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    Fuels expand knowledge and airpower at Northern Strike 19

    Northern Strike 19

    Photo By Airman 1st Class Wynndermere Shaw | U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Clyde D. Laws III, a fuels distribution supervisor assigned...... read more read more



    Story by Airman Wynndermere Shaw 

    182nd Airlift Wing

    Achieving to sustain proficiency in conducting mission command, air, sea, and ground maneuver integration, Northern Strike is one of the biggest Reserve and Guard training exercises that brings wide ranges of aircraft included from different branches of the military. With this large amount of air power, there is a demand for more fuel power.

    Air Force Tech. Sgt. Jonathan J. Park, a petroleum, oil and lubricant specialist, assigned to the 122nd Fighter Wing, Indiana Air National Guard, says that Northern Strike raises the average fuel needs by approximately 90 percent, and that POL is ready to take on the challenge and experience.

    It’s in bigger training environments like these where people troops from inside and outside the career field really see the importance POL has in the mission, said Park.

    “The mission isn’t going to happen if the birds can’t get off the ground,” said Park. “You can have bombs loaded on a plane, but if there’s no gas they’re not going to be able to use them.”

    Northern Strike delivers a unique training opportunity that allows these Airmen to be proficient with equipment and aircraft that aren’t available at their home unit.

    “The training environment here is really good because Airman who have never touched any aircraft other then what is at their home station are excited to work on everything newly available to them,” said Park.

    Park said that despite his past nine temporary deployments, Northern Strike offers aircraft that he’s never seen or had the opportunity to work on previously. The learning capacity for these Airmen is endless.

    Senior Airman Brian C. Degroff, a fuels distribution system worker at the 122nd FW who is being trained by Park, said he’s using Northern Strike to his best advantage before he deploys next year.

    “I’m excited,” said Degroff. “I get to learn about all the different areas of my job. We work in a real time environment and fuel numerous kinds of aircraft. And what better place for me to learn then in a training environment like this.”

    Tech. Sgt. Jared C. Bicker, the NCO in charge of the fuels lab for the Alpena CRTC, said that each year Northern Strike grows as a training exercise to better developments and opportunities for POL to change the game.

    “Every year gets bigger and every year gets more complex, and it’s crazy to see how much knowledge you can learn in two weeks,” said Bicker.

    Never will POL be lenient, because at the end of the day this is the training and new awareness that makes them more up to date and proficient, said Parker.



    Date Taken: 08.04.2019
    Date Posted: 08.04.2019 08:52
    Story ID: 334462
    Location: ALPENA, MI, US 
    Hometown: FORT WAYNE, IN, US

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