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33d Fighter Wing Executes Exercise Nomad Lightning

  • Published
  • By TSgt. Courtney Chapa
  • 33rd Fighter Wing

Nomads have dominated the skies in various campaigns from World War II to the Vietnam era and beyond. Today, the 33rd Fighter Wing
trains and transforms combat-credible Airmen for future operations in the combat Air Force.

As part of that training, the 33rd FW executed Nomad Lightning June 12-16.

“This exercise provides an opportunity for every member of the 33rd FW to focus on the tactical and logistical challenges that our most formidable adversaries pose,” said Lt. Col. Brad Matherne, 33rd FW Operations Group Deputy Commander. “Through large force missions, immersion briefs, mission planning cells, and live-fly viewing, we are able to expose every Airman, regardless of their specialty, to how critical the 33rd FW mission is.”

Aircraft from the 33rd FW, 125th FW, 53rd Wing, and ADAIR (adversary air) participated in the exercise and flew over 100 sorties during Nomad Lightning.

Along with the flying missions, maintenance personnel were deployed to Cecil Airport and Spaceport, Florida, to execute Agile Combat Employment.

“Their objective was to validate and perform hot pit operations for two F-35As,” said Capt. Kitibhak Bushyakanist, 33rd Maintenance Squadron Director of Operations. “Quality assurance and the maintainers conducted in-depth, hands-on sessions with four transient alert personnel and ensured they had the knowledge to safely perform hot pits on F-35As.”

This technique allows the aircraft to be refueled while the engine is still running. Now that transient alert personnel are certified to perform this task, 33rd maintenance personnel are freed up to perform other duties.

“The goal of Nomad Lighting is for every Airman to walk away with a better understanding that we are in competition with our nation’s enemies every day. That doesn’t change simply because we are an AETC formal training unit,” said Matherne.

Wherever Nomads roam and whenever duty calls, the 33rd FW ensures Airmen are prepared for the fight.