Group Title: Gulf Defender
Title: The Gulf defender
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00098691/00007
 Material Information
Title: The Gulf defender
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 38 cm.
Language: English
Creator: United States -- Air Force. -- Tactical Air Command
Publisher: Panama City News Herald
Place of Publication: Panama City Fla
Panama City Fla
Publication Date: July 7, 2006
Frequency: weekly
regular
 Subjects
Subject: Air bases -- Periodicals -- Florida -- Panama City   ( lcsh )
Periodicals -- Tyndall Air Force Base (Fla.)   ( lcsh )
Genre: newspaper   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Issuing Body: "... published ... under written contract with Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla."-- Masthead.
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 43, no. 15 (April 24, 1992).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00098691
Volume ID: VID00007
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 60411523

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GULF


DEFENDEDE


Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla. Training Expeditionary Airpower Experts


Satellite pharmacy
re-opening
The Satellite Refill
Pharmacy at the Base
Exchange has been
renovated and will
be open for business
July 24. All refill op-
erations at the Main
Clinic will be termi-
nated at that time.
The Refill Phar-
macy operating hours
are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.,
Monday Friday.
The automated re-
fill call-in number
is 283-7177 or (800)
356-5273

Munitions storage
closure
The Munitions
Storage Area will be
closed to all custom-
ers from July 31 to
Aug. 4. All munitions
customers should
project their needs
accordingly and plan
ahead for this closure.
Only valid emer-
gency issues will be
processed during this
period. For more in-
formation, call 283-
4010/2374.



Family Support Center
services...
PAGE 6
End of Runway Air-
men ensure safety ...
PAGE 8
Engineers go beyond
virtual reality ...
PAGE 14


Chrissy Cuttita
Guts and bolts...
Staff Sgt. Scott McElroy, 325th Maintenance Squadron avionics technician, gets ready to climb into
an F-15 cockpit to conduct a radar operations check. On day one of phase operations, maintainers
prepare the jet for safe maintenance and check for needed parts. See the story on Pages 10-11.


NSPS training mandatory for supervisors


MELANIE McGuIRE
325th Mission Support Squadron
Base personnel will be chang-
ing the way they do business as
approximately 125 non-bar-
gaining unit personnel assigned
to Tyndall will convert to the
National Security Personnel
System Jan. 21, 2007.
This conversion from the
General Schedule System
marks the beginning of a
landmark transformation of
the Department of Defense's
human resources from a lega-
cy civilian personnel system,
with its rigid structure and
heavy reliance on seniority, to


a pay-for-performance system.
"One of the strongest char-
acteristics of NSPS is the direct
link between pay, performance
and mission accomplishment,"
said Col. Brian Dickerson, 325th
Fighter Wing vice commander.
"Under NSPS, employees will
be rewarded for their perfor-
mance and contributions that
are aligned with achieving their
organization's goals."
In preparation for NSPS im-
plementation, the 325th Mis-
sion Support Squadron civilian
personnel office is ensuring
Tyndall's commanders, super-
visors and non-bargaining unit


employees are fully trained
and prepared to meet the chal-
lenges ofNSPS through various
soft skills and technical training
methods.
All supervisors of appropri-
ated funds General Schedule
employees and all non-bargain-
ing unit employees are required
to take NSPS 101 training on-
line at www.cpms.osd.mil/nsps/
nspsl0l.
"Supervisors will find NSPS
101 informative and beneficial
with an excellent overview of
the NSPS," said Giles Sanchez,
NSPS training manager who re-
cently completed the course.


NSPS will provide employees
with an efficient and effective
performance management sys-
tem that will value, recognize
and reward their contributions
to the mission, further promot-
ing the core values.
Seveml NSPS training op-
portunities will be offered in the
upcoming months with dates
and times to be announced
when available. The keys to a
successful conversion for our
Team Tyndall non-bargaining
unit workforce will be a strong
implementation plan, senior
leadership support and commu-
nication.


Trust, T eamwork, Train


Vol. 65, No. 26


July 7, 2006






Gulf Defender


Can you identify this
object? If so, send
an e-mail to editor@
tyndall.af.mil with
"Identify this" in the
subject line. Three
correct entries will
be chosen at ran-
dom and drawn from
a hat to select the fi-
nal winner. The prize
can be claimed at the
Public Affairs office.
No one correctly
guessed the June 30
edition of "Identify
this." Look out for
the photo again in a
future issue of The
Gulf Defender


"I went to the beach and hung out
with my friends."

AIRMAN JEREMY DENNEY
Ground Radio Maintenance


"I spent time with my family
and friends."

MASTER SGT. PHILIP GAYLORD
NCO in-Charge Radio Maintenance


I
&li'


L

SV


"My wife and I walked down to
the beach and had a picnic."

AIRMAN IST CLASS
MATT WORLEY
Computer Technician


A1


"I took my daughter to the fire-
works display to watch her reac-
tion."

MATT NEEDHAM
Architect


Gulf Defender Editorial Staff

Col. Tod Wolters.....................................325th FW commander
Maj. Susan A. Romano...............chief, 325th FW public affairs
Chrissy Cutitta................................chief, internal information
Senior Airman Sarah McDowell....................................editor
Staff Sgt. Stacey Haga ........................................staff writer


The Gulf Defender is published by the Panama City News Herald, a private firm
in no way connected with the U S Air Force, under exclusive written contract with
Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla This civilian enterprise Air Force newspaper is an au-
thorized publication for members of the U S military services Contents of the Gulf
Defender are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U S govern-
ment, Department of Defense or Department of the Air Force
The appearance of advertising in this publication, including inserts and supple-
ments, does not constitute endorsement by the DOD, the Department of the Air
Force or the Panama City News Herald of the products or services advertised
Everything advertised in this publication shall be made available for purchase,
use or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age,
marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other non-merit factor of
the purchaser, user or patron


Editorial content is edited, prepared and provided by the 325th Fighter Wing
public affairs office Photographs are U S Air Force photos unless otherwise
noted
The deadline for article submissions to the Gulf Defender is 4 p m Friday,
prior to the week of publication unless otherwise noted Articles must be typed
and double-spaced, preferably on a 3 5-inch disc Stories should be submitted
directly to the public affairs office, Building 662, Room 129 or mailed to 325
FW/PAI, 445 Suwannee Ave, Tyndall AFB, FL, 32403-5425 or e-mailed to edi-
tor@tyndall af mil Public affairs staff members edit all material for accuracy,
brevity, clarity, conformity to regulations and journalistic style The delivery of
the Gulf Defender to Tyndall base housing sections is provided by the Panama
City News Herald
For more information, or to advertise in the newspaper, call (850) 747-5000


.N.-


Beam me up Isaac Gibson
Beam me up
The 240th Combat Communications Squadron from McEntire
Air National Guard Station, S.C. and Air Forces Northern demon-
strate the Eagle Vision system to visiting government officials.
The satellite system can be used to acquire images from satel-
lites in orbit and use them for purposes such as homeland de-
fense and assessing structural damage after natural disasters.


325th Communications Squadron Focus:


What did you do for


the Fourth of July?


Page 2


July 7, 2006


r.q
1


-in. 1.h~ ..


1






July 7, 2006 OM N RY Gulf Defender Page 3



Airmen in Action: Trusting character to win wars


COL. MARC LUIKEN
325th Mission Support Group commander
The Global War on Terror has
dramatically changed the way we
fight wars and for the Air Force,
those who are actually on the front
lines of combat have significantly


changed as well.
You don't have
to be a flyer or a
special operator
to end up in com-
bat anymore. Our
front-line combat-
ants come from
all Air Force spe-
cialties, especial-
ly in the mission
support arena.
Right here in
the 325th Mission
Support Group


ploy into the area of responsibility.
They all succeeded because of
their training and, more important-
ly, because they had something in-
side them that caused them to make
the right choice when faced with a
combat situation.


"lour willingness to serve
your country already says
something about your char-
acter. Continue to build on
that foundation by choosing
the character-building path in
even the simplest decisions."

COL. MARC LUIKEN
325th MSG commander


we've had warriors engaged in com-
bat operations, as recently as Air
Expeditionary Force 9/10. Com-
munications Airmen have called in
air support on insurgents during a
convoy attack; Logistics Readiness
Division members have manned
.50-caliber machine guns, sending
hot lead down range against an in-
surgent attack and civil engineers
searched and cleared insurgent safe
houses while on patrol with their
Marine partners.
Still others survived improvised
explosive device attacks because
of their up-armored humvee added
protection. These are just a few ex-
ample situations our Airmen now
find themselves facing as they de-


Action Line
Call 283-2255


COL. TOD WOLTERS
325th Fighter Wing commander


Trust is ab-
solutely es-
sential in
combat and
it starts right
here at home.
If I can't trust
the person sit-
ting in the cu-
bicle next to
me or working
on the flight
line with me
to make right
choices, how


am I going to trust them to do the
right thing when mortars are fall-
ing on our tent city or our convoy
is stopped at an unexpected road
block?
We develop trust daily inside and
outside our work centers, on and off
base when we demonstrate our will-
ingness to make the right choice,
even when it costs. We build trust
because we have developed and
cultivated the character demanded
of a leader.
"Leadership is a potent combi-
nation of strategy and character.
But if you must be without one, be
without strategy," General H. Nor-
man Schwarzkopf said about the
significance of character.


The Action Line is your direct line to
me. It is one way to make Tyndall a better
place to work and live.
The goal is to provide you with an ac-
curate, timely response. You must leave
your name, phone number or address to
receive a response.
Questions or comments of general
interest will be published in this forum.
This avenue should only be used after
coordinating problems or concerns with
supervisors, commanders, first sergeants
or facility managers.
If you're not satisfied with the response
or you are unable to resolve the problem,


Senior Airman Sarah McDowell
Members of the 325th MSG don their mission-oriented protective
posture gear during an exercise here. All Airmen must be trained
and ready to deploy no matter what their career field.


Your willingness to serve your
country already says something
about your character. Continue to
build on that foundation by choos-
ing the character-building path in
even the simplest decisions. It's
a practice that will eventually be-
come a habit, a habit that will carry
you through when the crisis arises
or you find yourself in combat.
Our ability to win this war de-
pends on the character of leaders
at all levels in every service. Our
nation depends on us to be men and
women of impeccable character.
Your character tells the world
who you are. Do you cop out or dig
out of a difficult situation? Do you


call me at 283-2255.
For fraud, waste and abuse calls,
you should talk to the 325th Fighter
Wing Inspector General's Office,
283-4646.
Calls concerning energy abuse
should be referred to the energy hot
line, 283-3995.
Below are more phone numbers
that help you in resolving any issues
with a base agency.
Commissary 283-4825
Pass and I.D. 283-4191
Medical and Dental 283-7515
MEO 283-2739


bend the truth or do you stand under
the weight of it? Do you take the
easy money or do you pay the price?
We don't get to pick our talents, our
parents, or who we work with or for.
But we do choose our character, and
we create it every time we make
choices.
As this war on terror continues,
many of you will find yourselves in
combat or similar crisis situations
where we will need to make critical
decisions. We all are or will be lead-
ers in our Air Force. Trust is foun-
dational to leadership. People will
not trust leaders whose character
they know is compromised, and they
will not continue to follow them.


MPF 283-2276
SFS Desk Sgt. 283-2254
Services 283-2501
Legal 283-4681
Housing 283-2036
CDC 283-4747
Wing Safety 283-4231
ADC 283-2911
Finance 283-4117
Civil Engineer 283-4949
Civilian Personnel 283-3203
Base Information 283-1113
Thank you for helping me improve
Tyndall and I look forward to hearing
from you.






Page 4 Gulf Defender


Canada, U.S. celebrate special day


CHRISSY CUTTITA
325th Fighter Wing PublicAffairs
Two countries whose militaries fought side
by side for years defending the North American
continent fought against each other Friday in a
friendly competition called volleyball.
Tyndall's Canadian Component Forces
sought to defeat their American counterparts
over the net for the third year in a row during
a time where both countries celebrate their
nation's independence.
"The Canada day festivities here build ca-
maraderie and let us remember where we come
from in a place where we are normally just
mixed in," said Lt. Col. Kelly Kovach, Canadian
Element commander.
The Canadians didn't get the trophy this
year, but Tyndall leadership and the commu-
nity joined in the food and fun at Bonita Bay to
help celebrate the 139th Canada Day with their
brothers-in-arms.
"We trained all year long for this great come-
back and the training paid off," said Master
Sgt. Kim Stroud, Operations Requirements


Air Operations Center manager. "It was a
grueling match and I think the 'home turf'
advantage may have played a big part in our
win because I think a few of the Canadians,
not being used to the heat and humidity, were
actually melting. However, they were very
competitive and it came down to the final
minutes of game three before the win was
determined."
"It was a fair game, fairly won; to the vic-
tor go the spoils," said Colonel Kovach. "Of
course we will try and win back the title."
Since the 1980s, Canadians have been
stationed with NorthAmericanAerospace De-
fense Command support, and since the 1990s
they have been integrated in the daily opera-
tions at Air Forces Northem located here.
Twenty five Canadian families are per-
manently posted here and some who were
stationed here before retired in the area and
continue to keep in touch.


/l


Isaac Gibson
Canadians and Americans from Air
Forces Northern celebrate Canada
Day by playing volleyball at Heri-
tage Park Friday.


July 7, 2006






Gulf Defender Page 5


Despite stormy start, 'Katrina baby' thrives


SUSAN GRIGGS
81st Training Wing PublicAffairs
KEESLER AIR FORCE BASE, Miss.
(AFPN)-
No, her name is not Katrina.
Sage Madison Post's dramatic birth at Keesler
Medical Center during a cesarean section by flash-
light as Hurricane Katrina stormed ashore was an
inspirational story in the tumultuous days after the
storm.
However, without the family's consent, federal
regulations to protect the privacy of personal health
information kept many details of the birth from be-
ing released.
A handwritten note and photos slipped under the
door of the 81st Training Wing's public affairs of-
fice almost 10 months later filled in the blanks of
the family's story.
"I started carrying around a copy of Sage's birth
certificate because people acted like they didn't be-


lieve me when I told them about her delivery dur-
ing Katrina," said Stephenie Post, the wife of Se-
nior Airman Aaron Post of the 81st Transportation
Squadron.
The Posts and their then-2-year-old daughter,
Austin, joined other expectant parents who were
sheltered at the Keesler Medical Center. Mrs. Post
was 39 weeks pregnant and scheduled for a cesar-
ean section Aug. 30, the day after the hurricane
pounded Keesler.
"We watched the trees in the wind through little
windows as the storm blew in," she said. "Before
the power went out, we were watching TV and
playing video games to keep from getting bored."
When the storm surge flooded the medical cen-
ter's basement, the generators became inoperable
and left the facility without power. Families had to
drag their belongings upstairs in the dark to safety.

SEE BABY PAGE 15


Kemberly Groue
Life is getting back to normal for Senior
Airman Aaron and Stephenie Post, shown
here with 3-year-old Austin and 10-month-
old Sage Madison.


July 7, 2006





Page 6 Gulf Defender


Family Support Center provides 'Best Beginnings'


Photos by Senior Airman Sarah McDowell
Left, SeniorAirman Parris Kawaauhau, 95th Aircraft Maintenance dedicated crew
chief assistant, goes through the steps of cardiopulmonary resuscitation on a
dummy during infant and child CPR class. Above, Anita Pembleton, Family Sup-
port Center, briefs new mothers and fathers about services they and their children
can receive from the military. Various agencies from Tyndall are included in this
briefing. For more information on these quarterly programs, call 283-4204.


^ffArs
~.-4


July 7, 2006





Gulf Defender


Congratulations to

Tyndalls NCO

Academy graduates
Distinguished graduate
Kimberly Muhlecke,
325th ADS


Roy Anderson,
325th MDSS
Adam Clark,
325th CS
Michael Graves,
325th AMXS
Jamar Jordan,
325th MXS
Raisean Lasenberry,
325th ACS
Scott Linza,
REDHORSE
Darren Maring,
325th ADS
Phillip Pittman,
327th TRS/Det. 4
Richard Pratt,
28th TES
Jodi Rusticelli,
325th MOS
Jacob Sanabia,
AFCESA
Kelica Snipes,
325th SVS
Charles White,
325th AMXS
Alijhondroe Wiley,
325th SFS


U mm UU m UU mU m Um mU U UU mU U mU UU U UU UU U mU UU


~-z~f~n` ~


5


Tech Sgt. Penny Blackburn


statr ggt btacey Haga


Sergeant Blackbum receives the Checkertail
Salute Warrior of the Week award from Col.
Tod Wolters, 325th Fighter Wing commander.
Sergeant Blackburn produced the first consoli-
dated in-flight guide for the 325th FW. She taught
console familiarization to nine air control students
and trained two 325th Air Control Squadron weap-
ons technicians in initial qualification training.
Sergeant Blackburn has been an active commu-
nity volunteer, raising more than $1,000 for Hiland
Park Elementary and helping Bay County set up a
Big Brothers/Big Sisters chapter.
.. m.n... mini i nmm nmnU m U.


Duty Title: NCO in-charge of 325th Opera-

tions Group standards and evaluations

Time on station: Two years and six

months

Time in service: 14 years

Hometown: Johnson City, Tenn.

Goals: Earn bachelor's degree in social

psychology

Favorite thing about Tyndall: Living at a

vacation destination

Proudest moment in the military: I got a

line number for master sergeant and an F-15

familiarization flight within two weeks.



The Checkertail Salute is a 325th Fighter Wing commander program de-
signed to recognize Tyndall's Warrior of the Week Supervisors can nomi-
nate individuals via their squadron and group commanders. Award recipi-
ents receive a certificate, letter from the commander and a one-day pass.
mm.mmn n................


July 7, 2006


Page 7


~F~~gk -~--


ba






Page 8 Gulf Defender


EOR Airmen are last stop for safety checks


STORY AND PHOTOS BY
STAFF SGT. STACEY HAGA
325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
They run from jet to jet,
ensuring the safety of every
F-15 Eagle and F-22 Raptor
that takes off from Tyndall's
runway.
With beads of sweat on their
foreheads, these maintainers
quickly and thoroughly check
the jet for any exterior issues
that could prevent the jet from
having a safe flight.
End of Runway Airmen are
the last maintainers to inspect
the jet prior to takeoff.
This team of Airmen per-
forms an inspection of aircraft
tires, panels, doors and looks
for any gas, oil or hydraulic
leaks after the aircraft taxis to
the runway.
Sometimes things can hap-
pen to a jet after engine start
up and after taxi that could
make the aircraft unsafe for
flight.
The EOR team's job is to
catch these safety issues and
correct them.
"It is the last look inspection
on the aircraft before the pilot
takes off, so we are ensuring
the aircraft is flight ready be-
fore the pilot goes to the run-
way," said Tech. Sgt. Dathan


.. .. ....-- -.
.............................
. ... . ..... ...... .... ....... .... ...........


Senior Airman Dennis Rodriguez, far right, 325th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, clears an F-15 for take-off
after the End of Runway team inspects the aircraft and removes the safety pins.


Brown, 325th Aircraft Mainte-
nance Squadron assistant sec-
tion chief of EOR operations.
"We are verifying nothing has
changed since the aircraft tax-
ied out. We make sure compo-
nents are not leaking, and the
jet did not run over something


that could have cut the tire be-
yond limits."
The inspection is very quick,
averaging one minute for the
Raptor and two minutes for
the Eagle.
"The F-15 takes longer,
because we are actually talk-


................
.................. -' ,,i. ............ ......:.:"........ ::Z.. ... .....
Tech,.. .. F-1 m ayu p .



Tech. Sgt. Dathan Brown inspects an F-15 for any safety issues prior to takeoff.


ing to the pilot and remov-
ing weapon safety pins from
the aircraft," said Sergeant
Brown.
The Raptor has no safety
pins to remove and maintain-
ers are unable to talk to the pi-
lot due to security reasons, he
explained.
Even though the inspection
is quick, safety is a top con-
cern of EOR Airmen.
"We are working with taxi-
ing aircraft so everyone has
to be very aware of their sur-
roundings," he said. "Engine
intakes and hot jet exhaust are
avery big safety concerns. All
of these are all handled with
constant situational aware-
ness.
EOR inspects about 76 air-
craft per day, normally making
their schedule fast-paced. The
Airmen often run from one in-
spection to the next to ensure
each jet makes its scheduled
takeofftime.
They also inspect the F-15
Eagle after it lands, checking


for hot brakes, chaff, and re-
inserting the safety pins be-
fore clearing the aircraft to the
taxiway.
Regardless of the hectic
schedule, the Airmen view
EOR as a unique learning op-
portunity.
"I get to learn about both
jets working here and get dual
qualification," said Staff Sgt.
Jeremy Vance, 325th AMXS
EOR team supervisor.
The learning experience
transcends into the different
career fields also.
"I'm a weapons loader and
I get to learn things about
crew chief duties here," said
Senior Airman Chris Sachtle-
ben, 325th AMXS EOR team
member.
"We have camaraderie and
great teamwork," said Ser-
geant Brown.
It is this teamwork that
enables the EOR team to ef-
ficiently inspect Tyndall's
F-22s and F-15s and help ac-
complish the mission.


July 7, 2006






Gulf Defender Page 9


T"INING SINOTUGwu


ABMs connect NCA, warfighter


Tai Sp


2ND LT. MATTHEW PERRY
325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
It's the mission for many Airmen to
make sure they keep the military's air-
craft safe from harm.
It is the mission for another dedicat-
ed group of individuals to direct these
aircraft into harm's way while still up-
holding the other mission of keeping
them safe.
Air battle managers continuously
communicate with pilots to keep them
up to speed with any updates of any
aircraft that may be in the area that
could be hostile.
"ABMs are experts who mange the
executions of air-to-air and air-to-
ground combat missions under the
guidance of the national command
authority," said Capt. Virgil Gibbs,
325th Air Control Squadron instructor.
"We are the link between the National
Command Authority and the warf-
ighter in the air and on the ground."
ABMs begin their training for
this responsibility here at Tyndall's
325th ACS. The squadron graduates
approximately 200 students each year
from the nine-month program, which
includes instruction on different for-
mations and exercises, capabilities
of various fighter aircraft, the differ-
ent air-to-air and air-to-ground arma-
ments available for use, as well as the
various threats to the jets.
"I wanted to be in the operations
side of the Air Force and to be able to
fly on planes. I also like being part of
a high-valued asset," said 2nd Lt. Co-
lin Cavanaugh, a 325th ACS student
who is almost ready to graduate from
the program.
Initially, the students learn about
the different types of radar and how
they work. Next, they learn how to
direct two planes to meet head-on,
side-by-side and procedures to guide
jets to a tanker for safe air refueling
operations. The students then take
eight flights in the MU-2 twin-engine
turboprop plane to get the pilot's per-
spective of the air battle manager/pi-
lot communication link.
"Students fly on the MU-2 so they
can appreciate first hand the work
load of the pilot and use the proper
communication at the proper time."
Captain Gibbs said.


Capt. Virgil Gibbs, briefs 2nd Lt. Jenn Bloomer, an ABM student,
about air-to-air and air-to-ground missions.


Back on the ground, students con-
trolling the MU-2 get the feel of live
control but on a much slower scale.
The dots on the radar scope move
much slower compared to an F-15
Eagle, so a student has more time to
correct an error.
After successfully passing the
MU-2 course, the students enter the
large force exercise block, which
mimics a war. They interact as an
E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and
Control System crew, where they ap-
ply rules of engagement, controlling
aircraft and the computers and Air
Force doctrine.
"The large force exercise block pre-
pares the student to execute wartime
missions in an environment where
they can have 50 plus aircraft under
their control," Captain Gibbs said.
"The goal is to give the student the
big picture of the battlefield and the
assets to execute the entire air task-
ing order."
The final phase of their training
involves controlling the Eagles. By
now, the students have completed
112 of their 160 training days. In this


phase, students begin with one-on-
one intercepts, and gradually work
up to two-on-two engagements.
"The final phase is when the stu-
dents get to control high performance
aircraft such as the F-15 and the F-22
(stationed here). They learn their tac-
tical skills and provide information
to the pilots so they can effectively
execute air to air engagements." Cap-
tain Gibbs said.
Following those training flights,
the B-course pilot and ABM students
debrief to exchange information and
learn how to communicate more ef-
fectively with each other.
"In the debrief they review the
mission using both air combat ma-
neuver instrumentation and com-
munication playback," said Captain
Gibbs. "This is where students can
play back missions in a second-by-
second environment. We analyze
aircraft tactics and communications
procedures to develop desired learn-
ing objectives. These objectives are
then used in subsequence missions to
increase the skills and knowledge of
the students."


After you graduate next
week, where will you go?

First I'll complete Survival
Evasion Resistance Escape train-
ing and then I will move to War-
ner Robins AFB, Ga., to learn the
Joint Surveillance Target Attack
Radar System Platform.

2ND LT. BETSY SCOTT
325th Air Control Squadron
air battle manager student








Questions about
retraining?
Call the 325th Fighter
Wing Career Assistance
Advisor, Master Sgt.
Albert Lewis at 283-2222.



FORCE TI'RAININi6


U1 -



EP I
_u_ ou #u


July 7, 2006






Gulf Defender


Page 10


STORY AND PHOTOS BY
CHRISSY CUTTITA
325th Fighter Wing public affairs
Every 200 flying hours, an F-15
will dock itself in the 325th Mainte-
nance Squadron's phase dock to be
picked apart and examined for qual-
ity assurance by maintenance pro-
fessionals.
"Like on your vehicle, aircraft
parts (including the airframe) wear-
out/fail and get damaged after hours
and hours of use," said Senior Mas-
ter Sgt. Ron Wagner, 325th MXS
flight chief. "The inspection is used
to discover and correct items which,
over time, would eventually become
dangerous safety-of-flight issues.
This becomes more and more impor-
tant as the aircraft get older."
Engineers have certain items with
specific life cycles so the 325th Air-
craft Maintenance Squadron also
gets involved and uses the downtime
opportunity to catch-up on all the
"time change" items before the air-
craft actually are grounded, he said.
Before phase can get started, a
contract has to be signed to layout
the work requirements. This meet-
ing is called predock.


"During this time we docu-
ment the tail number, what
hourly postflight we are on,
the days the aircraft is sched-
ule in and out and we agree on
what is going to be done," said
Staff Sgt. Matthew Veit, 325th
MXS dock chief. "In addition,
we have a post dock document
that records what actually was
completed out of the predock
contract."
Up to three aircraft can be in
the dock at one time and they
can all be at different stages
of repair. Teams are assigned
to each one to follow through
with the jet's phase mainte-
nance whether it's a five or ten
week-day mission. Each per-
son on the team is assigned to
one of five sections of the jet;
forward, wing, hydraulics, aft
and engine. Avionics and elec-
trical system journeymen and
apprentices work all sections
while other personnel work in their
specific area of expertise.
On day one, maintainers prepare
the jet for safe maintenance and
check for needed parts. They mark


Above: Airman 1st Class
Mike Clifford, 325th MXS
structural maintenance
technician, gets ready
to crawl into an Eagle's
engine intake.
Right: Airman 1st Class
John Thore, 325th MXS
aircraft structural main-
tenance/sheet metal
journeyman, removes
nut plates.


FENA


Phasing operation





Gulf Defender Page 11


one jet at a time


Left: Senior Airman Parris Kawaauhau, 95th AMU crew
chief assistant, takes a panel off an F-15 wing. Above:
Staff Sgt. Joshua Bost, 325th MXS aerospace propulsion
craftsman, checks the throttle rigs on an F-15 engine.


panels to be removed and cover
openings with tape so nothing can
get inside. "Red streamers" are
placed to indicate safety conditions.
Leak tests are conducted. Hydrau-
lics and electronics are run.

Left: Senior Airman Sam Gebre-
selassie, 325th MXS tactical air-
craft maintenance journeyman,
plugs in the communication
connection during a hydraulic-
powered simulated engine run.
Below: Staff Sgt. Scott McElroy,
avionics technician, inspects
electrical connectors on the F-
15.


Structural components are ex-
amined on day two, ensuring there
are no cracks in the surface. Back
shops arrive to take out the ejection
seat for inspection.
Ordered parts are usually received
by day three, when maintainers
stop looking and start fixing. Days
spent making repairs depends on
which hourly postflight inspection
is scheduled, number one or number
two. Two is longer and conducted
every other 200 flying hour check.
A periodic inspection can take up to
eleven week days to complete.
"All these inspections have the
same basic stages but differ in the
amount of items checked and how
in-depth we look at certain items,"
said Sergeant Wagner. "What the
mechanics look for depends on
which inspection the aircraft is in
for. There are workcards for each in-
spection for the items to be checked.
We also have our own self-gener-
ated list of high-fail and/or critical
items. In addition to these two lists,
we also look the aircraft over for
any discrepancies possible as well
as foreign objects."
Before an aircraft can return to its
unit, the crew chief of that unit and
others make a final inspection and


Airman Ben Mockovciak, 325th MXS crew chief, checks the hydrau-
lic pumps on an F-15 during the first day of phase maintenance.


pass or fail the jet for flying opera-
tions.
"The pass rate is pretty high," said
Sergeant Veit, who coordinates and
monitors the workload of any jet
that sits in his section of the dock.
"Occasionally, about 30 percent of


the time, the aircraft doesn't go back
into flying. It goes for depot fix.
Regardless of the follow-on mainte-
nance, as long as the phase inspec-
tion is complete, the AMU assumes
responsibility so the phase dock can
start working the next airplane."


rURE






Page 12


Gulf Defender


OSI brief
Report suspicious activities to the
325th Security Forces Squadron at 283-
2254, or the Air Force Office of Special
Investigations at 283-3261.

AAFES electronics
The 2006 Exchange Electronics
Summer supplement is available at all
main stores and online at aafes.com,
usmc-mccs.org, navy-nex.com or cg-
exchange.com.
Prices in this all-services catalog are
valid through Oct. 16, for any autho-
rized exchange customer. Active duty
military members of the Army, Air
Force, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard,
as well as military retirees, reservists,
National Guardsmen, Department of
Defense civilians stationed overseas,
Exchange employees and their family
members are all authorized exchange
privileges.
Orders can be placed by mail, fax or
phone. Toll free orders can be placed
from the United States, Puerto Rico or
Guam at 800-527-2345.

Limited space at the marina
There is limited parking at the Beacon
Beach Marina due to pavement of the
parking area.
The public boat launch is closed;
however, the private boat launch will be
available for usage for all Tyndall pa-
tronage. The Marina Grill is open. The
estimated completion date of construc-
tion is July 28. For any further ques-
tions or concerns, please feel free to call
the marina at 283-3059.

Dining facility limitations
Due to limited space and increased
temporary duty commitments, the facil-
ity will be limited to meal-card holders,
on-duty security police (weapons carry-
ing), firemen, and temporary duty per-
sonnel during lunch meal until Aug. 1.
The Eagle Quick Turn (flight kitchen)
will be limited to personnel with flight
line badges for all meals until Aug. 1.

Base ropes course
The base ropes course offers a pro-
gram that promotes team cohesion,
strength and provides an opportunity for
self insight. Call the Tyndall Outdoor
Recreation, Bonita Bay program coor-
dinatorto schedule, at 283-3199.


School physical offered
School and sport physical are by
appointment only at Tyndall. Call
the appointment line 283-2778 to
schedule. If a child's medical record
does not reside at the Tyndall clinic,
the child must bring a copy to the ap-
pointment, or reschedule. Families
with records in transit due to PCS are
exempt from this rule and will receive
a review upon the record's arrival.
Any child who is new to Bay Coun-
ty schools needs a physical within 30
days of entry into school. Any child
who will be playing sports for the
Tyndall Youth Center, Bay County
Middle or High Schools needs a cur-
rent physical (past 12 months). In
both cases, the provider may be able
to sign the forms without a physical
exam if the parent can show proof
of a wellness visit or physical in the
past 12 months, and the child has no
change in their health status.

Base lawn watering schedule
The following is the lawn watering
schedule for military family housing.
Base Housing:
Redfish Point, Shoal Point, Bay


View, Wood Manor, and Felix Lake
- Odd-numbered buildings may run
sprinklers Tuesdays, Thursdays and
Saturday.
The even-numbered buildings may
run sprinklers Wednesdays, Fridays
and Sundays.
The times sprinklers may run from
6:30-8:30 a.m. if they are manual
systems and 6:30-8 p.m. if they are
automatic systems.
Other than base-housing
Odd-numbered buildings on Mon-
days, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Even-numbered buildings on Sun-
days, Tuesdays and Fridays.
Manual systems are allowed from
7-9 a.m. Automatic systems are al-
lowed from 8-10 p.m.
No more than 30 minutes per
zone.

New Thrift Shop hours
New hours are: Tuesdays and
Thursday only from 9:30 a.m. to
12:30 p.m. starting July 6. No con-
signments will be accepted unless
you are permanently changing sta-
tion in or out. For details or appoint-
ments, call 286-5888.


July 7, 2006


Catholic services
Daily Mass, 11:30 a.m.
Monday-Friday,
Chapel Two
Reconciliation, before Saturday
Mass or by appointment
Saturday Mass, 5 p.m.,
Chapel Two
Sunday Mass, 9:30 a.m.,
Chapel Two
Religious Education, 11 a.m.,
Bldg. 1476
Protestant services
Traditional worship service,
9:30 a.m., Chapel One
Contemporary worship
service, 11 a.m., Chapel Two
Wednesday Fellowship,
5 p.m., Chapel Two
(For more information on other
services in the local area, call the
Chaplain's office at 283-2925.)


Guuty GUNIw


'Water-mark'
Jack McFadden, Del-Jen civil engi-
neering plumber, uses a ground pen-
S--_ etrating radar that detects utility lines
.i "n the ground to find an existing gas
S.. ..: line in base housing and prepare for
S. ,. - a future water main. Base residents
were mailed housing surveys and are
.,-: .. encouraged to fill them out to keep im-
S.. provements happening in housing. For
-- "more information, or to obtain another
S. '. ". copy of the survey, call 283-8332.
Staff Sgt Stacey Haga








Tigers take awards in SEMAC tournament


The Tyndall Tigers men's varsity
basketball team recently put the
finishing touch on their 2005-2006
Southeastern Military Athletic Con-
ference season with their annual
end-of-season awards dinner. The
following awards were presented:
Leading Scorer: Elvin Walker,
21.6 points per game.
3-Point Field Goals Made: El-
vin Walker, with 75.
Free Throw Percent Leader:
Melvin Smith, with 73 percent.
-Assists Leader: Anthony Show-
ers, 5.3 Assists per game.
Leading Rebounder: Derrell
Thomas, 7.8 rebounds per game.
Steals Leader: Anthony Show-
ers, 2.5 steals per game.
Block Shots Leader: Marqus


Armour, 1.8 blocks per game.
6th Man of the Year:
Ryan Cun-
ningham.
Most
Improved Player: Marcelle Mos-
ley.
Newcomer of the Year: Jar-
ed Austin. 000
Offensive Player of C
the Year: Elvin Walker.
Defensive Play-
er of the Year:
Markus Manuel.
Most Valu-
able Player: El-
vin Walker.
The Tigers finished with a 24-11
overall record 69 percent winning
rate, and a 17-7 record, which is a 71


percent conference mark. The Ti-
gers took second place at the 2005
SEMAC Pre-Season
Tournament at
Robins AFB,
Ga.
Elvin
Walk-
e r
and Ty-
sen Pina
won the
AIl-Tournament
aaird during the
Co C champions
SENIA.C Regular
Sea son.
T h e Tigers also took
s e c o n d place during the
2006 SEMAC Post Season Tourney


at Robins AFB, Ga., during which
Marqus Armour, Elvin Walker, An-
thony Showers earned the All Tour-
nament award.
The conference awards were giv-
en to Elvin Walker as the Co-Most
Valuable Player; William Sharpe
as Co-Coach of the Year; and El-
vin Walker, Anthony Showers and
Melvin Smith as All-Conference
winners
Looking ahead to the 2006-2007
season, the SEMAC conference
promises to be as tough as ever -
anyone who feels that they possess
the skills to play at the varsity lev-
el is encouraged to compete for a
roster spot tryouts are tentatively
scheduled to begin Aug. 14.
(Courtesy of the Tyndall Tigers)


Air Force marathon


gearing up


Headquarters Air Education and
Training Command Services will
field two teams and four individu-
al runners in the Air Force Mara-
thon, Sept. 16, at Wright-Patter-
son AFB, Ohio. AETC bases are
requested to submit teams
in each of the following
categories: Men's Open
Relay, Women's Open
Relay and Individual.
An AETC Services selec-
tion board will choose the
base team
individual
in each
category to repre-
sent the Command.
Team members/individuals se-
lected to participate in the mara-
thon will attend in permissive TDY
status. AETC Services will reim-
burse travel lodging expenses,


provide a $5-a-day maintenance
allowance, warm-up suits, run-
ning shirts and the entry fee for
each team.
Nominations mustbe
submitted to the local
fitness center direc-
tor who will forward
their top teams
in each catego-
ry to AETC by
July 21. Accounting in-
structions will be sent to
the base-level fitness
center directors at a
later date. Detailed
information about the
event is located at:
http:/Iafinarathon.
wpafb.af.mil/.
For more informa-
tion, call Capt. Dena Vineyard, at
(210) 652-7622.


Softball Standings


American


SEADS
AMXS
AMXS 3
MSS
SFS
ACS
83 FWS
COMM
CONS
WEG
SVS
TEST


Won
12
10
8
7
7
5
5
4
4
1
1
0


Lost
0
2
4
5
5
7
7
8
8
10
10
0


MXS
CES
OSS
MDG
AFCES
SEADS
LRD
RHS
372 TRi
ACS 2


National
Won
11
10
9
8
A 7
2 5
4
3
S 2
0


Golf Standings


Team
CES
COMM 1
372 TRS
AFCESA
MXS 1
RHS
53 WEG
AF NOR 1
MOS 1
MDG
SFS


Points

47.5
45.5
42
39
39.5
36.5
35
33.5
33
32
32


''~l~k c fL)lLIf A-1rZ


Team

MSS
601 1
601 2
83 FWS
SVS
TEST
OSS
ACS
CONS
MXS
COMM 2


Lost
0
2
2
4
5
6
8
8
10
12


Points

31.5
26.5
25
22.5
20
18.5
15.5
15
13.5
5.5
3


July 7, 2006


Gulf Defender Page 13


-~r~C,
li9: i~
-e
C '
J I






Page 14 Gulf Defender


Engineers go beyond virtual reality to test weapons systems


Second Lt. Will Dalton, F-15 avionics engineer, operates the F-15C console while Maj.
Raul Parra watches.


STORY AND PHOTOS BY
CHRISSY CUTTITA
325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Some aircraft parts are able to fight in air-to-air
combat without ever having to take off a runway.
By assembling the avionics "guts" of fighter jets
into racks and consoles, engineers and technicians


can recreate flight and aerial threats in one facility.
That is what makes the 28th Test and Evaluation
Squadron/Detachment 2 Integrated Avionics Test
Facility here an Air Force inexpensive option to op-
erationally test the weapons systems of all varieties
of the F-15 and F-16 fighter jets, with the potential
to support a wide variety of other test users.

.... ,,, _


Airman First Class Allan Robillos, electronic warfare technician, ensures correct radio
frequency-signal connections on the electronic countermeasures attack suite. Techni-
cians must know where each RF-connection goes to recreate the desired signal for the
simulated targets and associated EW effects in support of the mission objectives.


"Our technicians and engineers perform the same
functions as the pilot and are very experienced in
flight testing," said Maj. Raul Parra, director of op-
erations. "They run the mission from the control
center the same as any fighter squadron would, in-
cluding a prebrief and a debrief."
Actual aircraft parts are used and tested in the
tower to get a better than simulated flight experi-
ence. Engineers call it "hardware in the loop"
testing. They test new software and hardware
or updates to existing systems that are already
deemed "healthy" in the Air Force inventory to
validate performance. Results are provided to the
rest of the Combined Air Force services.
The facility conducts test programs through
the execution of two operational modes, open-air
and ground-loop missions that utilize unique Air
Force fighter radars/avionics, air-to-air missiles,
electronic attack and electronic protection suites.
Radar target generators build the simulated target
aircraft interceptors. For ground-loop testing one
tower communicates to another to relay signals
for simulated flight testing.
For open-air testing the IATF tower can use its
radars to transmit and illuminate against airborne
interceptor targets created by aircraft in their area
of operations. Those aircraft can be enroute to
another location or can intentionally engage the
tower in a fly-by mission and test their capabili-
ties but they never have to land on Tyndall's run-
way to get test results.
For ground-loop testing, "the target generator
builds synthetic targets and feeds its signal into
the jamming system to simulate a target in the
range-of-interest; further analysis shows how
well the representative aircraft radars and avion-
ics fixed within the tower perform," said Andrew
Kay, 28th TES/Det. 2 technical director.
For the Flight Test Engineers at the operation
consoles the experience of flying jets goes beyond
operating the aircraft's guts, they often receive on
the job training flying with fighter squadrons at
Tyndall and at Eglin. This gives FTEs the op-
portunity to experience the warfighter's environ-
ment, the operational methods applied and the
language used by fighter pilots.
The detachment's operationally representative
aircraft systems integration, facilities and range
location make this sophisticated one-of-a-kind
test center a national asset located right here at
Tyndall.
"We support the CAF and I see our future more
as electronic warfare centric and operationally
joint in support of other services," said Major
Parra. "Pilots come in from around the world
and see how their systems are performing against
the tower and they get real-time feedback on the
weapon systems. This is unique because the only
time they'll see that performance is when they are
in a war/threat scenario."


July 7, 2006









Chief takes responsibility of tending to Tyndall's nature


CHRISSY CUTTITA
325th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Taking care of Mother
Earth has always been a
priority for Native-Ameri-
cans, so it is only natural
that a Chickasaw Indian
accepted the job to protect
and respect the land on
which Tyndall operates.
Wesley Westphal moved
from Patrick AFB in No-


member after serving 12 years
there and being hired here
as the 325th Civil Engineer
Squadron Chief of Natural
Resources. He welcomed
the opportunity to take on
the preservation of the land,
its history, and the species
that live on Tyndall's 29,000
acres.
"It's exciting here because
of the amount of area we have


Capt J Elaine Hunnicutt
Jack Mobley and Wes Westphal monitor a con-
trolled burn on Tyndall earlier this year.


*FROM BABY PAGE 5
Mrs. Post carried Austin while her
husband carried a portable crib and
their hurricane supplies. Mrs. Post
tripped with the toddler in her arms
and her water broke, triggering labor.
The Posts and the medical team had
decisions to make. There was no way
to evacuate Mrs. Post by air because
of the high winds. She could have
proceeded with a normal delivery, but
she had been advised to have a repeat
C-section. There are certain risks in-
volved with any surgical procedure,
even under optimal circumstances.
When Mrs. Post opted for the C-sec-
tion, a team of about 50 medics and
support people prepared the make-
shift delivery room in the intensive
care unit, performed the surgery and
ensured the health and safety of the
mother and child.
The ICU had windows where the
afternoon sun provided some illumi-
nation.
Equipment had to be pushed about
500 feet down the dark hallways from
the delivery room to the ICU. After
furniture and equipment were rear-
ranged, the floor was scrubbed and


and the diversity," he said.
"We are the most diverse in
Air Education and Training
Command because 43 threat-
ened or endangered species
live on base and it is up to us
to help them survive."
Mr. Westphal and his team
of professionals do what they
can to ensure whatever Tyn-
dall needs for the mission
doesn't have an adverse af-
fect on the land or its histori-
cal properties.
For example, land is cur-
rently being looked at for
construction at Silver Flag
but the state historical pres-
ervation center thinks it is
possible that land could be
the site of an 1,400-year
old American Indian burial
ground. An amateur arche-
ologist first found the site in
1902. Personnel at Natural
Resources have the respon-
sibility of going out into the
woods and finding the site lo-


the walls were cleaned with antiseptic
wipes to sanitize the area as much as
possible. Sheets were taped up over
the unit's windows to provide some
sense of privacy.
"I wasn't really scared about the
delivery. I was confident that these
people knew what they were doing,"
Mrs. Post said, "but I was in a lot of
pain, and I was ready for it to be over
with."
The tiny room was packed with
medics for the delivery, some hold-
ing industrial flashlights to provide as
much illumination as possible.
For the second time, Airman Post
couldn't be present for his child's
birth. When Austin was bor, he was
stationed in Korea. The make-shift
delivery room was too crowded this
time, so he waited down the hall with
Austin.
"Considering what we were going
through, the medical team was great,"
Mrs. Post said. "One lady was talking
to me, putting me at ease and telling
me everything that was going on."
The darkness, heat, humidity and
lack of ventilation presented challeng-
es during the delivery, but the medics


cation to ensure it is not the
same site as the one set to be
dug up for construction. Dif-
ferences in terrain led them to
some broken pottery so they
may have found the correct
location.
This project will continue
as well as the daily calls that
come in asking for assistance
on other issues. Mr. West-
phal deals with a variety of
inquiries on a daily basis,
such as wondering where to
walk a dog, where the bears
are hanging out, or what kind
of snakes can be found on
Tyndall. He fields calls from
families who want to come
on base and leave flowers at
their family's gravesite and
gets calls about osprey nests
that need to be moved from
the flightline area because of
the potential bird air strike
hazard it may cause.
Natural Resources also
stands-by in case there is a


did what they could to keep Mrs. Post
comfortable.
The 8-pound, 9-ounce baby girl ar-
rived at 3:30 p.m. Aug. 29. Not long
after the storm had passed, the Posts
and other medical patients were trans-
ported via a C-130 Hercules to Wil-
ford Hall Medical Center at Lackland
AFB, Texas, for follow-up care.
"We weren't allowed to return to
our home to see what the storm had
done or to get any of our things be-
fore we left," Mrs. Post said. "After
we were given the OK, we went to
Oregon to stay with our families until
things settled down."
The family's home in military fam-
ily housing was flooded by Katrina's
storm surge. They were able to sal-
vage their bedroom furniture and
some of their clothing that was up-
stairs, but everything on the first floor
was ruined.
"And we had moved a lot of things
downstairs so that I wouldn't have to
keep running up and down the stairs
late in my pregnancy," Mrs. Post
said.
The Post family moved into a va-
cant home that was not affected by


fire or gas threat to the
land or its species due to
operations, and schedules
prescribed bums to keep
the fire hazards down.
"We have to have in-
ventive thinking here," he
said. "Knowledge, experi-
ence and just being good
listeners helps us make the
best decision for the base.
There is never a problem
that is not an opportunity
to excel."
On top of that, Mr.
Wesphal says his team has
a desire to do whatever
needs to be done, and hav-
ing a wildlife biologist on
his staff also helps.
"As a Chickasaw Indian,
my heritage is to take care
of mother nature and our
ancestors," he said. "I get
satisfaction in what I do
here from that stand point
- protect, respect and pay
honor."


the hurricane and began to put their
lives back together. Their insurance
covered the depreciated value of their
possessions, not the replacement cost,
but proceeds from a lawsuit that had
been pending for several years finally
came through and enabled them to re-
place their household belongings.
The baby's unusual name, Sage
Madison, was chosen because Mrs.
Post "wanted something original that
wasn't hard to spell or pronounce. I let
Aaron pick Austin's name because he
was overseas when she was born."
Sage has her mom's dark hair and
her dad's eyes and chubby cheeks. In
spite of the stormy circumstances sur-
rounding her birth, she has a sweet,
sunny disposition.
"We wanted everyone to know that
with all of the horrible things that Ka-
trina did to Keesler, something really
good came out of it -- our daughter,"
Mrs. Post said. "She's a very happy,
healthy baby, and her sister loves
having a playmate. Trying to recover
what we lost has been hard work and
has kept us very busy, but we want
to thank everyone who's helped our
family."


July 7, 2006


Gulf Defender Page 15





Gulf Defender


July 7, 2006


Page 16





Gulf Defender Page 17


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L ----------------------------------------------------- J


Try our newest buffet specials!
at the Pizza Pub


lesdoy
* tacos
burritos
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salad
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For orly $5.95


min -an


r-^---------


I
I Ir
r7At.......
classified


Military classified ads are placed in the Gulf Defender on a space
available basis. Ads must be for a one-time sale of personal goods
and should include a complete description, 30 words or less, of
item being sold. Forms must be turned in by 2 p.m. Thursday for
publication in the following Friday's Gulf Defender. Completed
forms can be dropped off or mailed to the 325th Fighter Wing
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July 7, 2006


I









Making history: First Iraqis graduate AMMOC


JOHN INGLE AND
SENIOR AIRMAN JACQUE LICKTEIG
82nd Training Wing Public Affairs
SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE,
Texas (AETCNS) Images of suicide
bombers or improvised explosive de-
vices taking their toll on civilian and
military lives in Iraq has been daily
news for the past three years.
No one ever gets accustomed to see-
ing the videos or photos.
Two Iraqis here, however, vowed
to make a difference in the rebuilding
process of their home country by serv-
ing as officers in the fledgling democ-
racy's military. Their first step began
here June 7 when they completed the
Aircraft and Munitions Maintenance
Officers Course at the 360th Training
Squadron.
Their names and ranks are being
withheld for security reasons.
One Iraqi officer said one of the
things he noticed the most about his
stay in Texas was the number of chil-
dren playing and smiling.


"I
Iraqi people need help from you. (Our) children need help
to give them back their smile," he said. "When I saw chil-
dren play or laughing, it made me sad. We need (the United
States) to help us give safety and security."
ANONYMOUS
Iraqi officer


"Iraqi people need help from you.
(Our) children need help to give them
back their smile," he said. "When I
saw children play or laughing, it made
me sad. We need (the United States) to
help us give safety and security."
The officer said smiles and laughter
will return to the children when a safe
and secure Iraq is in place.
The officers began their training
here in October when they attended a
four-month language course. AMMOC
training began in March.
The two, along with two other in-
ternational and seven U.S. students,
learned the maintenance aspects of


aerospace ground equipment, plans
and scheduling, jet engine mishap in-
vestigation and AMMOC.
There is a distinct difference between
Iraqi maintenance officers and those in
the United States, they said. Iraqi of-
ficers are able to get in a hangar or on
a flightline alongside their technicians
and repair aircraft, they said, whereas
U.S. maintenance officers primarily
manage.
They were very appreciative of the
training, but even more so of the wel-
coming atmosphere instructors and
students alike showed. From overcom-
ing a language barrier to frequent invi-


stations to eat out, they said they didn't
feel like foreigners in a strange land.
Assistance from fellow students and
the International Military Student Of-
fice made their time here more than a
training experience.
"You are not our friends," they said,
"you are family."
A shroud of secrecy veiled the of-
ficers' voyage to train here. Their
whereabouts and purpose have been
kept from everyone except their wives
in order to protect them and their fami-
lies.
But, braving this dangerous situation
was well worth the new Iraq that is un-
der construction today.
One of the officers explained a friend
of his was in the Iraqi National Guard
and lost both legs due to combat action.
But, his friend told him as long as he
has two hands he will continue to fight
against the insurgency and terrorists.
That is the cause of Iraqis to con-
tinue the fight against those who don't
want peace and democracy.


Page 18 Gulf Defender


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