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JBLE Command and Control establishes AMC C2

U.S. Air Force Airmen assigned to the 633rd Medical Group deploy from Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., Oct. 18, 2017.

Airmen assigned to the 633rd Medical Group deploy from Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., Oct. 18, 2017. The Airmen, including teams from Langley Air Force Base, Eglin AFB, Fla., and Nellis AFB, Nev., will support hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico as part of a Defense Support to Civilian Authorities mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Natasha Stannard)

A U.S. Air Force Airman assigned to the 633rd Medical Group boards a U.S. Air Force C-130 Hercules at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., Oct. 18, 2017.

An Airman assigned to the 633rd Medical Group boards a C-130 Hercules at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., Oct. 18, 2017. The C-130 team from Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Ohio, flew the medical team to Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, in support of Hurricane Maria relief efforts. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Natasha Stannard)

JOINT BASE LANGLEY- EUSTIS, Va. (AFNS) -- Normally, while serving as Joint Base Langley-Eustis command and control specialists, Airmen in the JBLE Command Post focus on the varied missions of JBLE and its tenant wings. However, on Sept. 28, 2017, one critical mission called on these Airmen to support a global response mission.

Overnight the JBLE Command Post became a command and control focal point for Puerto Rico hurricane relief efforts, coordinating with Air Mobility Command, U.S Transportation Command and the Tanker Airlift Control Center, becoming a fully operational air mobility asset.

“I am proud of our young Airmen for stepping up to the plate (and) having the drive, knowing they are directly impacting a global humanitarian relief effort and saving human beings’ lives,” said Kevin Castro, 633rd Air Base Wing Command Post chief.

The command and control team is supporting and coordinating efforts for the Global Response Medical Force from Langley Air Force Base, and Fort Eustis’ 597th Rapid Port Opening Element and 119th Inland Cargo Transfer Company. So far, they’ve supported a total of 23 missions, which included more than 500 tons of cargo and more than 123 personnel.

“With the significance of this mission and knowing we could support it, our Airmen very quickly trained and became the command and control focal point in support of the hurricane relief operations, changing gears and becoming AMC controllers seamlessly,” said Master Sgt. Jennifer Riter, 633rd ABW Command Post command and control noncommissioned officer in charge. “In that first shift, after notification, myself and another Airman had to create continuity consisting of checklists for each shift, contact lists for all the airfield agencies, daily flying schedules, and quick reference guides (while) creating everything in the mindset of an Air Mobility Command controller.”

According to Master Sgt. Stephanie Schwartz, 633rd ABW Command Post superintendent, the checklists were valuable to making the mission a success.

“The next morning after Master Sgt. Riter and Airman Stephen Grana created all the continuity, we were able to step in with no problems at 50 percent manning,” said Schwartz. “Imagine what our team could accomplish if we were fully manned, being the command and control node for JBLE, making sure that we are here for every unit in the local area and help out at any time through the process of rapid deployments.”

The 633rd ABW Command Post is always up to the challenge, ensuring JBLE’s joint mission partners are always prepared to support any contingencies that may come their way.

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