Airmen attend 1-week pre-deployment training event trial

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Denise Mommens

LINCOLN AIR FORCE BASE, Neb. -Airmen from the 155th Air Refueling Wing completed mandatory pre-deployment training, May 15-22, 2022, at the Nebraska National Guard Greenlief Training Site in Hastings and the Lincoln Air base.

During the week of training, approximately 150 members traveled to Greenlief firing range near Hastings, and back to Lincoln Air base to focus on readiness requirements needed for their upcoming deployment as a test run for a new way of conducting trainings more efficiently.

”We thought it would be the best thing to do pre-deployment operations, get everything scheduled, make it a multi-day event and do it in conjunction with drill weekend so some of our drill status guardsman that were already here could attend,” said 2nd Lt. Christopher Ricardo, 155th Logistics Readiness Squadron installation deployment officer.

As the Installation Deployment Officer, Ricardo oversees and implements plans for the wing commander’s deployment program and was one of the two officers instrumental in planning the readiness event.

The classes scheduled consisted of weapons qualification, Chemical Biological Radiological Nuclear Explosive training, medical, legal and family readiness briefings.

“This was basically a test run,” said Ricardo. “It was an easy first attempt to see what it looked like and work out any potential issues that could come into play.”

Ricardo discussed past traditions of trainings conducted being redundant, of an Airmen or two stopping by the different sections for briefings which were then repeated multiple times over the course of six drill weekends. He then compared it to one large scale week-long event.

Ricardo stated this was the first time the base has participated in a training event of this sort and estimated over 900 man hours saved on conducting the training this manner and $27,000 saved by scheduling into a one-week event.

The largest portion of the training is the weapons qualification which is classroom instruction, live-fire and weapon qualification, a total of 12 hours of training needed for each member.

Lt. Col. Greg Goodwater, 155th Security Forces squadron commander, the second officer involved in the event planning, supervises the weapons training and has the largest number of instructors and support personnel needed to conduct the training.

“We were able to coordinate one of the largest requirements which is weapons qualifications, along with some of the other requirements, to get done in a short period of time, meet all the requirements and the most efficiently,” Goodwater said.

Goodwater stated that scheduling out the various readiness requirements in one large event would free up time for other job-skills training in each member’s sections in the squadrons during the remainder of the drill weekends.

Ricardo and Goodwater are already planning future readiness training events adding additional functions such as air field operations into the training.