In May 2023, the 190th LRS sent 30 Airmen in five different Air Force Specialty Codes to train with the 31st LRS and the 724th Air Mobility Squadron, which is assigned to the 521st Air Mobility Operations Wing, headquartered out of Ramstein AB, Germany. Ten Airmen from the 190th Air Transportation Flight integrated into the 724th who had just kicked off Swift Response 23, the first of three major Defender 23-linked U.S. European Command exercises in Europe.
“Members of our 190th ATF assisted the 724th AMS with cargo, ramp, and passenger terminal operations during an exercise with coalition forces,” said Staff Sgt. Ryan Wagner, 190th ATF air transportation craftsman. “The training was valuable because it allowed younger Airmen to see how active-duty Air Force operates.
“The opportunity to work with coalition forces during an AT trip is very rare for us,” said Wagner. “Working with them during this exercise and creating relationships is a great benefit I’ll always appreciate.”
Two members were assigned to the 724th’s Air Terminal Operations Center, receiving training on information controller duties, and gaining experience with capability forecasting to ensure appropriate personnel and equipment were in place to accept inbound aircraft and cargo.
“The opportunity to witness problem-solving techniques in action and engage in hands-on experiences with various sections of Air Transportation has been incredibly beneficial for my professional growth,” said Senior Airman Genson Simecka, 190th ATF air transportation journeyman. “Having part in their day-to-day roles greatly improves our perspective on what we could implement at the 190th ATF for a more efficient operation.”
190th ATF Airmen assisted with the Passenger Services section, processing 1,103 troops from partner nations and expedited their movement down range for participation in the ground exercises.
“Though we were working real world missions, my leadership and the leadership of the 724th AMS understood that this was also a great training opportunity,” said Senior Airman John Baybutt, 190th ATF air transportation journeyman. “I was given hands-on experience processing passengers, loose cargo and loading rolling stock onto C-17s. I was also thankful for the knowledge of my fellow airmen, who never hesitated to answer any of my questions.”
Before departing Aviano AB, 10 Airmen were recognized for their efforts in this major exercise with Air and Space Force Achievement Medals presented by the 724th AMS commander, Major Phillip Kapets.