Ramstein opens Gallien Hall, AF’s newest teleport site

1st Lt. Matthew Bannantine
435th Communications Squadron

***image1***In November 2003, the site where Gallien Hall now stands was nothing more than a bare field at Ramstein.
Over the past seven months through a concerted effort among experts from Headquarters, U.S. Air Forces Europe, the 435th Civil Engineer Group, Defense Information Systems Agency-Europe, Electronics Systems Center, Air Force Space Command, U.S. Central Command, U.S. European Command and other organizations, Gallien Hall is now home to 11 tactical communication missions directly supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
“The new facility’s importance to the Satellite Communications community has proven immeasurable,” said Tech. Sgt. Gary Abbott, NCO in Charge of Standardized Tactical Entry Point operations, 435th Communications Squadron.
Gallien Hall was stood up just in time to take over all the mission traffic from USAFE’s primary Defense Satellite Communication System site, as it closed for major repairs.
Previously, the facility was solely responsible for providing communication services that led to the successful execution of more than 17,600 combat sorties and one-third of all the reach-back communication services for Operation Freedom. Those responsibilities have now been passed to Gallien Hall.
“In order to get Gallien Hall to its current level of operational readiness, we accomplished a number of milestones,” said Senior Master Sgt. Jeffrey Williams, superintendent of transmission systems for the 435th CS.
To accomplish the task, 23 racks of communication equipment were uninstalled by an Information Systems Engineering Command team from the Defense Satellite Communication System site and reinstalled in Gallien Hall.
Then, more than 450,000 feet of copper and fiber optic cable were installed, virtually connecting three of USAFE’s primary long-haul transmission system facilities.
With that accomplished, the entire USAFE HQ’s command and control mission was then alternately routed to another secure site and as a result when the site came back on-line, USAFE’s command and control mission would have a diverse and redundant path.
A rare event then took place in the satellite communications world as a tactical satellite dish was deployed to a fixed site. This was a necessary event as Ramstein’s primary military satellite dish is scheduled to go down for a complete modification to run in concurrence with the site upgrade. Next, the entire $800,000 SATCOM forward supply point was moved so that contractors could begin the much-needed $2.5 million renovation to the site.
Finally, to mitigate risk of losing reach-back services, 11 tactical communication missions were coordinated, cutover and are now successfully running out of Gallien Hall.
On May 24, Col. Vincent Valdespino, the 435th Communications Group commander, officially reopened Gallien Hall. Col. Michael Flynn, commander of DISA-EUR, Col. Steven Spano, director of Communications and Information, USAFE and Col. Frederick Cross, chief of Operations Interoperability Division (EUCOM), assisted in cutting the ceremonial ribbon for the Air Force’s newest Teleport facility.
Bringing up Gallien Hall was a concerted effort involving countless organizations and all the branches of the military service. However, there is no doubt that this new facility which directly supports America’s Global War on Terrorism and our deployed warfighters, would not have been stood up without the outstanding effort put forth by the professionals that make up Team Ramstein.