JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- --
The commander of Air Mobility Command visited Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, Jan. 29 through Feb. 2 to meet and speak with Airmen and Soldiers here about the installation’s role in critical national missions.
While here, Gen. Carlton D. Everhart II, AMC commander, also participated in a C-17 training mission and interacted with Airmen, Soldiers, and civic leaders. He also discussed the command’s upcoming premier exercise, Mobility Guardian, and made time to meet with Boeing representatives concerning the KC-46A Pegasus aircraft.
“Washington is one of the best power projection states to be able to work jointly along with our total force partners,” said Everhart.
One of the primary focus areas of his trip was to get an update on AMC’s new premier exercise, Mobility Guardian, and to recognize the contributions made by mobility Airmen and their families.
Mobility Guardian, which is projected to be AMC’s largest readiness exercise, will be a two-week-long, multinational, multi-service, real-world, scenario-driven exercise and is scheduled for August 2017.
The exercise will challenge participants to hone their skills, executing all of AMC’s core capabilities: airlift, air refueling, aeromedical evacuation and enroute mobility support.
“I want to make sure planning for Mobility Guardian is moving in the right direction, which we are,” said Everhart. We want to make sure our pilots, maintainers, and our all our mobility professionals involved have the opportunity to expand their skillsets, while refining their current capability. This is a crawl, walk, run exercise designed to ensure sound fundamentals and readiness are in place across the AMC enterprise.”
JBLM will serve a vital role in ensuring exercise planning, execution, and the command’s historic first readiness exercise.
“It’s the first time we’ve laid out something of this nature and of this magnitude,” he said. “I’m focusing resources on the requirements needed to meet readiness issues. If we can meet those, great, if we fall short, then I expect lessons to be learned. We need a collective team approach to enhancing readiness.”
Overall, Everhart said the command and installation are prepared for Mobility Guardian.
“I’m very happy with where we are right now,” said Everhart.
In addition to Mobility Guardian planning and resources, Everhart made a trip to the Boeing plant in Seattle and stressed the importance of the KC-46 to national defense.
“I just want to make sure the program stays on course, because I need a war-ready airplane from day one when we receive it,” said Everhart.
Everhart ended his trip by reflecting on the role Airmen and the joint team play in mission success.
“It’s been very a dynamic trip--time with the base, time with our joint partners, time with our industry partners--so this was time well invested,” said Everhart. “I don’t know when the next earthquake will occur or when we will be called upon for humanitarian relief, but when our nation calls, we’re there to support. I am thankful for Mobility Airmen and our joint partners. They are always there. Nobody does Rapid Global Mobility better than AMC.”