El Toro Rojo Dos a success

by Senior Airman Katherine Holt
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

ZARAGOZA, Spain ― More than 85 Airmen from the 86th Airlift Wing, the 435th Contingency Response Group, and five Soldiers from the 5th Quartermaster Company traveled here Sunday for El Toro Rojo Dos.

The two-week off-station training began Monday, and is scheduled to end Thursday. This is the first time in two years the two countries have participated in an OST together. “It has been nice flying with our C-130 sister squadron,” said Capt. Jesse Klaetsch, 37th AS pilot and mission commander for El Toro Rojo Dos. “We were able to get unique training flying with the legacy C-130 and it gave the Spanish air force the opportunity to fly with the J model. It gives us a broader picture and the opportunity to see the different techniques and procedures.”

“The best part of training like this is seeing how we work with our NATO partners and allies to see how we accomplish wartime objectives,” Klaestch said.
Two C-130J Super Hercules from Ramstein Air Base along with two Spanish C-130H Hercules dropped 290 members of the Spanish army Tuesday, and were scheduled to drop 300 more to a designated drop zone Thursday. “All of our drops so far have been successful,” said Klaetsch. “We worked well with the Spanish air force combat control team and the Spanish army. We were challenged with high winds, but our crews commenced the drop.”

Spanish counterparts shared the feeling of success.“This was an interesting experience,” said 1st Lt. Joaquin Enjuto, Spanish army pathfinder. “We have different procedures and it was quite good to learn from each other.”
After two complete days of training, the 37th AS along with the 312th AS dropped more than 350 U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Spanish personnel.

“We are excited to be here again,” said Maj. Mike Morales, 37th Airlift Squadron pilot and deployed commander for El Toro Rojo Dos. “The facilities are excellent and we will be able to get a lot of training done while strengthening our partnership with Spain.”

Combat-like operations continued through Thursday, with a crew swap today. The remaining week will consist of air operations.