Tiger Airmen celebrate maintenance support section grand opening

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Col. Scott, 432nd Maintenance Group Commander, cuts the ribbon at the Tiger Aircraft Maintenance Unit at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., July 29, 2019. Prior to this grand opening, all Airmen were tasked with getting their tools from the Reaper Aircraft Maintenance Unit. (Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)

Airmen from the 432nd Maintenance Group celebrated the opening of a revitalized Tiger Aircraft Maintenance Unit support section, July 29, 2019.

A support section’s purpose is to check tools in and out for the Airmen working on U.S. Air Force assets. From 2007 to 2018, the 432nd MXG had two sections for equipment management, one for the MQ-1 Predator and one for the MQ-9 Reaper.

However, the MQ-1 was removed from the Air Force’s inventory in March of 2018, the Tiger support section was closed the following October, causing the Reaper support section to house tools and offer support to all maintenance Airmen, before the opening of the new Tiger support section.

Since working with the Reaper support section, the Tiger support section has found ways to streamline processes in their work station. Months of reorganization and inspection of new equipment to support the MQ-9 Reaper have built up to the grand opening of their tool shop.

Senior Airmen Tyler and Jordan, 432nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron support technicians, review a checklist at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., July 29, 2019. Creech maintenance Airmen are trained to ensure tools are serviced and ready for use to complete the mission. (Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)

With the help of the Tiger section, maintenance Airmen can now service twice as many customers with the changes made to their section.

“The Airmen that work in this hangar no longer have to go next door so it gives them back an entire section to work in,” said Col. Scott, 432nd MXG commander.

With the Tiger support section now open, the mission can be carried out more efficiently and effectively.

“Airmen went beyond their typical job functions,” said Master Sgt. Corey, Tiger support section flight chief. “What would typically be a job for civil engineering, like repainting all the walls and refurbishing the floors, the Airmen did themselves.”

Senior Airman Tyler, 432nd Maintenance Squadron support technician, moves a rolling shelf at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., July 29, 2019. The Tiger Aircraft Maintenance Unit installed rolling shelves to allow quicker access to more tools. (Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class William Rio Rosado)

Rolling shelves were just one of many improvements ordered and installed to support equipment for the MQ-9.

“The guys out on the line can’t really do what they’re doing without us,” said Senior Airman Tyler, 432nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron Tiger AMU support technician. “They need us to have the equipment serviceable and prepared in a timely manner, so they can carry out their mission.”

The Reaper section was often congested and it made a significant difference in workplace morale, Corey explained. It’s why Tiger Airmen are eager to utilize their new section.

“It’s a work center I’d want to work in,” said Scott. “That’s all we can do for our Airmen really, to give them quality tools and equipment, and a great place to work, and I think that’s what these guys have built.”