The 435th Contingency Response Squadron and 37th Airlift Squadron tested their port, maintenance and command and control functions during the first-ever, Exercise Agile Wolf at Ramstein Air Base, Dec. 17-18.
The exercise was designed to enhance the 435th CRS’s ability to coordinate and operate mobility operations with the 37th AS in a semi-permissive environment. Since the only thing that separates the two squadrons is Ramstein’s flight line, the 435th CRS went to the other side and they both got to work.
The 435th CRS command and control function paired with the air terminal operations center kicked off operations on the ramp. Nearly a third of the 435th CRS worked seamlessly with the 37th AS for two 16-hour days. Maintainers prepared four C-130J Super Hercules aircraft while aircrew worked with mobile aerial porters to load small cargo pallets for airdrops and combat offloads.
“We are in a resource-constrained Air Force and we’re always trying to do more with less,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Brad Seehawer, 435th CRS assistant operations officer. “We are doing this exercise to show that we can train our members without having to fly them across the continent or back to the United States.”
To maximize training opportunity and current operations, Airmen rotated from the squadrons to the exercise location. The rotation allowed Airmen from the two squadrons to get familiar with each other since they would be working together in a deployed location.
“This is the first time we’ve done exercises on Ramstein with the 37th Airlift Squadron,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt Deven Kauppi, 435th Contingency Response Squadron mobile aerial porter. “We usually go out with them to various countries like Romania, Poland or Bulgaria to conduct training.”
The exercise saved the Air Force thousands of dollars because it was on their home installation. The location reduced additional flight hours and personnel travel required to conduct an extensive training like Agile Wolf.
“Working alongside our partner nations is extremely important, so there’s incredible value in honing our skills in our backyard first, to add even more value to our effectiveness in the European area of operation,” Seehawer said.
Exercise Agile Wolf is planned to occur every quarter to further strengthen the 435th and 37th missions; to provide the region’s only airlift, airdrop, and aeromedical evacuation operations capability and provide professional airlift to any country, any time.