Fueling the flight: VMGR-252 fuels Ospreys on cross country mission

II Marine Expeditionary Force
Story by Cpl. Samuel A. Nasso

Date: 07.12.2011
Posted: 07.22.2011 12:05
News ID: 74139
Fueling the flight: VMGR-252 fuels Ospreys on cross country mission

MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. - Like a swarm of well-trained bees, a formation of KC-130J Hercules and MV-22B Ospreys flew across the country on a long-distance aerial refueling training exercise July 12.<br /> <br /> Two 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing KC-130Js with Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 252 based at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point teamed up with four 3rd MAW KC-130s and several Ospreys from Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 365 based out of MCAS New River in a multi-unit exercise.<br /> <br /> “We facilitated the training in a joint exercise with VMM-365 by providing aerial refueling support on a transcontinental movement from MCAS New River to Twentynine Palms, [Calif.]” said Lance Cpl. Michael A. Reischman II, a loadmaster with VMGR-252.<br /> <br /> Aerial refueling allows aircraft that normally couldn’t travel long distances to travel an extended distance to enhance overall mission capabilities.<br /> <br /> The four other KC-130Js belonged to 3rd MAW’s VMGR-352 out of MCAS Miramar, Calif., and 4th MAW’s VMGR-234 out of Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Forth Worth, TX.<br /> <br /> Alongside each KC-130 was an Osprey flying on the nearly seven-hour flight to California. Whenever the Osprey needed more fuel, the KC-130s descended their refueling tubes to attach to the Osprey, and without a moment’s delay, the Ospreys were back in action with full tanks.<br /> <br /> Constant communication between each aircraft is vital during these missions, and dealing with different squadrons of Marines that don’t know each other adds difficulty.<br /> <br /> Reischman explained the significance of working with other units is that it shows how different units can come together and accomplish the mission at hand.<br /> <br /> “I believe the exercise went very well ... the planning paid off greatly,” added Capt. Nicholas L. Arhur, a KC-130 naval aviator with VMGR-252.<br /> <br /> After the cross-country escort, the VMGR squadrons continued to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tuscon, Ariz., to stop for the night. The following day the various squadrons returned to their parent units.<br /> <br /> The multi-unit, multi-platform movement demonstrated how the Marine Corps adapts and overcomes any situation, said Reischman. “Using the services of one of the U.S. military’s oldest currently operating platforms, the C-130, with the enhanced capabilities of the ground-breaking MV-22 Osprey, our Marines have once again showed that they are up to any task.”