Sunday, September 27, 2015

Crash Disabled Damaged Aircraft Recovery team provide Heavy Lifting

by Senior Airman Shane S. Karp
177th FW/PA

9/23/2015 - NAVAL AIR STATION WILDWOOD AVIATION MUSEUM, N.J. -- More than 20 members of the 177th Fighter Wing Crash Disabled Damaged Aircraft Recovery team participated in training, Sept. 19, involving crane lifting an F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft at Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum, New Jersey.

The 177 FW CDDAR team is a secondary duty for these airmen, and includes specialists from almost every Air Force Specialty Code within the maintenance squadron.

"The training is necessary for completing a tri-annual certification, and the real-world use is in the event an F-16 is immobile and needs to be lifted by a crane and moved off the runway area," said Tech. Sgt. Robert Taylor, a CDDAR team member. "Our main goal is to remove the aircraft as quickly and safely as possible, without causing any secondary damage,"

"We haven't had to use this maneuver in a real-world scenario, and hopefully never do, but this team is very capable of handling it," said Master Sgt. Chris Foye, a 177 FW CDDAR team member.

"In the event a plane went down, we need airmen that are familiar from each component," Taylor said. "Not everybody is specialized in everything, but everyone is specialized in something."

D.C. National Guard supports Papal visit to Washington, D.C.

by Senior Airman Erica Rodrigues
113th Wing Public Affairs

9/24/2015 - WASHINGTON -- More than 150 Airmen from the 113th Wing, D.C. Air National Guard volunteered as task force support for visit of Pope Francis here, Sep. 22-24.

Sworn-in and deputized by the D.C. Metropolitan Police as special police, the Airmen served as a standing police force for the event that attracted thousands of spectators to the D.C. area.

Domestic operations is one of the many ways the 113th Wing supports its community. This event, Operation Roman Watch, was a culmination of both Army and Air Force from the D.C. National Guard.

"There are over 500 Guardsmen in this task force which makes the logistics difficult, but as Capital Guardians, we are trained and equipped to handle this mission," said Capt. Duane Peterson, Operation Roman Watch deputy task force commander. "We are happy to support the local community and making this a safe event for all is our honor," said Peterson.

Proper training prepared all members for event. As task force, members maintained crowd and traffic control, as well as enforcing the law.

"Operation Roman Watch was my first task force," said Airman 1st Class Darla Robertson, 113th Maintenance Squadron aircraft electrician. "My duties included security checks for those who attended the parade. I was excited and nervous about the event, but the briefing and training for the task force prepared me for it."

The event proved to be another successful domestic operation from the D.C. National Guard.

Hawaii Air National Guard completes first ever Indonesia air defense subject matter expert exchange

by Senior Airman Orlando Corpuz
154th Wing Public Affairs

9/24/2015 - JAKARTA, Indonesia -- Air defense experts from the Hawaii Air National Guard completed a three day Subject Matter Expert Exchange near Halim International Airport here Sept. 15-17, with counterparts from Indonesia,

This was the first time a SMEE involving air defense had been conducted between the HIANG and Kohanudnas, the component of the Indonesian armed forces responsible for air defense.

"The team's immediate goal was to lay the foundation for a productive relationship between the Hawaii Air National Guard and the Kohanudnas." said Maj. Michael O'Donnell, 169th Air Defense Squadron Mission Crew commander. "Long term, we would like to have an enduring partnership with the Kohanudnas that promotes stability in the region."

The exchanges were part of the National Guard's State Partnership Program. The program matches a state's National Guard with a partner country in order to build capacity and reinforce security cooperation.  Program partners engage in a wide range of security cooperation activities such as homeland defense, disaster response, and interagency cooperation.

"The State Partnership Program is a Department of Defense joint security cooperation program administered by the National Guard." said Maj. Robert Galino, Theater Command and Control Officer with the 109th Air Operations Group.  "It supports the combatant commander's security cooperation objectives and Ambassador's intergrated country strategies."

A team of seven HIANG personnel from the 169th ADS and 109th AOG engaged with Kohanudnas on topics ranging from air battle management, target identification, target tracking, and data transmission.

"It's very important to share experiences with air defense and to learn and collaborate with each other as we share in the common goal of peace and security." said Galino.

"We hope to continue our relationship with not just include the tactical level, but operational and maybe strategic."

The partnership with Indonesia was just one example of the HIANG's execution of the SPP mission and reflects the National Guard's growing international affairs mission. In August, the HIANG hosted air defense officials from the Philippine Air Force for bi-lateral learning and discussions. The HIANG teams up with the Guam National Guard to execute the SPP mission with the Philippines.

Currently, the National Guard maintains SPP relations with 76 nations around the world.

"The purpose of the State Partnership Program is to build mutually beneficial military relationships with foreign nations. This is accomplished by face to face interactions that foster professional and personal contacts." said O'Donnell.

Angela Rose delivers message about sexual assault

by Senior Airman Duane Duimstra
114th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

9/25/2015 - Joe Foss Field, S.D.  -- The founder of Promoting Awareness/Victim Empowerment spoke to members of the South Dakota Air and Army National Guard, and members of the community here Sept 10, to talk about how our culture perceives victims of sexual assault and ways to prevent these perceptions.

Angela Rose spoke about her experiences highlighting ways our community could prevent sexual assaults from happening and how to help victims.

Her presentation was part of the training for Sexual Assault Response Coordinators and Victim's Advocates.

"We decided to bring Angela in because of her personal experience as a victim and an advocate. Our focus was to make the training different and engaging which Angela accomplished without question," said Maj. Travis Schuring, 114th Fighter Wing executive support officer and SARC.

At the age of 17, Rose was a victim of kidnapping and was assaulted by a repeat sex-offender. Her experience led her to create PAVE to increase sexual assault awareness and help victims heal.

"I really admire the victim empowerment, and who better to have the knowledge come from, than a victim." said Abbey Rotter, 114th Fighter Wing knowledge operations manager, about the PAVE program.  "I also agree with her stance on education; education is key and her campaigning to push the message down, all the way to middle schools, is imperative."

A guest panel of community leaders was held to discuss the issue of sexual assault and the organizations and programs the city of Sioux Falls has that are combating this problem. The panel was made up of Sandra Minter, Sanford Health Academic Affairs, Sara Krekelberg and Melissa Muggs, from the Compass Center, Ashley McDonald, attorney for the South Dakota Department of Corrections in the State Penitentiary, and Maj. Travis Schuring.

"I was really intrigued by listening to Ashley McDonald and her perspective on rehabilitating offenders and what is happening inside the facility walls," said Rotter.

The presentation was helpful for everyone in attendance. It gave the attendees a better understanding of ways to prevent assaults from happening and ways to help victims.

Horsham Air Guard undergoes exercise, real-world tension during SKorea training event

by Col. Thomas James
111th Air Operations Group

9/25/2015 - HORSHAM AIR GUARD STATION, Pa. -- From August 17 - 28, members of the 111th Attack Wing deployed to Osan Air Base, South Korea, for Exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian 2015.

Ulchi Freedom Guardian is the annual Republic of Korea and U.S. Forces Korea defense-oriented exercise designed to enhance Combined Forces Command's readiness, protect the region and maintain stability on the Korean peninsula.

The second of two Korean deployments for the 111th ATKW this year alone, UFG 2015 involved 30,000 U.S. troops alongside 50,000 South Korean counterparts. Members from around the 111th ATKW and 193rd Force Support Squadron, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, were integrated into the Air Force forces staff, a medical group, a security forces unit, a simulation cell and many other duties.

Working 12-hour rotating shifts on both the exercise and during real world tensions, UFG 15 featured a number of scenarios and training. The operations were meant to improve response to military strikes, potential terrorist attacks, and the use of chemical or biological weapons in major South Korean cities.

During the 111th ATKW's time in Korea, real world tensions were at a 20-year high; and North Korean mines seriously wounded two South Korean border guards. North and South military forces exchanged artillery fire along the de-militarized zone, air defense aircraft were airborne on combat air patrol. According to open news sources, more than 50 North Korean submarines -70 percent of their fleet - set sail from their bases as tensions rose. North Korea had also ordered its front-line troops onto a war footing during this drastic rise in tensions.

News sources cited that North Korea saw the exercises as a veiled threat of war. The source stated that Kim Jong-un, the supreme leader of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, had vowed to respond with the "strongest military counteraction" if UFG 15 was not canceled.

UFG 2015, however, pushed on.

There were seven United Nations Sending States participating in UFG 15: Australia, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, France, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.  Also, the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission monitored UFG 15 to ensure its compliance with the Korean Armistice Agreement, signed in 1953.

So, despite the threats and real-world military action taken against the region, the Pa. Air National Guard and participating entities completed their mission. Once again, continuing forward with operations, the 111th ATKW and its members displayed professionalism and dedication at home and abroad.