The "Go To" Airmen When You Want to Get Going

  • Published
  • By TSgt Jeremy J. McClure
  • 185th ARW
In the past, if you wanted a Space A Flight, you would go to one group and if you need to move some cargo, you would go to another group. Now, all of that is integrated into one group that handles all logistics for cargo and passenger on the planes. Known as Aerial Port, the 24 members work to ensure that people and cargo are loaded and moved efficiently from the 185th to all over the world.

"The heavy moving units had airmen taken from them and they were redistributed to other commands," explained Tech. Sgt. Greg Clark. "In October of 2008 we were spun up at the 185th."

The members of Aerial Port work with everyone on base who need to move people and material. They inspect pallets of gear and cargo that will be loaded on the planes for transport to ensure they are packed correctly.

Aerial Port also handle Space A flights and passengers.

"We are responsible for the terminal operations, briefing passengers, and will even handle 'wanding' them before boarding the plane," Clark said.

Before cargo or passengers even come close to the plane, Aerial Port create load plans and passenger manifests. Clark explained, "The program gives us a good baseline for any aircraft that we may load." Space available and weight are just a few variables that are accounted for to ensure the aircraft is used efficiently.

Loading the cargo and passengers is also the responsibility of the group. "We use a NGSL 25k Loader to lift the cargo up to the plane. We also operate the stair car and lavatory maintenance truck. Yes, we are responsible for the lavatories too," said Clark.

One of the biggest challenges facing Aerial Port is the placement of their equipment spread throughout the base. "We are working on a permanent home but for now are working out of a classroom in supply," says Clark. "We have vehicles in three different locations throughout the base."

Another hurdle is the breadth of areas they are responsible for. "There so much to learn," Clark said. Some of the members have also trained with 934th Airlift Wing in Minneapolis, MN to learn and hone valuable skills.

Despite the few obstacles they have, the 185th Aerial Port Airmen are professional and efficient at what they do. Their expertise in the logistics of moving cargo and passengers will continue to be an invaluable asset to the 185th ARW.

The appearance of hyperlinks does not constitute endorsement by the 185th Air Refueling Wing, the Iowa Air National Guard, the United States Air Force or the Department of Defense of the external website, or information, products, or services contained therein. For other than authorized activities such as military exchanges and Services/Morale Welfare and Recreation (MWR) sites, the United States Air Force does not exercise editorial control over the information users may find at these locations. Such links are provided consistent with the stated purpose of the website.