RED HORSE Squadron members return from deployment in Niland, San Clement Island, Calif.

Approximately 80 Airmen of the Virginia Beach-based 203rd RED HORSE Squadron deployed to California to provide much-needed services for the Naval Special Warfare Group One at Camp Billy Machen, Niland, and San Clemente Island, Calif., in three rotations from May 20 to June 26. (Contributed photo)

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Members of the Virginia Beach-based 203rd RED HORSE Squadron returned June 26 from a deployment during which they provided much-needed services for the Naval Special Warfare Group One at Camp Billy Machen, Niland, and San Clemente Island, Calif.

At Niland, the Airmen installed a 24 feet by 120 feet concrete pad under a sunshade. They demolished the existing main gate apron and installed a new 30 feet by 70 feet concrete apron. In preparation for future pre-engineered buildings, they installed two 30 feet by 42 feet concrete pads and footers, as well as new electrical services.

Additionally, for one of the existing buildings at CBM, the Airmen installed an air compressor and distribution lines, new electrical service and receptacles for the welding area, and new electrical circuits for additional receptacles.

At San Clemente Island, the Horsemen provided rock crushing and quarry operations. The mission was to produce various blends of crushed material to support current and future construction projects on the Island.

The deployment kicked off May 20, 2012. There were three rotations – the first with 38 personnel, the second with 35, and the third closed out with five guardsmen.

“Overall, it was a good deployment for us to intermingle seasoned tradesmen with younger journeymen to perform a lot of the skills we normally don’t get to apply on a regular basis – particularly services,” said Maj. Stock Dinsmore, the officer in charge for the second rotation.

The deployment yielded a rare opportunity to provide long term food planning, preparation and service.

“It gave us some valuable training. We were working with the Navy – different processes, procedures, getting to understand how they do business,” said Maj. Jeffrey Getz, officer in charge for the first rotation.

“The training also provided frontline supervisors a lot of exposure in leading and training the new troops. We didn’t exactly get all the tools we requested, so we had to work with what we had, much like you’d experience on an actual deployment,” said Getz.

The mission accomplishments of the Airmen will directly impact the quality of training for NSWG One, not to mention the invaluable training opportunities they were provided.

“They overcame many obstacles – heat, poor support, lodging issues, material issues – and accomplished great work,” said Lt. Col. Pete Garner, 203rd RED HORSE Squadron commander.