The Importance of Being Ready for the War Fight
By Senior Airman Anthony Agosti, 118th Wing
/ Published March 03, 2018
Nashville, Tenn. -- Being in a constant state of readiness requires a great deal of work and diligence. The 118th Wing is going to great efforts in making sure their Airmen have the proper training essential to staying ready.
“Any time we can get [Airmen] out here on days, anytime that we can facilitate training with another unit, anytime at the very least send them to a specialized class at another location, that’s what we will commit to doing,” said Senior Master Sgt. Keith Jefferson, the operations superintendent within the 118th Mission Support Group Communications Flight. “That’s what we will spend our days and dollars for.”
“Just like the wing, the Air Force sets us up for success; we get all this training for a reason,” said Lt. Col. Stephen Kinzer, the installation deployment officer for the 118th Wing. “The more we soak up and practice it and apply it, the better chances we have to meet our goals.”
The 118th Wing has put such a high value on readiness, they will do whatever it takes to make sure their Airmen are trained and ready for their missions.
“We’ve had partnerships with other sister units, the 134th [Air Refueling Wing] and 164th [Airlift Wing],” said Jefferson. “We’ve had training collaborating with them so we’re not reinventing the wheel; we are kind of putting our heads together.”
“As a wing I feel very confident we are prepared to support the warfighting effort at a high level,” said Kinzer. “Leadership would bend over backwards to get whatever they needed to be successful.”
Continuation training and career field advancement are a prime focus of the wing, said Col. Keith Allbritten, the 118th Wing commander. This type of training works best when done by the people working closest with the Airmen.
“Probably the most important training is the training they get within their own squadron, and from their peers and their supervisors,” said Kinzer. “That’s the best training, that’s how it gets passed down.”
“We don’t want anybody without the expertise to do their job,” said Jefferson. “Our goal is to have them trained to where if you asked him something specific to their area, you can pretty much perform that function.”
With all the focus on training and readiness, people in the wing feel confident they can successfully carry out the war effort in a global environment.
The training has been pretty spot on, said Senior Airman Jeffery Shinholster, a fleet management and analysis Airman from the 118th Logistics Readiness Squadron. When you deploy, it helps to remember your training.
“All the efforts that we are putting in place now I think they are going to make a big difference, they’re going to make a huge difference,” said Jefferson. “The 118th always shows up and makes things happen.”