Airmen prepare for deployment in phase 1 exercise

  • Published
  • By SrA Jeremy L. Mosier
  • 366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
The 366th Fighter Wing tested its ability to prepare for a deployment in a moment’s notice this week with its first Phase 1 exercise in almost three years.

“We are hoping to ensure we can generate aircraft and personnel that would be required to go to an (area of military operations),” explained Maj. Jennifer Cannon, 366th FW director of inspections. “As well as to ensure that personnel know how to deploy and get their equipment ready and themselves ready, so they are medically, physically, mentally and emotionally prepared to go.”

During the Phase 1 exercise the base not only focused on getting Airmen out the door to a deployed location, but tested its force-protection capabilities and information security.

“This exercise is different in the fact that it proves that we can deploy our forces to go to an arena that the president calls us to go to,” Cannon said. “Other exercises we do are more like part-task trainers, we are making sure we can increase our (force protection condition) and making sure everybody knows the checklists to do for that.”

Exercises, like a Phase 1, keep Airmen ready for any short-notice deployments and allow units to assess and improve their procedures.

“Training is a very important part of being an Airman,” said Col. Joseph Kunkel, 366th Fighter Wing commander. “The Air Force never puts an Airman into a position they’re not ready for, because we are well trained and will continue to be well trained.”

From finance to maintenance, it took the entire base to ready members for the deployment exercise.

"Everyone pulled together and worked hard to accomplish the mission,” said Master Sgt. James Mulhall, 366th FW exercise planner. “There were lessons learned but that's what exercises are all about; to find areas for improvement and be able to execute our mission at a moment's notice."