Yokota squadron packs up quake aid bound for Pakistan
Stars and Stripes October 31, 2005
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan — Seventeen pallets loaded with U.S. Army Japan supplies marked for earthquake relief left here Saturday for Pakistan.
The 71,710-pound haul — which came from the 35th Supply and Service Battalion at Sagami Depot west of Tokyo — includes tents, blankets, beds and pillows.
Yokota’s 730th Air Mobility Squadron spent about two hours Friday processing the cargo for shipment.
Military officials said a commercially contracted Boeing 747 is handling the delivery and no U.S. forces are part of the dispatch. The materials are being funneled to disaster survivors through the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad.
Last weekend, the 10th Area Support Group at Torii Station, Okinawa, sent a similar aid package to the region, said Maj. Martha Brooks, a U.S. Army Japan spokeswoman. Aircraft mechanical problems prevented the Sagami Depot batch from leaving Yokota at the same time.
The contributions come from reserve stock maintained by the Army specifically for humanitarian assistance, she added.
Brooks said Army officials appreciate the opportunity to provide help in times of tragedy.
“We’re always happy to help out,” she said. “It’s part of our mission to keep stock ready to assist in any humanitarian relief, so that the Army can always chip in.”
The Oct. 8 earthquake that struck the northern areas of Pakistan has killed 55,000 people and left more than 3 million homeless. Officials say the death toll is likely to rise.