News: Expeditionary maintenance group closes doors after 12 years
Story by Staff Sgt. Travis Edwards
TRANSIT CENTER AT MANAS, Kyrgyzstan - The 376th Expeditionary Maintenance Group was inactivated during a ceremony here March 29, 2014.
“What an amazing end to 12 and half years of launching missions,” said Col. John C. Millard, 376th Air Expeditionary Wing commander. “Our maintainers have led the way to ensure every launch was successful and every recovery was just as quick.”
Millard explained that the operations effectiveness rate, the percentage of successful sorties in Afghanistan, was at 99.8 percent because of the hard working maintainers.
“You did this with no hangars, in the blistering summers, [and cold] winters, [and] you never failed,” said Millard. “Thank you for being incredible Airmen and for making the Transit Center the premier logistics hub; not just in the [U.S. Air Force Central Command area of responsibility], but in the United States Air Force.”
When active, The 376th EMXG was responsible for the maintenance of KC-135 Stratotankers and aided in the maintenance of Air Mobility Command’s C-17 Globemaster IIIs, which passed cargo and personnel through Afghanistan. More than 5.3 million U.S., coalition and allied service members and 500 million pounds of cargo have touched Transit Center soil.
Another highlight from the past year was the 10-week period of zero maintenance delays.
“You put 60-year-old iron out there on the line ready to launch for our flyers,” said Millard. “You made sure they could get the mission done.”
Col. Stanley Springer, 376th EMXG commander, said he was equally as impressed with the dedication of the leadership and maintainers who help keep the mission going.
“We were seamless, we worked hard... when you look back on this past year, we helped launch thousands of sorties,” said Springer. “Sometimes, we had three missions often all going out at once and you all made it work amazingly.”
After 12 years of making repairs, keeping aircraft in the air and allied troops in the fight; the group now lays dormant until needed again.