Air Force

August 8, 2013

Critically Manned: Loadmaster, flexibility is key to success

Airman 1st Class Josh Slavin
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
(U.S. Air Force photo by Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Josh Slavin)
Tech. Sgt. Joel Bonnet, 79th Rescue Squadron loadmaster, straps down cargo during the pre-flight operations here July 112. The 79th RQS is one of three rescue squadrons stationed on D-M.

Loadmasters play a critical role in the Air Force’s mission to transport supplies and military personnel to various points around the world. However, D-M’s loadmasters have a unique mission that requires their skill to perform rescue missions, as well as moving cargo and personnel.

A loadmaster’s job consists of an array of different tasks, from accomplishing loading and off-loading aircraft to computing weight and balance for cargo. They also play a role in the mission once the aircraft is airborne. They monitor cargo and passengers, provide assistance to passengers as required, and demonstrate the use of emergency equipment such as oxygen masks and life vests.

Master Sgt. Michael Boyles, 563rd Rescue Group loadmaster, believes the job is very tough and demanding but is extremely rewarding at the same time. “My favorite thing about being a loadmaster and working in the 563rd RQG is knowing that I was part of saving someone’s life,” Boyles said. “That is the most rewarding thing. These things we do, that others may live.”

The 79th Rescue Squadron here currently has approximately 30 loadmasters manning authorizations. Due to lack of manning in the career field however, they are only able to fill roughly half of the positions. This includes the 79th RQS Airmen that are currently deployed.

Boyles thinks flexibility is key and that it takes a special type of Airman to handle the job. “We undermanned because it is difficult to keep Airmen in the career field due to the unstable work schedule and constant traveling,” Boyles said. “It is tough on the guys with families, and some of them prefer a set schedule”.

Being part of the 563rd RQG presents D-M’s loadmasters with a unique mission. The 563rd RQG specializes in combat search and rescue missions. This puts a higher emphasis on transporting special forces troops and injured military personnel.

The primary duties for an HC-130J Combat King II loadmaster include assisting in the recovery of distressed or isolated personnel, use night vision goggles for tactical flight profiles to avoid detection and accomplish covert infiltration and exfiltration operations and to transload patients in and out of unimproved, low illuminated, short airfields.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Tuition assistance program changes Oct. 1

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Effective Oct. 1, new changes will go into effect that impact the Air Force Tuition Assistance Program. Personnel using the TA program will now be required to pass all undergraduate courses with a grade of “C” or higher. A grade of “D” will be considered a failing grade and...
 
 

Air Force revamps AEF

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — The Air Force will deploy Agile Combat Support Airmen under its redesigned air expeditionary force construct October 1. The primary purpose of the redesign was to look at ways to deploy more ACS Airmen with their units and standardize dwell times across the Air Force as much as possible to present a...
 
 

Air Force reveals newest recruiting campaign

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas  — The U.S. Air Force is bringing back its “Aim High” advertising slogan after a 15-year hiatus with the launch of the “I am an American Airman” recruiting campaign today. The integrated campaign, created by the Air Force’s advertising agency, GSD&M, includes three commercial spots as well as new video...
 

 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Mike Kaplan)

AF Academy ranks high in Best Colleges Ranking report

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (AFNS) — The U.S. Air Force Academy ranks high among the nation’s top universities in engineering and liberal arts courses, according to the 2015 Best Colleges Ranking report released Sept....
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Justin Brockhoff)

Sovereign Skies: AFSOUTH partnership brings illicit air drug trafficking to a halt

(U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Justin Brockhoff) A Dominican Republic air force pilot and maintenance airman inspect an A-29 Super Tucano for a nighttime flight as part of an exercise to detect and track illegal drug traffic. T...
 
 

Smoke testing for selected sewers begins

Davis-Monthan Air Force Base has contracted with URS Group to perform physical inspection and smoke testing of base sewers and manholes. On September 8 sewer smoke testing will begin in all areas of the base except for military family housing. Testing is expected to last from September 8 through Oct. 31. Smoke testing is conducted...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin