From the Frontlines: Senior Airman Brian Kohl

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- For many drivers, getting from point A to B is common day-to-day practice. However, many deployed Airmen conducting non-traditional operations down range, face dangers when tasked with convoy duty.

The tasking for Air Force Global Strike Command Senior Airman Brian Kohl, a 509th Logistic Readiness Squadron vehicle operator, was no different during his last deployment to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, with the 424th Medium Truck Detachment.

Airman Kohl departed Whiteman in July 2009 for Basic Combat Convoy Course at Camp Anderson-Peters in Camp Bullis, Texas, for 30 days of training before arriving at his duty assignment. Alongside other Airmen from Whiteman, Airman Kohl learned basic combat skills required to integrate with joint forces in convoy operations.

"The missions we conducted involved strategic planning," said Airman Kohl. "We inspected our gear, made sure we had what we needed, loaded up and pushed out. Additionally, we scanned for any problems that we might encounter along the way."

This was Airman Kohl's second deployment and because of his experience and training he was assigned as the alternate radio terminal operator.

"I was the person who set up the communication and navigation equipment," Airman Kohl said. "I ensured all trucks were able to communicate with one another."

While preparing for convoys, Airman Kohl said part of the mission was to deliver various supplies to forwarding operating bases in Iraq.

"Supplies are needed for the troops to be able to get the job done," Airman Kohl said. "Not just for the Air Force, but for the Army, Navy and Marines as well."

In addition to his responsibilities, Airman Kohl said he had daily duties to attend to.

"We inventoried trucks, supplies, moved sandbags and reorganized trailers," he said. "It was a lot of busy work."

In between convoys, Airman Kohl used his time to prepare for the next mission and relaxation when able.

"I went to the gym and corresponded with family and friends," he said. "It helped to pass the time."

Airman Kohl said he enjoyed the integration with people from other bases all across the Air Force and said the best thing about the deployment was the adrenaline rush of arming up and going outside the wire.

Airman Kohl returned to Whiteman in March and said he missed his family, friends and privacy, but would do it all over again because he loves his country and is proud to serve in the nation's armed forces.