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July 16, 2013 at 2:03pm

On the ground with the 5th Air Support Operations Squadron

Airman First Class William Cole, 5th Air Support Operations Squadron keeps eyes on a target while an Apache helicopter hovers to provide fire support. Photo credit: J.M. Simpson

As I stood up and shook out my arms, I noted that Staff Sgt. Kris Harpoon, Airman 1st Class Micah Hancock, Airman 1st Class James Tran, Airman 1st Class William Cole, Airman 1st Class Jacob Stevens, 2nd Lt. Matthew Kinahan and Kreal were doing the same.

These 5th Air Support Operations Squadron airmen had been working hard for the past 80 hours with little food and less sleep. 

From running an obstacle course and sharpening their first aid skills to perfecting vehicle rollover practices and utilizing their land navigation abilities, the eight airmen I joined up with last Friday morning had every right to be tired.

The 5th ASOS is an Air Force asset that is vital to Army operations. Its primary mission is to provide tactical command and control of air power assets during combat operations.

Read my full story in Thursday's Northwest Airlifter. Below are a few photos I snapped Friday morning.

>>> Airmen assigned to the 5th Air Support Operations Squadron protect an injured Airman while an Apache hovers nearby during a training exercise. 

>>> Two High Value Targets, or HVTs, are detained while other members of the 5th ASOS prepare to egress from the objective.

>>> Airman First Class Jacob Stevens adopts a defensive position during a simulated attack.

LINK: 5th ASOS sergeant earns Bronze Star

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