Sailors and civilians from NAVSUP Fleet Logistics Center (FLC) Norfolk provided logistics support to USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) prior to the hospital ship getting underway for New York March 28.
NAVSUP FLC Norfolk provided food, pharmaceuticals and medical supplies, linens and fuel to the ship in the week prior to its departure.
According to NAVSUP FLC Norfolk Logistics Supply Officer Lt. Cmdr. Chris Sands, the command assisted in Comfort receiving 286 pallet of food provisions, valued at nearly $700 thousand dollars. In addition, the command delivered more than 500 thousand gallons of fuel via barge to Comfort.
Sands cited Logistics Support Representatives (LSRs) Victor Rodriguez and Keith Durham for their efforts in ensuring the crew of Comfort had what they needed to get underway. LSRs are an experienced source of support, with the ability to work with many other divisions and commands to ensure our customers receive the materials and provisions they need to execute missions efficiently and on-time.
“This allows the ship to free-up personnel to concentrate on other initiatives, whether it is training, or supporting an influx of personnel as in the case with Comfort,” Sands explained. “LSRs are capable in a dynamic environment, regardless of the mission, they can adapt and deliver a multitude of products to the customer.
He added that Comfort provides a unique challenge due to the ship’s need for medical supplies and pharmaceuticals, due to the need to coordinate with more entities than normal provisions.
“This contributed to a challenging and fluid environment,” he added.
NAVSUP FLC Norfolk Fuels Department Director Kevin Henderson added that his team of Sailors, civilians and contractors take great pride in their role in supporting the Department of Defense effort to help fight COVID-19 in a very visible way by providing the fuel that powered Comfort’s trip from Norfolk to New York.
“I am proud of their effort and happy to be part of this amazing team,” Henderson said.
While in New York, the ship is serving as a referral hospital for non-COVID-19 patients currently admitted to shore-based hospitals, providing a full spectrum of medical care to include general surgeries, critical care and ward care for adults. This allows local health professionals to focus on treating COVID-19 patients and for shore-based hospitals to use their Intensive Care Units and ventilators for those patients.
NAVSUP FLC Norfolk is one of eight FLCs under Commander, NAVSUP. Headquartered in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, and employing a diverse, worldwide workforce of more than 22,500 military and civilian personnel, NAVSUP’s mission is to provide supplies, services, and quality-of-life support to the Navy and joint warfighter.