Mobility Guardian planning - informing the community

By Staff Sgt. Naomi Shipley, 62nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs on April 28, 2017

Lt. Col. Dan DeYoung, Joint Base Lewis- McChord Mobility Guardian director, met with community leaders at the Lakewood Military Affairs Committee, April 18, to brief and inform on what impact the community can expect from the upcoming Mobility Guardian Exercise that will take place here July 30 through Aug. 12.

"Air Mobility Command is calling this their premier or inaugural Mobility Guardian exercise," said DeYoung. "There will be twelve days of activity for the exercise. There will be approximately 3,500 participants coming in and eleven nations participating."

The exercise will challenge air crews to employ skills they've been taught, but also in a scenario that they may experience in the real world.

"This whole exercise is treated like a deployment," said DeYoung. "We're going to have an air drop component, people and equipment component, air land, low level, air refueling, assault landing, formation flying, and we're going to do it with dissimilar aircraft."

The whole exercise will be a transition from competition to training the way we fight, and a big component of the exercise is humanitarian relief operations, which is what Air Mobility Command supports.

"This is probably the first time we want to test our mobility air force skills and everybody else participating is supporting us," said DeYoung. "Every aspect of mobility training will be exercised."

DeYoung emphasized just how significant this exercise will be to our airmen, but also how significant it will be to our communities. He informed them how the base working with the community partners and businesses and informing them of the footprint of this large-scale exercise will better enhance the understanding of what we're doing and why.                                                                                                                                          

"It really is training dollars (time and money spent) improving our capabilities, testing the training we've already done and coming up with lessons learned (where is our training falling short?)," said DeYoung. "After I retire, I will be supporting the military the same way you all are, from the community."