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A tight fit
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam—U.S. Marine Corps Pfc. Gregory Morris, a Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 115 aviation ordnance technician, from Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, loads ordnance onto an F/A-18 Hornet during training here, Oct. 20. U.S. Marine and U.S. Navy units worked closely with Airmen during their month-long deployment to the base. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Benjamin Wiseman/Released)
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Andersen hosts U.S. Marine training

Posted 10/24/2011   Updated 10/24/2011 Email story   Print story

    


by Senior Airman Veronica McMahon
36th Wing Public Affairs


10/24/2011 - ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- In the military it is a servicemember's duty to be technically and tactically proficient in their jobs as well as prepared to deploy and face tomorrows fight. These standards are upheld through training and exercises.

While Team Andersen takes pride in continuously training, for the month of October, Andersen Airmen provided assistance to 400 members of a different service.

Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron 12, Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 115 and Strike Fighter Squadron 94 arrived on Andersen Oct. 6 to conduct aerial and ground training and bolster combat readiness.

"The Marines and Navy are here on a joint exercise to explore the air space around Guam and do training missions to keep our pilots current on their qualifications and keep enlisted Marines current on maintenance and what they do day to day in their line of work," said Marine Chief Warrant Officer Joy Craig, currently deployed here for the exercise.

The deployers came equipped with twenty Marine F/A-18s and have logged more than 200 flight hours, 120 sorties conducting air-to-air and air-to-ground training. Due to the training mission there has been a lot more activity in the air space and on the flightline.

Their time training here has given the servicemembers the opportunity to work together, as well as Airmen the chance to support partnership efforts within the Air Force and the military.

According to 36th Maintenance Group personnel, Andersen Airmen are providing help with maintenance workspaces, aircraft hangar space and a foreign object free runway making this joint training visit a successful one.

"Since the exercise began the flightline has been a lot busier," said Tech. Sgt. Jose Sanchez, 36th Wing Foreign Object Debris monitor. "And having fighters on deck is a lot different than heavies. As far as FOD goes we have been doing our regular practices, and above and beyond that, many other sight inspections due to the training."

"Certain back shops have also been helping with assistance," Sergeant Sanchez said. "And the 36th Civil Engineer Squadron Horizontal Shop members are the real unsung heroes as far as sweeper support."

Along with supporting the increase in activity, Airmen have been assisting the Marines as well. And along with maintenance, operations have also had a crucial role this past month.

"Every facet of the 36 OSS has assisted in enabling the Marine and Navy F/A-18 missions," said Lt. Col. Robert Horton, 36th Operations Support Squadron deputy. "We began by providing approximately 450 airfield driving certifications that enabled the Navy and Marine forces the ability to maintain and operate their jets. Our Airfield Operations flight has maintained the airfield, ensuring capabilities required by fighter aircraft were operational and provided timely response to any airfield issues, while our Air Traffic Controllers worked surge ops supporting windows of constant aircraft launch and recovery."

Yet the colonel said Airfield Ops isn't where the support ended.

"The 36 OSS weather flight provided 21 weather Watches, Warnings, Advisories and 30 verbal weather briefings that helped protect ATR assets and personnel. Furthermore, the Operations and Plans flight has been instrumental in integrating ATR flying into the wing flying schedule and proving workspace and equipment for their use."

The combined efforts of the Airmen from various units did not go unnoticed.

"The Airmen at Andersen have been very helpful," CW02 Craig said. "Everything from vehicle support to messing facilities to access on the flightline, and also the Sailors with the HSC-25s have helped out a lot too. Everybody's been supportive of what we are doing here."

Their time training here has been a joint effort, Sergeant Sanchez said. There's been a lot of preparation, coordination and working together.

"The Aviation Training Relocation conducted at Andersen has proven as an ideal opportunity for training in joint operations," Colonel Horton said. "Team Andersen Airmen from across the wing have been crucial to making this high-emphasis training happen."



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