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Savannah Air Guard training center turns Operational to support Hurricane Maria

  • Published
  • By by Tech. Sgt. Amber Williams
  • 165th Airlift Wing

The hostess city of the south, Savannah, Ga. has been designated by the Air National Guard as the hub of operations to Puerto Rico in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma and Maria.

For the first time in its history, the Air Dominance Center, a training facility at the Savannah Air National Guard base is used in an operational capacity.

The Air Dominance Center at the Savannah Air National Guard Base, Savannah, Ga., is postured as a training facility for units to conduct Air-to-Air Combat Training Missions for 4th and 5th generation fighters for the Air National Guard, Active Duty Air Force and the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.

“We usually have airlift aircraft arrive for exercises along with the fighter jets. Usually to transport personnel and equipment to maintain the fighters,” said Chief Master Sgt. Brian Saxon, Chief Enlisted Manager of the ADC. “The 165th Airlift Wing has a ramp that is painted for C-130 Hercules parking. The ADC on the other hand, has a ramp painted for fighter jets,” said Saxon.

 “This means the airfield management and transient alert crews really have to be highly skilled to watch for things like, wing-tip safety and clearances,” said Saxon.

In addition to the aircrew aspect of support the hub-and-spoke mission, the ADC has staff manning the Personnel Support for Contingency Operations line, the dining facility, and billeting are all being manned 24 hours a day.

 “When we were first told that we would be going into 24 hour operations, my first thought was, ‘Yes! This is what I joined the guard for,’” said Master Sgt. Tameitra Bryant, the Financial Management Superintendent at the ADC.

“I couldn’t be more proud of our team,” said Col. Emmanuel Haldopoulos, Commander of the Air Dominance Center. “We’ve perfected the exercises that we host. But there was no playbook for our most recent mission – we relied on our team’s hard-work, experience, creativity, and determination of the Airmen of the ADC and the 165th AW to make it happen.