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Air National Guard Wings Participate in Agile Rage Exercise

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Sean Madden,
  • 106th Rescue Wing/Public Affairs

SAVANNAH AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Ga. - Almost 200 members of the 106th Rescue Wing, New York Air National Guard, participated in the Agile Rage 2024 exercise at the Savannah Combat Readiness Training Center in Georgia Feb. 26 to March 8.

The goal of the exercise was to practice leading-edge combat in Air Operations Maritime Surface Warfare, Combat Search and Rescue, Agile Combat Employment and advanced ground operations tactics, techniques, and procedures.

“Agile Rage 24 is a nine-month venture, capturing vital training for three ANG Wings and eight squadrons, totaling near 750 personnel,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Garett Ruby, exercise director.

Operating locations spanned from F.S. Gabreski Air National Guard Base, New York, south to Savannah, east over the Atlantic Ocean, and further south to Avon Park, Florida.

“Our goal with Agile Rage is to prepare units for future overseas deployments and provide readiness and integration opportunities unable to be achieved with home station training,” Ruby explained.

Other participants were the 107th Fighter Squadron of the 127th Wing, Michigan ANG, with 10 A-10 Thunderbolt II attack aircraft; the 156th Contingency Response Wing, Puerto Rico ANG; the 236th Combat Communications Squadron from the 159th Fighter Wing, Louisiana ANG, and Air Force Special Warfare elements.

The 106th Rescue Wing maintenance, medical and operations groups participated in the exercise.

While the primary role of the 106 RQW was combat search and rescue, a simulated scenario calling for the rescue of two downed U.S. Air Force pilots, other specialized preparedness training was conducted around the core mission.

Anytime multiple Air Force specialties come together for a major exercise, it adds to the mission and capability, said U.S. Air Force Col. Shawn Fitzgerald, 106 RQW Wing commander.

Maintenance crews worked in three shifts for 24-hour operations, conducting critical maintenance and inspections on aircraft.

Medical personnel simulated trauma incident responses and treatment while also playing out medical scenarios like food-borne illness exercises.

Also simulated was a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and high-yield explosive threat requiring participants to wear protective gear.

There are two reasons events like this are important, one is to exercise the ability to accomplish the mission so the Wing is more combat effective, Fitzgerald said. The second reason is the necessity to improve how we execute these exercises, he added.

The exercise helps prepare for future ANG deployments.

“Essentially, with the Air National Guard, this is the new style of our deployments going forward, to embed with our active duty counterparts,” said U.S. Air Force Command Chief Master Sgt. Edward Rittberg, the senior enlisted leader of the 106 RQW. 

The 106th Rescue Wing, based at F.S. Gabreski Air National Guard Base in Westhampton Beach, New York, operates and maintains the HC-130J Combat King II search and rescue aircraft, and the HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopter. The 106 RQW is home to a special warfare squadron with pararescuemen, Tactical Air Control Party specialists and combat rescue officers, specializing in rescue and recovery, and deploys for domestic and overseas operations.