Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

Posts made in: November, 2012 (17) Currently Viewing: 1 - 10 of 17

November 1, 2012 at 10:06am

McChord supporting hurricane clean-up after Sandy

A C-17 Globemaster III departed early morning Nov. 1 in support of Hurricane Sandy response operations. 

Along with aircraft and crews from 11 active duty, Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve bases across the nation, McChord Field Airmen are flying to March Air Reserve Base, Calif., to pick-up 10 passengers and 632 short tons of equipment and supplies supporting relief efforts on the East Coast.

"McChord Airmen are ready to answer our nation's call with the most capable combat airlift aircraft," said Col. Jeffrey Philippart, 62nd Airlift Wing vice commander. "Our C-17s and Airmen have the ability to deliver rapid global mobility, which enables us to respond quickly to disasters and provide aide in the wake of humanitarian crises. We're poised to respond."  

The passengers and cargo, including 69 vehicles belonging to the Southern California Edison utility company, are slated to arrive at Stewart Air National Guard Base, Newburgh, N.Y. at around 2:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, after which they will move out to support efforts to restore power and provide humanitarian assistance to the stricken region.

Historically, McChord Field Airmen have been on the lead of many humanitarian efforts. Most recently, a McChord C-17 was the first heavy aircraft to provide aid in Operation Tomodachi, the Japanese tsunami relief efforts, by being airborne within 19 hours of notification. In addition, the 62nd AW propelled Operation Pacific Passage, repatriating 2,600 family members stationed at military bases throughout Japan to safe-haven locations in the U.S.

November 1, 2012 at 1:25pm

Additional C-17 to depart in support of Hurricane Sandy relief efforts

A McChord Field C-17 Globemaster III and crew is scheduled to depart at approximately 9 p.m., Nov. 1 in support of continued Hurricane Sandy response operations.

McChord Field Airmen will be flying to March Air Reserve Base, Calif., to pick-up passengers, equipment and supplies supporting relief efforts on the East Coast.

The passengers and cargo are slated to arrive at Stewart Air National Guard Base, Newburgh, N.Y. after which they will move out to support efforts to restore power and provide humanitarian assistance.

November 2, 2012 at 6:47am

2012 Football Frenzy underway at AF clubs

Four Airmen will be headed to the "Big Easy" this Veteran's Day thanks to the Air Force club system during this year's Football Frenzy contest.

The package of airfare, rental car and hotel accommodations to see the New Orleans Saints host the Atlanta Falcons was the result of an Air Force club system drawing worldwide. 

Winners included Charles H. Doan, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J.; Staff Sgt. Andy Ford, Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Ohio; Edward Lanigan, Hurlburt Field, Fla.; and Col. Michael McNerney, Royal Air Force Station Mildenhall, England.

As Air Force club members, they participated in the annual Football Frenzy promotion at their local clubs, and their names were selected Oct. 12, during the first drawing of the 2012 season. Two more drawings are planned, but only club members who participate in Football Frenzy are eligible to win.

"Club membership comes with a variety of benefits, including the opportunity to win great prizes like tickets to a National Football League game," said Shirley Stevenson, Air Force Personnel Center Football Frenzy coordinator. "Football Frenzy and other special programs are a great way to thank members for their patronage, and they help promote membership as well."

Since the program was implemented in 1995, nearly 500 club members have been selected to attend NFL regular season and championship games.

The next Football Frenzy drawing will be Nov. 19 for the Dec. 13 game when the Dallas Cowboys host the Pittsburgh Steelers. The final drawing, Feb. 3, 2013, will be for the championship game, slated this year for New Orleans.

"NFL game tickets are already a great incentive to participate in Football Frenzy, but championship game tickets are huge," said Stevenson. "Few people can afford to buy them, but any club member in good standing could win them," said Stevenson.

Club members and their adult (18 or older) dependents are eligible to participate. Members must attend a Football Frenzy event at any participating club and fill out an entry form. All participating clubs submit the forms to the Air Force Personnel Center Directorate of Services in San Antonio, where drawings are held.

For more information about club membership and member benefits, go to www.afclubs.net.

For information about other services programs, visit www.afservices.com. For information about personnel issues, visit the myPers website at https://mypers.af.mil.

November 2, 2012 at 6:49am

Reservists can carry leave balance after training tours

In a "one-step-at-a-time" approach, Air Force officials have a new program for reservists to save and carryover leave time from year to year beginning Nov. 1.

Reservists performing duty under the Reserve Personnel Appropriation or RPA orders may now "save" their leave for future use. Prior to this change, reservists were required to use or sell leave earned on orders of 30 days or more.

RPA is a pay account specifically designed to pay reservists who are on a training tour of duty.

Any Airman serving a month of duty garners 2.5 days of leave. Previously, only Airmen in the Regular Air Force were allowed to save and carry up to 60 days of leave on the books as they cross the "use or lose" deadline on Oct. 1, each year.

Reservists cannot save their leave for next year if they are working on active duty under Military Personnel Appropriation orders, or MPA; as well as, in direct support of war taskings under Overseas Contingency Operations funds, or OCO. No action is required by reservists since the military's computer software automatically sells the leave and pays it to the service member.

Local military personnel flights can provide more information about the AFR Leave Carryover Program.

November 2, 2012 at 6:51am

McChord Airmen selected for Senior and Intermediate Development Education

Congratulations to the following individuals for their selection to Senior Developmental Education and Intermediate Developmental Education.

SDE:
Lt. Col. Eric Moritz - Naval War College
Lt. Col. Harmon Lewis - Naval War College
Lt. Col. T.J. O'Connell - Alternate

IDE:
Maj. Michael Haire - Air Command & Staff College
Maj. John Masterson - U.S. Army Command & General Staff College
Maj. Nathan Phillips - Joint Mobility Fellowship
Maj. Aaron Torczynski - Joint Mobility Fellowship
Maj. Jonathon Waller - Air Command & Staff College
Maj. Jason Ward - U.S. Army Command & General Staff College
Maj. Trace Dotson - Alternate
Maj. Michael Rasinski - Alternate

These officers have been selected from an incredibly competitive field of their peers to continue their Professional Military Education. They will now expand their knowledge and understanding of the role of joint military operations and how it relates to US national security objectives. They will have the opportunity to spend a year alongside officers from sister services, allies, and other U.S. government agencies to gain an appreciation and understanding of how the Air Force continues to strengthen its joint forces.

November 3, 2012 at 5:35am

62nd AW airmen ‘answer the call’

Tech. Sgt. Lavina Cannon, 50th Aerial Port Squadron technician, helps Tech. Sgt. Frank Patton, 570th Global Mobility Squadron contingency response aerial port team lead from Travis Air Force Base, Calif. with tying down a 43,520-pound electrical utility t

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - When our East Coast neighbors needed resources to restore power, they asked for help and airmen from the 62nd Airlift Wing were among the first to "answer the call" and provide the assistance they needed.

Within three hours of notification, the first 62nd AW crew departed McChord Field in the early morning hours, Nov. 1 to pick up equipment and passengers from March Air Reserve Base, Calif., and deliver them to Stewart Air National Guard Base, N.Y.

After 19 hours, another 62nd AW crew left to do the same thing ... all in the effort to assist fellow Americans.

The rapid response was made possible through the combined efforts of planners at U.S. Transportation Command, Air Mobility Command's 18th Air Force and the 618th Air and Space Operations Center (Tanker Airlift Control Center) operating as part of the U.S. Northern Command-led effort supporting the Federal Emergency Management Agency's storm response efforts.

"This is my first time supporting a humanitarian relief mission and I'm pretty excited," said Capt. Mike Perry, 4th Airlift Squadron pilot and aircraft commander of the second mission. "It's great to be able to help out our fellow Americans, even as far away as the West Coast. I'm proud of what we do and I'll never forget this."

It was also the first time for Airman 1st Class Magen Boles, 4th Airlift Squadron loadmaster, and she feels the same way.

"I'm enriched with honor," said the San Francisco, Calif., native. "I joined the Air Force to help support my fellow Americans and it is missions like these that make my job fulfilling. It makes me proud when I open the cargo doors and ramp to see people happy with smiles because I was able to deliver much needed equipment."

These trips were part of a total force initiative that includes airmen from more than 12 active-duty Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve bases providing support by transporting 69 vehicles belonging to the Southern California Edison utility company.

These vehicles will be used to support efforts in restoring power and provide humanitarian assistance to the damaged areas of the East Coast.

Although the second mission is now complete, the U.S. Air Force will continue to support East Coast residents in getting back to a normal way of life.

November 4, 2012 at 5:44am

62nd Port Dawgs do ‘whatever it takes’ to support hurricane relief efforts

62nd Aerial Port Squadron "Port Dawgs" prepare the ramp of a C-17 Globemaster III aircraft for the loading of a utility vehicle belonging to Seattle City Light, Nov. 3, 2012. The 62nd APS Airmen's unique nickname is an acronym of their mission statements

Airmen from the 62nd Aerial Port Squadron worked tirelessly through the night Friday and well into the afternoon Saturday to process more than 20 vehicles and support equipment destined for the East Coast to support Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.

The vehicles, sent from the Seattle City Light power company in Seattle, Wash., and Bonneville Power Administration, in Olympia, Wash., along with utility workers from those agencies, are being sent to locations in New York and New Jersey to help restore electrical power to residents there.

"The utility workers will be the ones doing the hard work back east, but I'm glad to play a part in getting them there so they can help out," said Tech. Sgt. Kyle Hersel, 62nd APS cargo processing supervisor.

The Deerlodge, Mont. native's job in the cargo deployment process is to ensure that all equipment going on a military aircraft is airworthy and safe
.
This can prove to be a difficult task when dealing with large vehicles that are not necessarily designed to travel on aircraft.

"Most pieces of equipment we deal with here on a daily basis have special tie-downs and are built specifically to travel on military aircraft," said Lt. Col. Robert Farkas, 62nd APS commander. "But these vehicles present a special challenge for us."

That challenge is dealt with at all levels throughout the deployment process, beginning at the load planning stage, all the way up to the point of getting the cargo onto the aircraft.

Another cargo processing supervisor with the 62nd APS, Tech. Sgt. Carrie Lee, is in charge of the load planning process. Her job is to balance the requests of the customer against the capabilities of the aircraft. She is also in charge of making sure any hazardous materials in the cargo are properly accounted for and dealt with.

For Lee, this mission hits close to home.

"My aunt lives back there, so it's especially important for me that I play a role in this," she said. "I can't be there to help with cleanup efforts, so it feels good to be able to get the workers and equipment where they're needed."

Helping to determine whether the customers' requests can be met falls on the shoulders of Port Dawgs like Airman 1st Class Joseph Flores-Constancio, 62nd APS cargo processing journeyman.

His job is to weigh and measure each piece of equipment going on an aircraft to ensure that it will be able to be loaded without damaging it or the aircraft. He must also determine the center of balance of each piece, so load planners can determine the best placement on the aircraft to ensure the plane is balanced properly.

His task requires precision, especially with atypical cargo, such as the electrical utility vehicles. Some of the vehicles clear the top of the inside of the aircraft by only a few inches. Without careful measurement, an oversized vehicle could cause severe damage.

Flores-Constancio, a native of Mong Mong, Guam, said being able to be a part of Sandy relief efforts is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

"I play a small part in this larger effort to help out those on the East Coast," he said. "It's small, but an important part."

That sentiment is also felt by Staff Sgt. Bradley Burfield, 62nd APS joint inspector from Russelville, Ala.

"It is very rewarding to be a part of this mission and getting this equipment where it's needed," said Burfield, who has the job of being the final inspector to determine airworthiness of the equipment before it's loaded.

The Airmen of the 62nd APS, or Port Dawgs, as they're called, live by the motto, "Whatever it takes."

"When tasked with any mission, and something needs to go on an aircraft, we need to think about how this is going to happen," said Farkas. "Whenever that happens, Port Dawgs will say, 'We'll make it happen - whatever it takes.'"

November 6, 2012 at 6:47am

Two more McChord C-17s to depart in support of hurricane relief efforts

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. - Two McChord Field C-17 Globemaster III's and 
their crews are scheduled to depart at approximately 7:30 & 8:30 a.m.
respectively, Nov. 6 in support of continued Hurricane Sandy response
operations.
McChord Field Airmen will be flying to Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New
Jersey, to drop-off Bonneville Power Administration passengers, equipment and
supplies supporting relief efforts on the East Coast.

November 7, 2012 at 6:38am

454 selected for promotion to chief master sergeant

More than 450 senior master sergeants have been selected for promotion to chief master sergeant, Air Force Personnel Center officials said. Those selected represent 22.9 percent of the 1,981 eligible for consideration, and when promoted will be among those who make up less than 1 percent of the enlisted force.

The promotion list will be available Nov. 8 at 8 a.m. Central time.

Airmen will be able to access their score notices on the virtual military personnel flight and the Air Force Portal.

The average score for those selected was 665.84, with an average time in grade of 3.04 years and time in service of 22.30 years. The average score for enlisted performance reports was 135. Average decorations score was 24.49, and the average promotion fitness exam score was 67.73.

Those selected will be promoted according to their promotion sequence number beginning in January. Selections are tentative until the data verification process is complete, which is no later than 10 days after the promotion release date. Airman will be notified if their selection is in question.

For more information about promotions and other personnel issues, visit the myPers website at https://mypers.af.mil.

November 9, 2012 at 6:50am

Congratulations to the 62nd AW's newest chief master sergeants

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- Three senior master sergeants from the 62nd Airlift Wing will soon be among the top one percent of the enlisted force.

The Air Force released the list of 454 senior master sergeants selected for promotion to chief master sergeant.

The following are the 62nd AW's newest chief master sergeant selects:
Senior Master Sgt. Armando Fajardo, 62nd Comptroller Squadron
Senior Master Sgt. Harvell, 7th Airlift Squadron
Senior Master Sgt. Richard Tallman, 62nd Maintenance Group

"Their hard work and dedication over the years have earned them a place in the top one percent of our enlisted force.... a truly impressive accomplishment," said Col. Wyn Elder, 62nd AW commander.

The average score for those selected was 665.84, with an average time in grade of 3.04 years and time in service of 22.30 years. The average score for enlisted performance reports was 135. Average decorations score was 24.49, and the average promotion fitness exam score was 67.73. Those selected will be promoted according to their promotion sequence number beginning in January.

Photo: McChord Field leadership and 14 chief master sergeants surprise two of the three senior master sergeants selected for promotion to chief master sergeant, Nov. 8, 2012, at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The three selected from the 62nd Airlift Wing were Senior Master Sgt. Armando Fajardo, 62nd Comptroller Squadron, Senior Master Sgt. Paul Harvell, 7th Airlift Squadron, and Senior Master Sgt. Richard Tallman, 62nd Maintenance Group. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Frances Kriss)

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