Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

Posts made in: 'U.S. Air Force' (168) Currently Viewing: 21 - 30 of 168

June 3, 2013 at 9:23am

Why Washington state didn't receive the KC-46A

There's a good chance Washington state isn't below this KC-46A. Photo credit: U.S. Air Force

The Air Force has officially announced that the first active-duty led KC-46A main operating base (MOB 1) will be located at McConnell AFB in Kansas.  

According to the results of the Air Force's site surveys, the selection of McConnell AFB will allow for the Special Operations Air Refueling training mission to remain close to its primary customers in the Southeast.

Fairchild AFB, located in Spokane and home to the 92nd Air Refueling Wing, was chosen to be one of two alternative bases - a decision that did not sit well with Gov. Jay Inslee given that Boeing built the KC-46A aircraft.

"This is an extremely unfortunate decision by the Air Force. Fairchild Air Force Base has a strong tradition as an integral part of our national defense and is ideally located, particularly as U.S. strategy calls for directing greater attention to the Pacific theater. The Air Force's decision today does not follow that important national policy," Inslee wrote in a public statement.

Read more...

Filed under: News To Us, U.S. Air Force,

May 29, 2013 at 10:14am

Air Force libraries launch "Have Book - Will Travel" summer reading program

Summer is just around the corner and it won't be long before the kids get bored. Head them off at the pass with adventures and activities hosted by your local library.

Air Force libraries have launched the summer reading program, "Have Book - Will Travel!" and are planning a host of activities for children, teens and adults designed to encourage the love of reading. Program participants can also win prizes for reaching their reading goals, said Margie Buchanan, the Air Force Personnel Center libraries branch chief.

Read more...

Filed under: Education, U.S. Air Force,

May 16, 2013 at 5:44pm

Air Force Reserve Master Sgt. Robert Shulman enters chef contest

Organizers of Alaska Air Cargo's annual "Copper Chef Cook-off" have announced the contestants in this year's chef competition.

(Record scratch sound)

OK, only one to us. Air Force Reserve Master Sgt. Robert Shulman, a 31-year Airman and chef, will represent Joint Base Lewis-McChord's 446th Airlift Wing during the chef competition at 6:30 a.m. tomorrow at Seatac Airport.

(Record scratch sound)

That's right, 6:30 a.m. It's a yearly tradition for Alaska Airlines to fly in the first Copper River Salmon of the season - Alaska's premier wild salmon - touching down before the sun comes up, then forcing the area's best chefs to cook the fish in a competitive atmosphere.

Read more...

May 9, 2013 at 1:33pm

F-35 Lightning II's real-time data system is a game changer

An advanced F-35 Lighting II joint strike fighter taxis on Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. arriving to the Air Education Training Command F-35 schoolhouse, May 6, 2013. U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicholas Egebrecht

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AFNS) - The Air Force took another step forward with its newest fighter jet when an advanced F-35 Lightning II landed at the service's lead training base, home to the largest fleet of F-35s worldwide.

The new stealth fighter kicks off a major training effort at the F-35 schoolhouse on an aircraft with unmatched capabilities.

The F-35 is the military's newest stealth fighter jet. Students from all military branches who are learning to fly the plane go through the schoolhouse at Eglin, including some from international services.

In addition to a few design improvements, the major difference between the new aircraft and others is sensors and software.

Read more...

Filed under: U.S. Air Force, Defense News,

April 6, 2012 at 1:46pm

Seasoned Medical Service Corps officer continues to learn on latest deployment

Members of the 651st Expeditionary Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron Critical Care Air Transport Team work together to load patients onto a C-130H Hercules for an aeromedical evacuation at Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan.

MCCHORD FIELD, Wash. -- Even with a diverse skill set and years of training and experience, Maj. Peter Jorgensen proves there's always something new to learn.

The 28-year medical professional has held many positions throughout a lucrative career, beginning as an enlisted logistician on active duty, up to his current responsibilities as a Medical Services Corps officer with the 446th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron here.

Now, the Reservist serves in Afghanistan with the critical role as director of operations for the 651st Expeditionary Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron in Kandahar, overseeing the daily duties of more than 100 people, who support around-the-clock aeromedical evacuations for more than 100,000 NATO troops.

"Major Jorgensen is a dedicated Medical Service Corps officer with a wealth of experience, from his time serving with the (446th Aeromedical Staging Squadron here) and now with the 446th AES," said Col. Janette Moore-Harbert, 446th AES commander. "This experience has allowed him to help facilitate the depth of the patient movement process from the staging facility into the operational and flying element of the AE system. He not only brings that to this current deployment but also to the 446th AES, allowing us to be better patient providers by understanding our partners roles and responsibilities in the ASTS, in order to ensure a seamless and smooth patient movement system." 

With Jorgensen being an air Reserve technician, a full-time Reservist who helps maintain the continuity and combat readiness of the traditional Reservists, thanks Moore-Harbert, not only for contributing to his growth as a 446th AES Reservist, but for allowing him to serve overseas.

"I owe a great deal of thanks to my commander, for allowing me to deploy and grow as a military member," said Jorgensen, a Lakewood resident. "Being an air Reserve technician, it was no small sacrifice for her and the rest of the unit when I volunteered for the deployment." 

Jorgensen easily applies his homestation training to his deployed function.

"This mission is a lot like the way we train in the 446th AES during our exercises and local missions during the month and UTA weekends," said Jorgensen. 

Although he's learning a lot in his current assignment, it isn't his first rodeo. In fact, most of his deployments as an officer with the 446th ASTS are directly tied to his mission with the 446th AES.

"This is my third deployment and I feel right at home here from the fact that I started as a Medical Service Corps officer attached to the 446th ASTS," said Jorgensen. "During my eight years with the ASTS, I had the opportunity to deploy to Balad Air Base (Iraq) in 2006. I was functioning both in the (Contingency Aeromedical Staging Facility) as an administrator and as a launch and recovery officer for more than 100 missions. Little did I know at the time, the launch and recovery along with crew management was exactly what we train for in the (446th AES). I can honestly say that my wartime success can be directly contributed to my countless 446th Airlift Wing training opportunities over the years." 

But wealth of experience isn't the only factor which has made Jorgensen's deployment a success. He says bringing out the best in his troops, so they can perform is critical.

"Relationships with your people are key to your success as a leader, and they need to be maintained in order to bring out the best in them- even if it's not their best day," he said. "As an officer, I've become better and more knowledgeable at reading the signs as whether someone is having a good or bad day." 

Even as his deployment comes to a close, Jorgensen still has his eyes on the reason he's there.

"There are a lot of people making huge sacrifices both here and at home for us to be successful," said Jorgensen. "It's been a huge learning experience and one that I look forward to bringing back to my unit and the wing." 

Moore-Harbert stresses her pride in having Reservists, like Jorgensen representing the 446th AES.

"I am very proud of him and his ability to excel and represent the 446th AES anytime and anywhere," she said.    

April 6, 2012 at 1:14pm

Air Force tries to deal with suicide rate

From military.com: Air Force leaders at all levels must fight the problem of suicides within the service by developing a culture of healthy airmen across the board, said the service's top enlisted man Thursday.

"We've got to talk about" the problem of airman suicides openly, look at suicide rates, discuss lessons learned from suicides and even acknowledge "saves," said Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, James Roy, during an April 5 luncheon on Capitol Hill.

"Some have said, don't talk about it, I just throw that aside," said Roy. "When somebody commits suicide, some people would say that I shouldn't be sharing the [suicide] numbers the way I share them. Why not? How do I tell what happened last April or last March if I don't show you where we are today? How do I compare the two?"

The Air Force lost 99 airmen in 2010 to suicides, 90 in 2011 and 35 so far in 2012, making suicide the service's leading cause of death, according to slides presented by Roy during his presentation.

The Air Force must avoid turning its efforts to develop a culture of healthy, resilient airmen into a "check in the box" training program, said Roy.

To read the rest of the story, click here

Filed under: Health, U.S. Air Force,

April 4, 2012 at 4:50pm

McChord Field introduces new mass notification system

Wouldn't it be nice if you could instantly know of any emergency situation on base? What if you and your family could receive a text message to your personal mobile phones any time there is a threat? With the new emergency mass notification system being fielded at McChord Field this spring, this will become a reality. 

McChord Field's new AtHoc Alerts system can notify Airmen, civilian employees and their dependents within minutes of an emergency event. These notifications range from force protection condition changes and anti-terror warnings to driving conditions, reporting instructions and base disaster responses. 

Several Air Mobility Command bases have already successfully installed AtHoc Alerts. In fact, Joint Base Lewis-McChord's own I Corps 24/7 Watch Office is already using AtHoc Alerts right next door. 

Eventually, all AMC bases and the AMC Command Center will implement this system. The 62nd Airlift Wing Command Post is the McChord Field operator of the system and will send base-wide notifications or alerts and provide reports to the commander as needed. 

For McChord Field, the 62nd AW commander also has the authority to approve any other organization's important alerts on a case-by-case basis through the Command Post. A small "purple globe" icon will appear in the desktop icon tray to let you know the program is available on your computer. In fact, the AtHoc system has already been installed on most of McChord Field's computers. 

In order to begin receiving alerts, all Airmen and those civilians designated as "key" and "Level A and/or B" must update their contact information by using the AtHoc Alerts Self Service module at their work desktop. Just right-click on the purple globe, select "access self service" and update accordingly. 

All Airmen and those civilians designated as "key" and "Level A and/or B" will provide at a minimum: name, organization, duty phone, duty e-mail and an after-hours contact phone number. You can provide additional contact information such as an off-duty email address as well. 

Providing emergency notification information in AtHoc is not mandatory for all other civilian personnel. However, all civilian personnel are encouraged to provide personal contact data in order to receive vital safety and emergency information for themselves and their families in the event of a base incident or a natural disaster. 

During an actual event or a test of the AtHoc system, the alert will include a specific set of instructions. Ensure you read the entire alert and/or listen to the entire message. Then respond accordingly, usually by selecting a numeric response provided in the message.  

(Courtesy Maj. Aaron Torczynski, 62nd Airlift Wing Command Post chief) 

April 4, 2012 at 1:00pm

Mentoring program discusses leadership techniques

Senior Master Sgt. Andrew Goodnight, 627th Force Support Squadron, discusses leadership techniques during a speed mentoring session March 23, 2012, at the McChord Field Chapel Support Center, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. During monthly speed training sessions, senior noncommissioned officers provide advice concerning topics ranging from enlisted performance reports to fitness evaluations.

(U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman Leah Young)    

April 4, 2012 at 10:38am

Fairchild Airman missing after canoeing trip

From Air Force Times: SPOKANE, Wash. - Search teams are looking for a 26-year-old airman from Fairchild Air Force Base who's believed missing after taking his canoe out on the Spokane River.

Friends of James Ramse-Lassiter located his truck on Monday, parked at Riverside State Park at the Bowl and Pitcher area of the river. His canoe has not been found.

The Spokane County sheriff's office says Lassiter went out in his canoe sometime Saturday. Preliminary reports indicate he did not have a helmet, life jacket or exposure suit when he went on that outing.

Sheriff's deputies searched the area by jet boat and jet skis on Monday. Fairchild and the Border Patrol both provided helicopters to aid in the search.

Deputy Craig Chamberlin says searchers have heard from two people who say they saw a canoe Saturday while walking on a trail along the river. That may help focus the search.

April 2, 2012 at 4:47pm

Family pins new Reserve vice commander

MCCHORD FIELD, Wash. - Newly promoted Col. Rick Grayson gets pinned on by his family March 30 at McChord Field. Grayson is the new vice commander for the 446th Airlift Wing. In his civilian life, Grayson is a 737 first officer for Alaska Airlines, and lives in Gig Harbor with his wife and two children.

(U.S. Air Force photo by 2nd Lt. Denise Hauser)    

Recent Comments

abigail said:

you are say about this Air Force highly recommends absolutely right and i appreciate your...

about Air Force highly recommends renters insurance

nurisahi juan said:

This is real take it serious, my name is marian i, who will believe that a herb can Cure...

about JBLM soldier completes ALS

Ken Beseau said:

Its always a treat to be able to get on base and all of the planes from around the world come...

about AMC Rodeo to have new life

Electrician Rochester NY said:

Thanks for giving us nice info. Fantastic walk-through. I appreciate this post.

about Don't be shocked: 446th electricians find the spark

thomas candey said:

way to go usaf soon will be flying a kc46 air craft made right here in everett wash.not france...

about