News: Bagram survival equipment duo keeps A-10 pilots safe
by Staff Sgt. Marcus McDonald
455th Air Expeditionary Wing
11/1/2005 - BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan (AFPN) -- From an initial review to final inspection, a survival equipment duo here is helping keep A-10 Thunderbolt II pilots safe and secure as they fly close-air support missions as part of the global war on terrorism.
Whether assembling an antiG-suit, parachute or survival vest, Staff Sgt. Andrew Topor and Senior Airman Adam Hatch, both deployed from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., are known for weaving together excellence.
"If we've done our job correctly, A-10 aircrews can step into the cockpit, conduct their mission and return home safely," said Sergeant Topor, a survival equipment supervisor/rigger, with the 455th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron.
"We don't get to see if the maintenance we do on the equipment works out or not, and if we do, that means something went wrong," said Sergeant Topor, a native of Columbus, Ga. "But if something were to happen, knowing that they made it to the ground safely because of the work we do gives us a sense of accomplishment â?¦ that we saved a life."
Airman Hatch, a survival equipment technician/rigger, said he enjoys doing what he's paid to do and is glad to serve his country during a time of war.
"This job, like any other, is truly what you make of it," said Airman Hatch, a native of Woodsville, N.H. "It's extremely rewarding to know we are a vital part of making a successful mission happen.
"Regardless of how difficult it is at times, it is an honor and a privilege to serve and do my small part to complete the mission and return home safely," said Airman Hatch. "This is an experience to be proud of and one I will certainly carry with me always."