by Senior Airman Timothy Moore
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
8/26/2015 - OTOPENI AIR BASE, Romania -- Spirits
were high among the participants of exercise Carpathian Summer as the
first week came to a close Aug. 20, at Otopeni Air Base, Romania.
The exercise, which was designed to increase readiness and
interoperability between the U.S. Air Force and Romanian air force, was
not the first time the allies have trained together and had already
shown the progress prior exercises had produced.
In previous exercises with the 37th Airlift Squadron, Romanian pilots
aided the U.S. pilots by providing intelligence about the area and the
weather they would be flying in for planning purposes. For Carpathian
Summer, the Romanian pilots flew alongside their partners in formations
made up of U.S. Air Force C-130J Super Hercules and Romanian air force
C-27J Spartan aircraft.
"It's not only a matter of how you plan or execute a mission," said
Romanian air force Lt. Col. Emil Tecuceanu, 902nd Transport and
Reconnaissance Squadron commander and Carpathian Summer director.
"Today, we are flying in a peaceful environment. Tomorrow, we could
fight together, and we have to know each other's techniques in order to
be successful in the mission. This is the main objective of such
The first week of the two-week long off-station training exercise,
though suffering from minor setbacks due to weather, produced favorable
results as pilots, loadmasters, maintenance personnel and other
supporting members conducted training which increased their proficiency
as well as allowed them a view at the Romanian forces' operations.
"It's been fantastic," said U.S. Air Force Capt. Lindsey Kinsinger,
Carpathian Summer mission commander. "The Romanians are extremely
helpful. They have been supporting all of our requests, and they're
always here to learn from us and give us feedback we need to improve our
Approximately 80 personnel and three C-130Js spent the first week working on a multitude of training events.
U.S. Air Force pilots conducted low-level, day and night flying
operations, dropping both cargo and personnel. Thus, loadmasters were
able to complete training involving loading and dropping airborne
deliveries that allows them to support real-world contingencies.
Romanian paratroopers also practiced both freefall and static line
airborne operations alongside their U.S. counterparts, further
increasing their infiltration capabilities.
The 37th AS swapped out personnel on Aug. 21 to allow for more
individuals to experience working alongside their NATO allies, and with
the kinks ironed out during the first week, these personnel and their
Romanian counterparts stood the have the chance to get even more value
for the remainder of the exercise.
"My favorite part is when I see my guys and all the squadrons involved
flying and executing missions," Tecuceanu said. "This is the most
exciting part of an exercise, as a squadron commander, when you see your
guys accomplishing the mission together with your partners."
Tecuceanu said he looks forward to how the two forces will evolve while training and conducting missions together in the future