Local

December 5, 2013

355th SFS Airmen provide much needed protection down range

Tags:
Senior Airman Josh Slavin
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
(U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Josh Slavin)
Airmen from the 355th Security Forces Squadron pose for a picture after landing at Tucson International Airport, Nov. 9. The Airmen are returning from a six month deployment in Afghanistan

Security Forces Airmen play a critical role in supporting the mission at D-M and down range. They are responsible for the safety and security of personnel, aircraft, and cargo.

Recently a group of 355th Security Forces Squadron Airmen returned from a deployment to Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.

Most commonly defenders will provide ground security without having to venture to far from or leave their assigned base. However during their deployment to Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, D-M defenders worked as members of fly-away security teams, Reaper teams, and in the joint defense operations center while also providing watch from the towers.

Airmen who are members of FAST are required to fly to locations with limited security, to ensure the safety of the aircrew and aircraft from hostile fire. These Airmen are responsible for protecting a wide range of objects such as hazardous materials, personnel under control, medical units and mission-essential personnel.

The mission required the young team of Airmen to constantly provide cover while trusting that their teammates had each other’s back. With a majority of the team on their first FAST let alone their first deployment, team cohesion was vital.

“I would say the thing I was most proud of was the way our team was able to come together and remain undivided when there were plenty of opportunities for that to not be the case, “ Staff Sgt. Curtis Stackpole, 355th SFS defender. This was Stackpole’s first time as a FAST leader during his second deployment to Afghanistan.

Another responsibility of the D-M Airmen was to work on Reaper teams. The objective of these teams is to venture into the local community to seek out threats, respond to attacks or escort base leaders to visits with local officials.

“Our specific role was to patrol and monitor the near battle area,” said Airman1st Class Jonathan Boone, 355th SFS defender. “If anything were to happen within [1,000 – 1,500 meters] we were the ones to handle it instead of having to tie up the units that were way out in the field.”

Boone and his teammates were faced with unique challenges.

“The language barrier with the local populous was a big thing for us,” Boone said. “We had translators but even that got to the point where it was difficult to understand with the thick accents and different dialects. It was an unfamiliar environment and we went from a place that we could pretty much tell something bad was about to happen to a place where we had no idea where the threats would come from.”

Many defenders also provided security to the base from the JDOC and watch towers surrounding the base.

The JDOC is the command and control center for the air base. It contains monitoring and communication equipment and collaborates and coordinates all inside and outside base defense assets. Airmen that work outside the wire rely heavily on the JDOC for intelligence and




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


 
 

 
Courtesy photo

Extraordinary effort regardless of outcome

DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Imagine a 5-year-old boy chasing grasshoppers at a camp site. He wanders too far. Darkness falls, and he is lost. A storm is brewing in the sky above, and the camping party turns into...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Drzazgowski

D-M conducts Meet and Greet at local high school

TUCSON, Ariz. — A community event was held at Rincon High School Wednesday. The Meet and Greet event allowed members of the Tucson community to interact with their neighboring Airmen and learn about the mission of Davis...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo/Mike Kaplan

Tuskegee Airman takes final flight at Academy

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. (AFNS) — (This feature is part of the “Through Airmen’s Eyes” series. These stories focus on individual Airmen, highlighting their Air Force story.) Franklin Macon’s f...
 

 
DoD
Courtesy photo by Tim Brumbeloe

‘I Will Wait’ Tells Stories of Generations of Military Spouses

WASHINGTON — America sends its sons and daughters to war, and a new play titled “I Will Wait” looks at the effect of these deployments across the generations. The brainchild of Amy Uptgraft, the play connects the experien...
 
 
U.S. Air Force graphic/ Tech. Sgt. Ryan Crane

F-22 inaugural deployment to Europe

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany  — Four F-22 Raptors, one C-17 Globemaster III, and approximately 60 Airmen arrived at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, to train with allied air forces and U.S. services through mid-Septembe...
 
 
CAP_pict

Civil Air Patrol joins total force ‘Airmen’

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — When conducting missions for the Air Force as the official Air Force auxiliary, the Civil Air Patrol is now included in the Air Force’s definition of the total force. CAP has provided 74 years of sup...
 




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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>