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Puerto Rico Air Guard, 52nd Fighter Wing Train Together

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Rafael Rosa,
  • 156th Wing

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, Germany - U.S. Airmen assigned to the 156th Logistics Readiness Squadron and the 156th Wing Staff, Puerto Rico Air National Guard, integrated with the 52nd Fighter Wing as a force multiplier in support of the Saber Knight Readiness Exercise 24-01 and Astral Knight 24.

Through coordination and logistics, an Air National Guard unit and an active duty unit from different parts of the hemisphere trained together during the large-scale exercises at Spangdahlem Air Base April 29 to May 13.

“Working with the 52nd Fighter Wing has been an amazing experience,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Eduardo Gonzalez, the 156th Wing installation deployment officer. “During the trip, we’ve come together as a team, and it has served to learn, benchmark and adapt each other’s tactics, techniques and procedures.“

Airmen with the 156th LRS supported the flight service center, risk kit assembly, central storage operations, cargo preparation and ground transportation training and certification. The 156th Wing command post integrated in all facets of local C2 operations.

The 52nd Fighter Wing defended the base, recovered from simulated attacks and rapidly generated F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft sorties.

Astral Knight 24 is a multinational military exercise focused on exercising Integrated Air and Missile Defense and the incremental development of theater-wide security and capabilities.

“Since both exercise objectives are driven by different factors such as readiness, base defense, rapid movement of assets, Integrated Air and Missile Defense, being here gives our LRS Airmen the opportunity to train in a fast-pace environment where they gain proficiency in preparing cargo to head out the door and execute the mission,” said U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. George Sanchez, the 156th LRS senior enlisted leader.

U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Angel Cardona, the 156th LRS quality assurance superintendent, said the exercises gave PRANG Airmen a sense of their roles in a deployment.

“About 65% of our PRANG Airmen participating or supporting these exercises are new members, so being here allows them to upgrade their training level while experiencing a deployment-type scenario for the first time,“ said Cardona.