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NEWS | June 8, 2017

Teamwork more important than ever during uncertain times

By Air Force Col. Jeanine McAnaney, vice commander 315th Airlift Wing


The week before Memorial Day I flew as part of a large formation exercise consisting of 21 C-17 Globemaster IIIs alongside our active-duty and Army partners.  I was reminded in a poignant way – times are uncertain and we could get “the call” at any moment.  Multiple hotspots exist in just about every corner of the globe and, over the past few years, we’ve been constantly called on to perform more with less.  Joint teamwork and exercises like this LFE are more relevant and more important than ever to help us all stay at the top of our games. 

During the exercise, we planned to drop over 1,000 82nd Airborne Division paratroopers, along with their heavy equipment.  This directly supported their mission to “strategically deploy, conduct a forcible entry parachute assault and secure key objectives for follow-on military operations.” I watched as professional Airmen in the 437th and 315th Airlift Wings launched and recovered all 21 aircraft, not once, not twice but three times that day.  Like anything in life, ‘no good plan survives first contact with the enemy.’ Despite the curveballs thrown at the formation, wind, weather, weight restrictions, I witnessed the tremendous teamwork from maintainers, operators and the Army as we came together to safely execute one of our most complex missions.

Our joint environment is critical because when we get “the call,’’ we know we are ready!  We know how to fight alongside each other.  Through our practices, rehearsals and teamwork, we can face any future challenges.  

This large formation exercise was awe inspiring. It demonstrated to me, at every level, I am part of the most professional Air Force in the world.  No one else does it like us, I’m proud to be surrounded by such an amazing military family here at Joint Base Charleston…America’s military elite!