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Cannon Airman combat advisor near Kabul

  • Published
  • By Air Force Capt. Traci Bowman
  • Logistics Command Embedded Training Team
Summers in Afghanistan can reach unbearable temperatures, but that doesn't stop the dedicated men and women supporting Operation Enduring Freedom from completing their mission.

Tech. Sgt. Chad Vaughn is currently assigned to the 855th Air Expeditionary Squadron, Kabul, Afghanistan. Sergeant Vaughn, deployed from the 27th Special Operations Security Forces Squadron at Cannon AFB, N.M., is a JET Airmen (Joint Expeditionary tasking) serving in a "traditional" Army tasking. But after nine years, traditional is not so easily defined.

To prepare for his deployment, Sergeant Vaughn completed 10 weeks of Combat Advisor Training in addition to the standard predeployment training and was tasked as a combat advisor, Afghan National Army, Logistics Command, Security Kandak Battalion.

Quite a unique job for a Security Forces NCO, but a mission he has fully embraced and become admired for by his fellow Logistics Command Embedded Training Team members.

Sergeant Vaughn spends his days mentoring and advising the security battalion commander, chief of staff and command sergeant major as well as 575 security soldiers responsible for securing outlying logistic bases, fuel depots and ammunition supply points.

The security Kandak stood up while the senior advisor, Master Sgt. Johnson, deployed from the 204th Security Forces Squadron, Ft. Bliss, Texas, attended advisor training.

Fellow Air Force logisticians helped the Kandak order and receive initial supplies to complete their newly created mission. What was lacking was a team of security forces experts to guide the battalion into a strategic and tactical mindset to ensure success.

Sergeants Vaughn and Johnson were given the task to develop a respected and trusted security Kandak. Sergeant Vaughn has been successful in mentoring both senior officers and soldiers during his deployment.

He has taught the ANA to develop training plans for soldiers on proper vehicle and personnel searches, guardmount duties, placement of control towers, how to conduct Quick Reaction Force drills and how to develop and execute an effective manning schedule.

When the Kandak stood up, their focus was protecting their assets from themselves. Sergeants Vaughn and Johnson had to teach the commander and chief of staff that the job needed to be outward focused.

After successfully tackling the major problems within the Kandak, the sergeants developed a humanitarian mission so the ANA could establish a sense of community within the villages near the outlying posts.

Each week they lead a team of ANA soldiers and coalition forces to drop off clothing, water, and candy. What makes the mission so special is the empowerment of the ANA; after planning is complete, the chief of staff briefs the commander's intent and the ANA soldiers pass out supplies while coalition forces provide security.

The team convinced the ANA how important it was for the villagers to view them as a positive support system and that it would serve the ANA no purpose as just another humanitarian drop.

The results of the trips have been incredible as evident by the smiles on the faces of the children and ANA soldiers as the most successful and long-lasting impact the team accomplished during their time here.