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56 ARS Supports Combat Cardinal 2024

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Trenton Jancze
  • 97th Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs

Aircrew from the 56th Air Refueling Squadron supported Airmen from the 375th Air Mobility Wing during a readiness exercise called “Combat Cardinal,” at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, March 13, 2024.

According to the Scott AFB Public Affairs team, “Combat Cardinal was divided into two efforts: ‘Cardinal Sword’ exercised the ability to rapidly deploy to meet any combatant commander's requirements, and ‘Cardinal Shield’ tested the wing's ability to respond to crisis response and force protection scenarios at home station with fewer Airmen.”

The Airmen from Altus AFB, Oklahoma, were a key component during Cardinal Sword. This was the first time the 56th ARS supported an aeromedical evacuation training, providing a unique opportunity for the instructor pilots and boom operators.

“What’s unique about our squadron right now is that we’re trying to build everyone’s experience,” said Lt. Col. Pete Culbert, 56th ARS commander. “What an exercise like this allows us to do is round out the corners of creating a holistic formal training unit instructor. Whether it’s the pilots or boom operators, getting more experience in different mission sets will only make them better instructors when they’re training the initial qualification students, the aircraft commander upgrade, and even future instructors.”

The Airmen from the 56th ARS, along with Airmen from the 730th Air Mobility Training Squadron, were able to provide support for an exercise that tested critical readiness skills for the entire 375th AMW.

“It’s important to get training on the 46, because it’s new to our arsenal,” said Tech. Sgt. Kyle Lipscomb, 375th Aeromedical Evacuation Squadron aeromedical evacuation technician. “Getting this training is crucial for when we’re in an unregulated environment. We’re here, we’re getting this training, we’re getting ready for the fight downrange.”