CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan --
In the hot afternoon sun temperatures can reach more than 100 degrees, but one Marine battles the heat to keep things cool for his fellow service members stationed here.
Lance Cpl. Joshua Daniel Flores, a refrigeration mechanic 9th Communication Battalion, I Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward), goes into work every day to do one thing keep his fellow Marines and critical equipment from overheating.
“His mission is important because he creates a controlled climate environment for the critical communications equipment here, which creates a lot of heat in an already hot environment,” said Sgt. Jeremiah Loeffler, air conditioning section head and quality control for 9th Comm Battalion.
Flores is in charge of monitoring three different sites that contain living spaces, offices and critical communication equipment. He keeps track of more than 170 air conditioning units, performs bi-weekly preventative maintenance service and responds to trouble calls whenever the units malfunction.
Even though Flores has so many people relying on him to get his job done, he always manages to stay upbeat.
“He has a good work attitude, likes to learn, and he never does the bare minimum,” said Loeffler.
Flores enjoys the senses of satisfaction he gets when he successfully repairs an air conditioning unit. It’s also rewarding to know his supervisors have the confidence to trust in his work, said Flores.
The biggest challenge Flores faces is the harsh environment and inclement weather that give the air conditioning units a beating. To keep the units working in these hostile conditions Flores is constantly moving and working. Despite the rigors of his job, he keeps himself motivated by in knowing that he is doing his part to keep Camp Leatherneck running smoothly.
“Bi weekly I go to all my A/C units, I do visual inspections, make sure they’re good, and clean the dust filters,” said Flores confidently. “Right now, I already know just by the wind which ones are dirty.”
Although Flores’ job requires him to be out in the blazing hot sun, he takes pride in knowing he plays a critical role in helping others keep their cool.