85 tons in 48 hours

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Ryan Zeski
  • 127th WIng
ALPENA COMBAT READINESS CENTER, Mich. -- Proving their ability to quickly and safely move anybody, anything, anywhere, nine Selfridge Airmen recently loaded dozens of Michigan Army National Guard soldiers and some 85 tons of equipment - including four large artillery pieces - into cargo aircraft for transport to Europe for an early spring exercise there.

The Selfridge Airmen - from the Small Air Terminal section of the 127th Logistics Readiness Squadron - now serve the entire state of Michigan as the only military aerial port unit in the state.

Able to respond to the cargo movement needs of any Michigan unit, 127th LRS Airmen temporarily relocated to the Combat Readiness Training Center in Alpena, Mich., to support a mobilization exercise of the Michigan Army National Guard's 119th Field Artillery.

While at the CRTC the LRS team prepped and palletized over 80 tons of equipment and ammunition. Within minutes of the first C-17 Globemaster III landing at the CRTC the team quickly went to work. Wasting no time they were able to successfully load and send the jet off on time. The same level of quality was applied to the next C-17 landing about an hour after the first.

"They made it pretty effortless on our behalf," said Sgt. Maj. Jay Bennett, 119th Field Artillery. "This allowed us to hit the ground running."

Moving high priority shipments quickly and efficiently is just another day of work for the 127th LRS. It took less than 48 hours to prepare and load more than 80 tons of equipment and approximately 100 soldiers onto the three aircraft.

"We have the assets available, it just makes sense for the Army to use them," said Tech. Sgt. Hart Haire, 127th Logistics Readiness Squadron logistics and material planner.

Participating in exercises with the Michigan Army National Guard benefits everyone involved. Six of the nine LRS Airmen are traditional status guardsmen. This exercise provides opportunities not readily available at Selfridge ANGB and Airmen are able to receive training they otherwise would not be able to get on a drill weekend.

"They get training here that is valuable to their career field," said Haire. "They are actually doing their job here."

The 127th Logistics Readiness Squadron is one of the most diverse work places in the 127th Wing, providing Transportation, Aerial Port, Supply and Readiness support to the 127th Wing. The 127th LRS is a component of the 127th Mission Support Group, 127th Wing, Michigan Air National Guard. The squadron is stationed at Selfridge Air National Guard Base, Mich.

About the 127th Wing
Comprised of approximately 1,700 personnel and flying both the A-10 Thunderbolt II and the KC-135 Stratotanker, the Michigan Air National Guard's 127th Wing supports Air Mobility Command and Air Combat Command operations by providing highly-skilled Airmen to missions domestically and overseas. The 127th Wing is the host unit at Selfridge Air National Guard Base, which marks its 98th year of continuous military air operations in 2015.