307th LRS excels in Operation Gator Bite Exercise

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Tambri Cason
  • 307th Bomb Wing Public Affairs

The 307th Logistics Readiness Squadron put their training to the test here, during Operation Gator Bite Feb. 3. 

Thirty-two Airmen from six flights throughout the 307th LRS showcased their ability to execute and respond to mission essential tasks during a simulated wartime environment exercise. 

Under normal circumstances, these six flights work together in the 307th LRS to provide material, vehicle, and fuels management, as well as deployment and distribution across the 307th Bomb Wing. 

“Everything has to be in line to accomplish that end goal of getting that part out, getting those passengers out, getting a vehicle loaded,” said Capt. Charles Smith, officer in charge of Operation Gator Bite exercise. “Every piece has to fit together for mission success. This exercise gives them the ability to see that in totality.”

Operation Gator Bite added the challenges of degraded technology operations and vehicle malfunctions in a contaminated environment. 

Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) Level 4 was introduced at the start of the exercise, explained 1st Lt. Shannon Cross, officer in charge of quality assurance. A challenging task item required members to perform specific career field tasks in MOPP level 4 for two hours, she said.

“Chem gear is not something you should be comfortable with initially,” said Chief Master Sgt. Brandon Turner, 307th LRS senior enlisted leader. “We want to make sure that our members are reminded that there is a reality where we are going to have to experience living and operating in any location, in any situation, at any time.” 

Subject matter experts were selected from each flight along with members in upgrade training to respond to these wartime scenarios.

“Typing was a surprisingly hard challenge,” said Senior Airman Charmy Patel. “With the gloves, I had to use a pen to type on the keyboard, but I think that’s another way to realize that nothing is impossible if you have the dedication.”

While some exercise scenarios covered routine tasks for evaluation, others took Airmen out of their comfort zones. 

“In my section, ground trans, normally in MOPP 4 we would be taking cover,” said Master Sgt. Chris McNeal, ground transportation flight chief. “But, with this exercise, we moved passengers, we moved cargo, all while being in MOPP Level 4.” 

“Once the two-hour requirement was met and the assessment team felt all training requirements had been met, members were updated to MOPP level 0 and successfully completed the exercise, said Cross. 

Throughout Operation Gator Bite, 307th LRS members were tested in multiple scenarios over the course of three hours, completing 107 training tasks. 

“Our plan is to build upon exercises like this,” said Smith. “Whether it’s locally or participating in other exercise opportunities throughout the Pacific. We’re preparing them now for that next step.”