VILSECK, Germany –
Even though there are more than 150 employees assigned or attached to the battalion, there are only two enlisted Soldiers working at Army Field Support Battalion-Germany – the battalion sergeant major and Staff Sgt. McKinely Suell III.
When you first meet this outgoing and highly animated staff sergeant, you can literally feel his energy. He presents himself very well – a professional Soldier, a great communicator and young Soldier at heart. But you might be surprised to learn he joined the Army almost 40 years ago.
“I signed a split option contract with the Army in high school and went to basic training at Fort Dix, New Jersey, in 1982 between my junior and senior years,” said Suell, a native of Boston. “And then I went to Advanced Individual Training at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, Texas, the very next summer to become a medical specialist with the U.S. Army.”
Over the next 39 years, Suell would serve in the active Army, Army Reserve, National Guard and now as an Active Duty Operational Support-Reserve Component, or ADOS-RC, Soldier with the 405th Army Field Support Brigade’s AFSBn-Germany in Vilseck.
“I’ve been at the battalion as an ADOS Soldier for about four years,” said Suell, who has lived in Germany for the past 30 years. “I love it here.”
Previous to working in Vilseck, Suell worked in Wiesbaden where his parent Army Reserve unit is based – the 209th Digital Liaison Detachment. The 209th DLD reports directly to the 7th Mission Support Command, Army Reserve’s forward-based mission command in Europe.
“I get to work with all the battalion staff personnel and with the Logistics Assistance Representatives,” said Suell, whose primary job is battalion travel administrator at AFSBn-Germany.
But Suell said he does pretty much anything and everything he can to support the battalion. He teaches classes, he administers physical fitness tests, he helps the budget office and he assists the personnel and administration office – but mostly he learns.
“This job has provided me with an opportunity to network and to receive hands-on knowledge from all these subject matter experts in their respective fields. I love it,” said Suell.
“I just spoke to a Reserve Soldier at the 209th DLD recently, and I told him that ADOS is the best option possible,” he said.
An ADOS-RC Soldier receives all the active duty benefits. The ADOS-RC program provides the Reserve Soldier an opportunity to develop professionally. The Reserve Soldier can cross-train into other fields. And the ADOS-RC Soldier will work for interesting and amazing commands, like AFSBn-Germany, said Suell.
“And the knowledge and experience you gain – you can take that with you and parlay that back to your Reserve unit when you return,” he said.
Being an ADOS-RC Soldier, Suell said he’s also been given an opportunity to promote the Army Reserve here in Europe.
“A lot of active duty Soldiers don’t know Army Reserve units exist in Europe and there are opportunities to serve in the Army Reserve here in Germany,” said Suell. “I’m pretty much a walking recruiter, in a sense, particularly in this battalion.”
“We are interacting with active duty Soldiers on a daily basis. When I tell them I am an ADOS Soldier, the first thing they do is ask what it is. Once I explain, they want to know how to sign up. ADOS is the literally the best of both worlds,” he said.
Suell has his very own best of both worlds. By day he’s an ADOS-RC Soldier, but at night and on the weekends – at least prior to COVID-19 – he’s also an international concert promoter.
“I promote a lot of shows. I bring a lot of acts and groups from the U.S. to Germany, mostly hip hop artists. I rent out night clubs and hold concerts or do special party events,” Suell said. “I’ve brought a lot of top-level hip hop acts over to Germany – Ne-Yo, 50 Cent, Lloyd Banks, DMX. I’ve done a lot of big names.”
About 20 ADOS-RC Soldiers serve in the 405th AFSB. Army Reserve Soldiers of all ranks can support units through the ADOS-RC program. ADOS-RC orders allow Soldiers to be used in a variety of ways to add temporary manpower support to various units. The orders can last one day or in some cases years. For more information on the ADOS-RC program, contact your local Army Reserve recruiter or Reserve command.
The 405th AFSB 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 the U.S. Army Materiel Command 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.