HomeNewsArticle Display

Nellis AFB to support Hurricane Irma rescue operations

released

Airmen assigned to the 66th Rescue Squadron, 823rd Maintenance Squadron and 99th Logistics Readiness Squadron load an HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter into a C-5M Super Galaxy at the Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Sept. 10, 2017. The C-5, the largest aircraft in the Air Force inventory, departed Nellis AFB with personnel and equipment to support search and rescue efforts in Florida following Hurricane Irma. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Andrew D. Sarver)

released

Staff Sgt. Robert Schuetz, 22nd Airlift Squadron loadmaster, secures an HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopter loaded on a C-5M Super Galaxy at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Sept 10, 2017. Nellis AFB Airmen and equipment deployed to Florida to support search and rescue efforts following the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Andrew D. Sarver)

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. (AFNS) -- In mid-afternoon Sept. 8, 2017, the 66th Rescue Squadron and 823rd Maintenance Squadron assigned to Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, received a call from U.S. Northern Command to ready teams to support the Federal Emergency Management Agency search and rescue efforts in the Florida Keys following the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.

Nellis AFB personnel loaded a C-5M Super Galaxy cargo aircraft assigned to the 60th Air Mobility Wing, Travis AFB, California, with three HH-60G Pave Hawk helicopters, two personnel recovery task forces, 54 support personnel and approximately 60 short tons of supplies and departed the base Sept. 11.

“One life is worth saving,” said Staff Sgt. Nicholas Borresen, 23rd Maintenance Group quality assurance inspector. “If we have the funds available, the people available to do it, why not?”

Borresen is familiar with the preparation needed to perform a rescue mission. He was also a crew member for Operation Tomodachi, a search and rescue mission to help the victims of the tsunami that struck Japan in 2013. He is confident Nellis AFB will be just as effective in the Florida Keys.

“Everybody we have going right now is the best of the best,” said Borresen, who is responsible for inspecting the maintenance on the aircraft. “We should not have a problem having these aircraft perform for us. We provide safe aircraft for operators who can, in turn, go out and save lives.”

As it takes a village to raise a child, it takes several units to get the aircraft in the task force on their way to Florida. Training was put to the test as the 823rd MXS fought forces out of their control – as the clock ticked, nature roared from above.

Dodging a Las Vegas lightning storm, the unit pulled helicopters into the hangar, prepped and restaged them on the flight line before loading them onto the C-5 Galaxy cargo aircraft, said Senior Airman Makayla Best, 823rd MXS assistant dedicated crew chief.

While the 823rd MXS prepared the aircraft, Senior Airman Kayleigh Jones, Detachment 1, 563rd Operations Support Squadron aircrew flight equipment technician, prepared equipment for the four-man HH-60 aircrews, to include pilots and special missions aviators, who would be performing day and night rescue missions.

For Jones, this was more than just an Air Force mission.

“I have a lot of friends down in Florida, a lot of family down in Florida still, so I’m glad to be part of this team,” she said. “‘These things we do so that others may live.’”

Finally, recovery teams prepared to work with local authorities and other military branches to maximize rescue efforts.

“Once we get wheels on the ground, it’s going to be our priority to coordinate with those guys as they will be our eyes and ears on the ground,” said Capt. Keoki Kimzin, 55th Rescue Squadron combat rescue pilot at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona, and leading one of the four-man teams assisting with civilian evacuations and possible medical treatment. “They will allow us to integrate with them to do our job more efficiently as they are the experts in the area.”

In less than 18 hours of the call, the C-5 was packed and ready to take flight.

“We always say, ‘Practice like you play,’” said Best. “It’s rough because it’s somebody’s worst day when they need us, but it’s what we’re here for – it’s what we live for.”

This is the second call Nellis AFB has received to support USNORTHCOM’s mission to assist lead federal relief agencies in helping those affected by recent hurricanes, in an effort to minimize suffering while continuing its mission of defending the homeland.

Thirty-one Nellis AFB members assigned to the 99th Air Base Wing, 58th Rescue Squadron and the 23rd Wing were requested to assist with Hurricane Harvey response efforts in Texas. These members were tasked with providing humanitarian relief as well as command and control to military forces assisting FEMA, state and local authorities with the relief efforts. Nellis AFB stands ready to provide additional support, should it be requested.

Engage

Twitter
RT @AETCommand: For the first time at @LukeAFB, AMS Airmen painted a #F16 one solid medium-gray color—a simple yet critical task that will…
Twitter
“When asked whether we still require all three of these legs of the triad, I answer, ‘we do’...we must acknowledge… https://t.co/atezdKA5tT
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Battling #COVID; a cyber Airman’s story - https://t.co/HsJv6J7r2A #ReserveReady #ReserveResilient #ReadyAF https://t.co/y7…
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: #ReserveCitizenAirman makes life-saving decision - https://t.co/ZPviQZRrEX (Story by the @307BombWing) #ReserveReady #Rese
Twitter
The Impact of Sharing Stories of Recovery and Resiliency Lt Col Katharine McGregor did not know much about the… https://t.co/17VibuxnTc
Twitter
Many search for years to find their true passion in life. For Staff Sgt. Camrin Northrop, a firefighter for both th… https://t.co/QcNrBXPCV0
Twitter
From their homes to yours, check out the @AirNatlGuard Band of the South! #ReadyAF #AimHigh https://t.co/yb7GhZZ5A3
Twitter
Reintegration will be a deliberate & phased approach to protect Airmen & Space Professionals. Learn to maintain rea… https://t.co/egQSAV5uRB
Twitter
The MQ-1B Predator is an armed, multi-mission, medium-altitude, long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft used for i… https://t.co/livZYQyXnH
Twitter
Dr. Quinton Sasnett, a faculty member at Air University, talks about the university's civilian associates degree pr… https://t.co/0BgoCiGCUy
Twitter
Improving mental health through expressive writing. @KadenaAirBase https://t.co/zVoYTQQl5z
Twitter
Medical pros at Kadena Air Base, 3-D printed naso-pharyngeal swabs to test potential #COVID19 patients. The dental… https://t.co/h8q1HgLjRZ
Twitter
The MC-12W is a medium-to low-altitude, twin-engine turboprop aircraft. Its primary mission is providing intelligen… https://t.co/st7WRJLDHB
Twitter
Know what resources, treatments & therapies are available for invisible wounds. https://t.co/H2A7fYb8s3
Twitter
“The Total Force team at Eielson plays a pivotal role that extends throughout Alaska and projects into the Arctic.”… https://t.co/7nSYEtYWHj
Twitter
RT @AETCommand: 🙌🎉 Congrats to the @usairforce's newest pilots as Specialized Undergraduate Pilot Training Class 20-18 graduates today at @…
Twitter
.@JointBasePHH Airmen participate in a ramp drop from a C-17 Globemaster III. The 25th Air Support Ops Squadron is… https://t.co/AZVT6Qzmgv
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: It is a pleasure to be in #Alaska to see #Airmen and #SpaceProfessionals in action! Whether it’s F-35s & F-22s protectin…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,252,662
Follow Us