366th FW Marquee sortie message: What does it mean?
By Airman 1st Class JaNae Capuno, 366th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
/ Published March 15, 2019
MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho -- People who don’t work directly with the F-15E Strike Eagle fighter squadrons here might not know what the numbers next to each fighter squadron on the marquee, near the main gate, represent.
However, it’s crucial that everyone in the wing understands the importance of these monthly goals, because it’s every Airman’s job to play a part in completing fighter squadron sorties.
“Everyone in the 366 Fighter Wing is a key contributor to sortie generation - the ability to launch, employ, recover, and rapidly fix F-15E and F-15SG aircraft,” said Col. Kurt Helphinstine, 366th Fighter Wing deputy commander of operations. “Our base generates sorties because we remain laser focused on our mission. Defenders are ceaseless in their vigilance, our medics are passionate about keeping us in the fight, supply and petroleum, oil and lubricant (POL) provide the parts and fuel required for our base to operate, and our maintainers selflessly fix jets all hours of everyday regardless if it is 10 degrees and snowing or 110 degrees and sunny.”
The marquee message is designed to let the base populace know how many sorties each fighter squadron has to complete to reach their monthly goal.
In order to understand the information on the marquee slide, one must first know what a sortie is.
A sortie is a french word for “military mission.” It is defined as an operation carried out by a deployed unit, which can be an aircraft, ships or a group of people.
For example, if the board reads “389 FS - BEHIND 55 SRT,” it means that the 389th Fighter Squadron has to complete 55 sorties to reach their goal.
“The sortie board at the front gate provides us a metric to gauge how well the base is generating sorties,” Helphinstine said. “When we meet our monthly sortie goal we can be confident that our lethality is increasing. If we miss the goal we will discover why, take proper action, and re-attack next month.”
Every career affects the ability to get jets in the sky. Without every single Airman dedicating their specific skill set to countless hours on duty doing what they do best, the flying mission would never take off.
“Completing a flying mission is no small task,” said Senior Airman Joseph Levin, 389th Fighter Squadron crew chief. “It takes every member on base to push for the best performance down to the unit. Even if you don’t work on the flightline, your job performance and support is pivotal to mission success.”