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LRAFB holds Total Force Integration skills competition

Man in Turkey suit marshals out a C-130J

Airman 1st Class Hajjii Frederick, 19th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, marshals out the 61st Airlift Squadron’s C-130J Super Hercules dressed as a turkey at the beginning of the Turkey Shoot skills completion at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas Nov. 12, 2020. Participants promoted Total Force esprit de corps, while showcasing numerous Agile Combat Airlift skills such as combat landings, airdrops, combat offloads and numerous maintenance operations. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jeremy McGuffin)

two men measure palate from center of drop point on ground

Maj. Jonathan Avera, 314th Airlift Wing tactics officer, measures the distance for the combat offload portion of the skills competition at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas Nov. 12, 2020. The 19th, 314th and 189th AWs and 913th Airlift Group competed against each other showcasing numerous Agile Combat Airlift skills such as combat landings, airdrop and combat offloads. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jeremy McGuffin)

-C-130J lands on makeshift runway

A C-130J Super Hercules assigned to the 19th Airlift Wing takes off from the All American landing zone at Camp Robinson, Arkansas, Nov. 12, 2020. The 19th, 314th and 189th AWs and 913th Airlift Group competed during a Turkey Shoot competition showcasing numerous Agile Combat Airlift skills such as combat landings, airdrop and combat offloads. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kristine M. Gruwell)

Plane flying over lake dropping small package

A C-130H assigned to the 189th Airlift Wing drops a package in the assessment area during a search and rescue exercise as part of a skills competition, Nov. 12, 2020, at Lake Ouachita, Arkansas. Each aircraft had 30 minutes to search the area, locate the objective and drop supplies nearest to the target. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Mariam Springs)

3 men stand to the side watching Maintainers work

(left) Col. John Schutte, 19th Airlift Wing commander, Col. Dean Martin, 189th Airlift Wing commander, and Col. Joseph Miller, 314th Airlift Wing commander observe the Maintenance portion of the skills completion at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas Nov. 12, 2020. Maintenance members from the 19th, 314th and 189th AWs and 913th Airlift Group were tested on aircraft launch and recovery methods, speed of moving and operating ground equipment, and various maintenance techniques. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jeremy McGuffin)

A C-130J lands on makeshift runway

A C-130J Super Hercules assigned to the 19th Airlift Wing conducts a combat landing and takeoff at All American landing zone at Camp Robinson, Arkansas, Nov. 12, 2020. The 19th, 314th and 189th AWs and 913th Airlift Group competed during a skills competition showcasing numerous Agile Combat Airlift skills such as combat landings, airdrop and combat offloads. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Kristine M. Gruwell)

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. --

The 19th, 314th and 189th Airlift Wings and 913th Airlift Group participated in a Total Force Integration skills competition on Nov. 12 at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas.

Hosted by the 314th AW, the competition, referred to as a turkey shoot, contained four phases with the purpose of challenging and developing multi-capable Airmen by enhancing their Agile Combat Airlift skills.

“The first phase of this competition was a ground phase for loadmasters to help identify where they could precisely deliver cargo,” said Maj. Jonathan Avera, 314th AW chief of tactics. “For the next two phases we conducted two low-level flights with the GPS simulated as inoperable. One was to an All American landing zone and the other was to a simulated-downed aircrew member in the middle of a lake. The last phase was a flight idle slow down competition to see who completed the best slow down to a full stop.”

During this first phases, maintainers fixed and prepped the aircraft, launch crews marshalled and safely launched eight Herks on time, and loadmasters partook in focused ground operations.

In line with Air Mobility Commands’ priority to develop Total Force Mobility Airmen and advance warfighting capabilities to operate more quickly and with greater agility, the competition was designed to be a team effort across Active-Duty, Reserve, Guard, uniformed, and civilian Airmen. It required the entire Total Force to be successful.

 “This is a fun way of employing the aircraft to break up the everyday grind with some friendly competition,” said Tech. Sgt Dustin Rice, 34th Combat Training Squadron C-130 Instructor. “These type of training events help build comradery throughout the entire base to include the guard and reserve. It gives the winning unit bragging rights along with the turkey trophy to prove they are the best on base.”

Herk Nation’s Airmen   showcased their ability to provide a multitude of capabilities in-garrison, and ensure they are able to use these skills when forward deployed.

Aspects of the competition, such as an airdrop used to simulate precise delivery of food, water, and medical supplies for a downed aircrew member, validates the ability of Mobility Airmen to effectively perform every aspect of operations by testing skills not frequently used.

“Team members that are involved in this competition execute to a non-standard mission set,” Avera said. “It’s something we don’t get to train on that often. It’s great for our crewmembers so that whenever they do deploy, they can go with the experience gained from this exercise.”

The 913th AG took home the turkey trophy for this round, spurring on the rest of Herk Nation to elevate the level of competition for chance to showcase their skillset in the future.

These training competitions aim to maximize full-spectrum readiness and maintain our competitive advantage in a rapidly changing operations environment.

 “Our scores with operations and maintenance for each aircraft are combined to determine who the best overall team is—but it’s important for the Total Force to identify that we all have to work together to achieve the greatest results and be the best combat airlifters that we can be,” Avera said.

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