52nd CBCS feels the 'bite' of Arctic Gator exercise

  • Published
  • By Robert Talenti
  • 689th Combat Communications Wing Public Affairs
Members of the 52nd Combat Communications Squadron convoyed here from Robins Air Force Base, Ga. Jan. 23 and dug in the next day for 12-day field training exercise.

Field training exercise "Arctic Gator" ends Feb. 3, but before it does, nearly 80 Airmen will test their ability to establish a fully functional bare base.

"Things are really coming together," said Capt. Gilberto Perez, 52nd CCS operations officer as the convoy arrived. "We are knocking it out little by little and it is good to see people getting after it."

Perez said attention to detail has paid off for the team as the base has taken shape.

"It's all in the details," he said. "You can make the best plans, but it is all about execution."

The squadron isn't content with simply building the base and has used the opportunity to evaluate its efficiency in making something from nothing.

"Looks pretty good so far with just a couple minor issues," said Staff Sgt. Bryon Dunn, a 52nd CCS exercise evaluation team member, as he observed the installation of a ground multiband terminal satellite dish. "We (EET) all have oversight for the entire exercise but focus on our [subject matter expertise] functional areas."

To hone that expertise, the exercise is giving younger Airmen a first chance to put training into action.

"This is my first time moving the equipment with attached mobilizers in a convoy and being in the field with our equipment," said Airman 1st Class Zachary Burket, a 52nd CCS ground radar systems apprentice. "I read through the procedures but it is great to actually see how all of the pieces come apart and go back together on the airfield surveillance radar and operations radar shelter."