, 220th Transportation Co. in Keene, New Hampshire.
 
I individually deployed to Kabul, Afghanistan as a National Maintenance Advisor.
 
I spent 1 week at CRC Fort Benning, GA . for training.  I eventually arrived at Camp Phoenix, Regional Support Command-Capital, Kabul, Afghanistan. I become part of the Central Workshop (CWS) Combat Advisor team.
 
I, along with a mixture of service members to include Army and Navy personnel are the link between US Coalition Forces and the Afghan National Army on Logistical, Vehicle maintenance and Weapons processes.
 
I have been mobilized to Division, Brigade and Battalion units but had to ask myself, “Will I be an asset to the team and the mission?” As of now, I will have to say yes.
 
In addition to advising, we run our own convoys to and from the Central Workshop. This is the longest 7 miles of city driving I have ever been subjected to. We spend a lot of time on the roads of Kabul, Afghanistan. Navigating the roads is like driving in Boston at 1730.  There are no traffic lights, no posted speed limits, and no right of ways. There are no real traffic laws. Being from New Hampshire, this is something that I wasn’t used to.  My very first time driving lead vehicle was interesting.  It was very unnerving. I got out to the vehicle early to PMCS and fill out all the paperwork.  The 7 mile convoy through the city streets of Kabul went off with relative ease except it took over 40 minutes.  My team got where they needed to be without incident in the fast paced, high priority ride, being in a combat zone.
 
With one hundred plus successful convoy missions under our belts, with no injuries or casualties, we have come to depend on each other a lot.
 
Being a part of this team has demonstrated how the services can come together for a common mission.
We have good days on the road and bad days, but no matter what I can always count on my team and they know that they can count on me.
 
I will risk my life for my fellow service members, someone I hardly know anything about, except that our purpose here, in this country is the same.  From this day forward I have gained an extended family and they are my brothers in arms.  
 
CW2 Paul Mercier
National Maintenance Advisor
Kabul Afghanistan
220th TC, 316th ECS
Keene, NH

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