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37th AMU bombs away competition

Airmen from 37th Aircraft Maintenance Unit clinched victory during a weapons load crew quarterly competition, Jan. 29. Various load crews from the 28th Bomb Wing showcased their skills by racing against time to load explosives on a mock B-1 bomber accurately and safely. "The competition shows how well we are prepared to load up a jet as fast and safely as we can to complete the mission that needs to be done," said Airman 1st Class Ignacio Luna, 28th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron weapons load crew member. "The biggest challenge we faced was that we were up against a crew that was far more experienced than we are, so we were the underdogs." Though the 37th AMU were not favorites of the competition, they worked together and got the job done. "Weapons load competitions build team work and unit camaraderie," said Tech. Sgt. Harold VanderMolen, 28th MXG loading standardization crew team chief. "They also provide the winning unit recognition for their hard work and the pride of showcasing the 28th BW Load Crew of the Quarter trophy in their unit." The Loading Standardization Crew evaluates each load crew unit competing on performing safe and reliable weapons loading operations in accordance with B-1 bomber weapons loading technical orders, and Air Force instructions. The load crew members were required to load two 500 pound Mk-82 general purpose bombs, and one Guided Bomb Unit 31v3 within a strict 25-minute time standard. VanderMolen added these competitions are serious business and crews dedicate time prior to ensure their best performance. "Crews will come down to the Weapons Standardization area and practice the load," VanderMolen said. "They'll inspect the munitions and equipment prior to load competition day to ensure nothing will be missed. It's easy to read it in a book, but it is a whole different story actually performing it." Though the event offers team and morale building, the competition tests the Airmen's knowledge and skills by pushi

PHOTO BY: Airman Donald Knechtel
VIRIN: 160129-F-MZ237-339.JPG
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