643rd Regional Support Group mission benefits more than 1,000 Soldiers

By Staff Sgt. Adam Decker | 358th Public Affairs Detachment | Aug. 20, 2018

CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. — The RSOI is the gateway for all Army mobilizations; it sets commanders and Soldiers up for success in their theater of operations.

While maintaining operations 24 hours each day, the RSOI personnel first in-process more than 1,000 Soldiers coming to the CSTX and then out-process the same group.

“RSOI is a key component of any exercise or mobilization; because it allows commanders to build combat power before projecting to the tactical assembly area, said the 643rd RSG Commander Col. William Wilkerson. “It also allows units and Soldiers to increase their capability, readiness and lethality as they conduct their exercise and prepare for onward movement of potential mobilization.”

The in and out processing involves many aspects like personnel accountability, equipment staging, temporary lodging, and operational briefings. The briefings include information about meals, showers, lodging, vehicle maintenance, medical and environmental concerns, as well as rules of engagement for the battlefield. 

“They learn a lot of things,” said Wilkerson. “They learn the commander’s intent for the exercise, they learn the uniform posture, they learn their role, and it puts them in the right mindset for them to be successful and also provides the standards for success throughout the whole event.”

Maj. Kevin Carter, chief logistician of the 643rd RSG said Soldiers come away from RSOI with key information about their upcoming mission.

“They get a brief about the nation they will be in, on the logistics setup; when and where they can do laundry, take showers, eat their meals, and get maintenance for their vehicles.”

Carter spends most of his time moving equipment and supplies.

“My favorite part of this mission is actually being able to fix problems that occur,” said Carter. “I like to find and fix those problems and then make sure that everyone has a good safe training exercise and that everybody gets to go home.”

“It is great to be here and work with these Soldiers,” said Wilkerson, “conducting combat operations and learning their tradecraft and increasing capability and lethality.”