EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska --
Working outside when it’s negative 15 degrees, which is cold enough for your eyelashes to frost over, isn’t the ideal environment for most; but for Airmen with Detachment 1, 3rd Air Support Operations Squadron, it’s just another day.
Last week, Det. 1, 3 ASOS completed their winter functional training exercise, where they endured the bone-chilling cold and increased their overall lethality.
“Being able to operate in arctic conditions is a lot different than operating in ideal conditions,” said Staff Sgt. Timothy Cuoto, the Det. 1, 3 ASOS unit training manager. “When it gets that cold equipment and people can break, but you have to push forward.”
With interior Alaska being an extremely harsh and unforgiving environment, it makes for the perfect place to help prepare and hone the capabilities of the Air Force’s elite operators also known as Tactical Air Control Party.
“We went over some different things that some of our guys haven’t seen yet,” said Staff Sgt. Philip Henderson, the Det. 1, 3 ASOS operational training manager. “We were able to cover tactical ground movements, classroom material, familiarization training and some other essentials.”
Commonly embedded with Marine and Army units, TACP Airmen play an important role in ensuring ground and air forces are on the same page.
“This is as close as it gets,” said Henderson. “Right now these Airmen are learning things they’ll need when they’re deployed.”