Kaiserslautern American - April 17, 2020

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Airman overcomes difficult childhood, finds joy, Page 8


Earth Day 2020: Time to think about mother Earth, Page 12


COVID-19 ops: Light, lean, lethal, Page 16

April 17, 2020 | Volume 44, Number 15


Hiking and biking apps, Page 17


COVID-19 anxiety? 86th MDOS offers cognitive tools, Page 21

Read the KA online at KaiserslauternAmerican.com

Mobility Airmen conduct historic first aeromedical evacuation mission using Transport Isolation System by Air Mobility Command Public Affairs Air Mobility Command aircrew and medical personnel conducted the first operational use of the Transport Isolation System (TIS) to perform an aeromedical evacuation of three U.S. government contractors who tested positive for Coronavirus, from Afghanistan to Ramstein Air Base, April 10. Upon arrival at Ramstein, the patients were transferred to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center for medical treatment. The AE mission, REACH 725, marked the first operational use of the TIS since its development during the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, and the first movement of COVID-19 positive patients aboard U.S. Air Force aircraft. The TIS is an infectious disease containment unit designed to minimize risk to aircrew, medical attendants, and the airframe, while allowing medical care to be provided to patients in-flight.

Three U.S. Air Force medical Airmen exit a C-17 Globemaster III aircraft following the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10. The TIS is an infectious disease containment unit designed to minimize contamination risk to aircrew and medical attendants, while allowing in-flight medical care for patients afflicted by a disease — in this case, COVID-19. Photo by Staff Sgt. Devin Nothstine

See TIS, Page 6

Questions answered for civilian employees by Tech Sgt. Jocelyn Ford 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs Prior to the question and answer portion of the virtual town hall April 13, Brig. Gen. Mark R. August, 86th Airlift Wing commander, highlighted the first operational use of the Transportation Isolation System.

The system is designed to transport patients with contagious diseases from austere locations to a place they can receive definitive care. A team of Air Mobility Command Airmen activated the TIS, successfully and safely delivering three Americans for treatment as the mission of the World’s Best Wing continues.

Chief Master Sgt. Ernesto Rendon, Jr., 86th AW command chief, reminded viewers of the resources available to assist them with resiliency. He also discussed the purpose of leadership in this pandemic, the importance of physical and mental health, and overall resilience. Clint Lock, from the civilian

personnel office, joined Ramstein leadership for the town hall to answer questions for civilian employees in the Kaiserslautern Military Community. Below are summarized answers to some of the questions fielded during the session. Can we talk about proper mask wear? In both the Base Exchange and Commissary there are a handful

of people who have their noses exposed, and many families come in without face coverings on their kids. The goal for wearing a protective face covering is to stop the spread of germs, especially if you are asymptomatic. Proper wear means the cloth covers both the nose and mouth. Wear of a protective face covering is mandatory See QUESTIONS, Page 2

Kaiserslautern American

Page 2 QUESTIONS from Page 1 at the Base Exchange, Commissary or any other public gathering place for ages two years or older. It’s also mandatory to wear a face covering when coming through the base gates. Can more guidance be given on the choice of staying home on administrative leave if you have an autoimmune disease and how the process would work? Healthy employees always have the option to request personal leave for safety reasons. If you feel as though you would like to take leave, please do so and commanders are encouraged to approve those requests. The categories of high risk employees are defined for us by the Center for Disease Control or, for our local national colleagues, through the Robert Koch Institute. Guidance has been provided to commanders and is posted on our website. These circumstances will be handled on a case-by-case basis. For employees who are asymptomatic, report to your chain of command in writing. You will be required to submit medical documentation to support your request. Supervisors need to exhaust all human resource flexibilities prior to putting use of weather and safety leave, such as telework or alternate work location, to ensure workforce protection measures. Employees on weather and safety leave must remain in the local area and are subject to recall. If you become ill, you would need to go out on sick leave. For further information, please refer to the detailed guidance on our website, then elevate any questions through your chain of command. Does the health protection condition depend solely on the healthcare situation in the U.S. or in host nations? For example, if Germany downgrades the health care risk and people return to work, will my husband be allowed to return from his deployment? The current HPCON is Charlie. That decision was made at the Secretary of Defense level and

covers all Department of Defense forces. We cannot know for sure if we will see the downgrade based on localized conditions. However, we will continue to keep you informed as we get more information on this topic. As for deployments, work with your command team and explain your unique situation. There are opportunities for us to do what’s right by families and by our service members. If you have a specific concern, route that through your chain of command for guidance on exception to policy requests for possible approval. What is it going to look like to return back to normal operations? Our planning teams are already working this. Efforts will be closely coordinated with the Army and the headquarters here on Ramstein. However, we are currently in HPCON Charlie as directed by the Secretary of Defense. More information will become available as we work through this. How do we get our college students home, since both the Traffic Management Office and Personnel told me they will not even consider starting until June? If your college student has orders for student dependent travel and this is a financial hardship, this is a perfect example of a time to execute an exception to policy. For those who have already used your student dependency travel, work with a copy of the parents’ orders, Status of Forces stamp and dependent ID card. There is the option to fly back commercially. However there is an automatic and mandatory 14-day quarantine upon arrival. Will General Schedule employees be eligible to request a one year extension? How will PCS orders be prioritized once the stop movement is lifted? These will have to be handled on a case-by-case basis. Get with your supervisor and the civilian personnel office to help determine a potential way ahead. In general, if you’ve been here for three years, an extension can be requested by your commander. If you’ve been

here over five, or are at the fiveyear mark, there are provisions already in place for a short term extension of up to 180 days that can be requested. Those however, remain mission-based and adjudicated by the appropriate approval authority. Please get with your supervisor and elevate that through to civilian personnel. As it relates to the permanent change of station moves, in the order by which they will be decided or executed, this issue is currently being discussed. On the military front, there is no automatic one-year extension for military, either. We’re working through extensions, but we’re following the normal processes for those as well. Are you putting Airmen in lodging once they get back from deployment? We have an installation quarantine and isolation plan. Most likely, this will not be required. However, it will depend on individual circumstances that will need to be addressed at the unit level and passed to the appropriate authorities. What’s the difference between social gatherings of more than two people, versus people required to go to work with more than 20 people near each other? The two-people, social gathering rule refers to social purposes; the latter relates to military- or work-related businesses. We’re not allowed to gather with groups larger than two people socially, and there’s a fine associated. However, when it comes to military, we’ve got to get the mission done. What is the most efficient way for people to get mental health support if they’re unable to get support on base? If you require mental health services, reach out to our mental health office. If they can’t physically see you, they will work through the referral process through the TRICARE network to get you the appropriate services. There are many resources available. The COVID hotline was recently established; you can call

April 17, 2020 in and have a discussion with a qualified mental health specialist who will be able to talk through some of the issues you may be dealing with. There are Military Family Life Consultants, chaplains and Military OneSource in addition to our Mental Health clinic. For more information about resources available to you, reach out to your first sergeant or key spouse and they can assist. Is there any plan in the works to get more service members tested once more tests become available to ensure medical records reflect contraction in case there are long term effects? The medical community is only testing individuals that meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or World Health Organization requirements. Once a test comes back positive for coronavirus disease 2019, it will be appropriately annotated in your medical records for the future. Is there a push to update and correct where necessary employee position descriptions as listed in FASCLASS or MyBix with regards to categories “emergency essential” and “telework eligible”? Supervisors are always asked to keep position descriptions accurate and current. These processes continue and can be accomplished virtually through both the Civilian Personnel Office and Air Force Personnel Center. Additionally, procedures for telework have been placed on the CPO website to include the required documentation and the training. When can we register a new car? Reach out to your first sergeant and squadron commander as they are authorized to approve exceptions to policy when warranted. Do inbound PCS members have to quarantine for 14 days when arriving to Ramstein? If so, where do they stay? Who handles getting food or other necessities? This is a new policy and we are working the specific details. We will continue to pass the information as it becomes available. This is the time to reach out to the gaining unit to make sure

they take care of you if you have any issues. Hiring action has already started for my replacement for my family’s August DEROS. In the event the DEROS is pushed due to another stop movement, what happens to me in limbo? Will I retain my current position and will that hiring action be placed on hold? Hiring actions do continue to ensure we remain postured once the crisis is over. We are working actions to establish effective dates to ensure both inbound and outbound can navigate effectively once the stop movement is lifted. You will remain at your current position until such time as we establish a new move date for you back to the U.S. This may create a temporary, short-term overlap here. However, we’ll be able to navigate that and it will have no impact on your employment. Can we explore different safety measure initiatives at fitness centers to get them back open? Some decisions were made at the Office of the Secretary of Defense level. As we work through our team of experts and transform into a proactive posture, we’re discussing decisions that will be made locally to get back to a more normal state of operations. However, the gym, child development centers and schools are outside of our decision making authority. It’s going to be some time before that decision is made. If Germany puts a moratorium on rent payment, are service members still expected to pay rent? There’s been no changes to overseas housing allowance. As long as Overseas Housing Allowance and Living Quarters Allowance continues to be paid, you need to pay your rent. With the vast amount of civilians representing different commands as tenant units, which guidance should we follow? Not every tenant is part of USAFE. We are very fortunate to have a See QUESTIONS, Page 3

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April 17, 2020

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QUESTIONS from Page 2 large and complex service population here at Ramstein that includes multiple tenant units. Measures implemented by the installation command in regards to protection of the force and our mission apply to all tenants. If you have specific questions, please elevate those to your chain of command. How will the stop movement impact members coming up on priority placement programs? PPP procedures will continue as normal, with the exception of travel that’s connected to the stop movement order.

For those who have accepted positions and have orders, those orders will be amended to change the effective date once the stop movement is lifted. If you have accepted a position and you don’t have orders, we will establish an effective date outside of the stop movement order. If you’ve received a valid job offer from the Air Force Personnel Center, please connect back with them and continue the process to accept the offer. Again, your established effective date will be put outside the stop movement order. Lastly, for those coming up on your

DEROS, you will continue to be registered virtually with a member of the CPO staff. For alternative work schedules, what level of supervision has authority? Alternative work schedules are a firstlevel supervisor authority, in connection with the commander’s approval. Please get with your supervisor for an alternative work schedule to help increase physical distancing in the workplace. The Department of Labor posted on their website about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act emergency paid sick leave for up to 12 weeks for GS

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employees with school aged children to care for. Any idea when that will be going into effect? The public law itself came into effect on April 1. However, we have not received guidance on execution. As soon as that information is available, we will get it out to the workforce. The full virtual town hall video can be viewed on the Ramstein Facebook page. Visit the Ramstein homepage (www. ramstein.af.mil) and go to the COVID-19 tab located in the top-right side of the page for the most up-to-date information.

86th AMXS aircraft sanitization helps flatten curve of COVID-19 Story & photos by Senior Airman Kristof J. Rixmann 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs Airmen assigned to the 86th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron carried out newly implemented disinfection procedures on all C-130J Super Hercules aircraft flights prior to departure and upon arrival on Ramstein Air Base, April 1. The Center for Disease Control and National Institutes of Health have repeatedly referenced “flattening the curve” in regard to containing coronavirus disease 2019. In epidemiology, flattening the curve describes an ideal situation where the spread of the virus is slowed, resulting in fewer people who need treatment at any one given time. Doing so alleviates some of the stress endured by hospitals and their staff, globally. The now common practice of physical distancing, and the disinfection of every C-130J Super Hercules aircraft performed by the 86th AMXS are both actions designed to combat the spread of COVID-19 and help flatten the curve. “Disinfection of these aircraft has high priority due to the large amount of traffic we see every day,” said U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Kyle Hodge, 86th AMXS flying crew chief. “The disinfection procedures started after concern for COVID-19 emerged on a

worldwide scale.” Disinfection of an aircraft differs from the decontamination process used in chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear emergencies. Using a bottle of 70-to-30 percent alcohol-to-water cleaning solution, disinfecting a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft includes taking measures such as sanitization of high-touch points, to include handrails, seat belts and static lines. “Primarily, disinfection focuses on these high-touch points,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Ryan Putnam, 37th Aircraft Maintenance Unit officer in charge. “Disinfection focuses more-so on preventative measures before a COVID-19 case appears, while decontamination would be something utilized in the event COVID-19 is confirmed on a C-130J Super Hercules.” As far as semantics go, one might argue an area needing disinfection is a contaminated area, and an area needing decontamination is an infectious one. To the layman, the terms might seem interchangeable; but to the aircraft maintainers, disinfection means maintaining a preventative posture before the presence of COVID-19 and decontamination means exposure mitigation after it shows up. In a perfect world, the decontamination procedures won’t ever be needed. Regardless, members of the 86th AMXS are prepared should they become necessary.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Kyle Hodge, 86th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron flying crew chief, poses in front of a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, Ramstein Air Base, April 1. As concern over the coronavirus disease 2019 continued to emerge, the 86th AMXS implemented thorough disinfection procedures to ensure a minimum risk of exposure to the virus.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Kyle Hodge, 86th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron flying crew chief, wipes down a high-touch area of contact on a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, Ramstein Air Base, April 1. As concern over the coronavirus disease 2019 continued to emerge, the 86th AMXS implemented thorough disinfection procedures to ensure a minimum risk of exposure to the virus.

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Kyle Hodge, 86th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron flying crew chief, wipes down hydraulic switches with a disinfectant solution on a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft, Ramstein Air Base, April 1. As concern over the coronavirus disease 2019 continued to emerge, the 86th AMXS implemented thorough disinfection procedures to ensure a minimum risk of exposure to the virus.

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Blood donors mission critical to maintain military’s blood supply During the COVID-19 pandemic, appointments are available weekly at the Landstuhl Blood Donor Center. Baumholder Blood Drive: April 20-21, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Kleber Blood Drive: April 22, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Blood donation is a mission-essential activity and donors are needed more than ever, now by APPOINTMENT ONLY to maintain social distancing measures. All the blood donated to the Armed Services Blood Program stays within the Dept. of Defense, for forward-deployed military as well as patients at military hospitals throughout Europe. The ASBP - Europe is accepting blood donations from military, civilians, retirees and family members at the Blood Donor center on Landstuhl and during community blood drives scheduled at U.S. bases within Germany. Be the lifeline for the front lines: find all Dept. of Defense blood drives in Europe and make an appointment TODAY at www.militarydonor.com, Sponsor Code: Europe. COVID-19 updates for KMC Personnel looking for updated information regarding coronavirus and changes to base facilities can visit www.ramstein. af.mil/COVID-19/ Attention all retirees and surviving spouses The 86 AW Retiree Activities Office (RAO) is closed until further notice. For



MARCH 30 7:19 a.m.: Major traffic collision in Landstuhl MARCH 31 3:50 p.m.: Damage to personal property in Vogelweh Housing Area APRIL 3 3:22 p.m.: Major traffic collision in Landstuhl 5:01 p.m.: Major traffic collision in Landstuhl APRIL 4 4:01 p.m.: Theft of a motor vehicle in Kaiserslautern 9:12 p.m.: Reckless driving in Kapaun Air Station

THE HOUSING HYPE Photo by Golubovy / Shutterstock.com

urgent situations (until we re-open our doors) that would normally be addressed to the RAO, you can email jim.barrante@ fcgh.net. Community Strengths and Needs Assessment If you want to see changes in your military community take a few minutes to complete the Community Strengths and Needs Assessment! It is an easy online survey open to Soldiers, civilians, and family members. The survey is designed to capture the qualitative “pulse” of community members’ feelings on quality of life, health, safety, and satisfaction within the environment of an Army installation. Let your voice be heard by going to: https:// usaphcapps.amedd.army.mil/Sur vey/ se.ashx?s=25113745218B31B9. RAO director, KMC retiree council co-chair needed The Retiree Activities Office, a volunteer-based organization that supports retirees, active-duty members, and spouses throughout the KMC, has an immediate opening for a new director. The RAO functions as a liaison between the retiree population and the 86th AW commander. Separately, the KMC retiree council needs a volunteer to be the co-chair. The KMC retiree council focuses on outreach to the KMC retiree community and their families. For more information about these positions or how to volunteer, please contact the RAO office at 86aw.rao@us.af.mil or DSN 4805486 or civ 06371-47-5486.

Stay safe during COVID-19 Self-Help Store During this time of heightened awareness and protection against potential health risks associated with COVID-19, the KMC Housing Office remains dedicated to assisting our housing occupants with associated home maintenance responsibilities. As you spend more time at home, please consider using the Self-Help Store to ensure/maintain the quality and safety of your home. Locations: Ramstein - Bldg. 859 Vogelweh - Bldg. 1070 Hours of operation: Mon to Fri 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sat 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The KMC Housing Office is committed to providing our residents with the necessary tools and resources to help ensure a clean,

safe and healthy living environment. As residents, you are responsible for the cleanliness and simple maintenance and repair of your home such as: changing light bulbs, replacing sink stoppers or shower hoses, cleaning stove burners and basic pest control. The SelfHelp Stores at Ramstein & Vogelweh remain ready to support our on-base residents. Some ideas while practicing physical distancing: 1) Inspect your home for overlooked (winter) maintenance items 2) Start your ” Spring Cleaning” 3) Trim your trees and bushes - hedge trimmers are available at the Self-Help Store 4) As time permits, don’t forget to water and mow your lawn (seed/fertilizer and other lawn tools available at Self-Help) Follow us on Facebook https://www. facebook.com/KMCHousingOffice/

COMMUNITY EVENTS Photo by Andrey_Popov/Shutterstock.com Photo by Schmidt_Alex / Shutterstock.com

10:24 p.m.: COVID-19 restrictions violation/Illegal gathering in Weilerbach APRIL 5 1:50 a.m.: COVID-19 restrictions violation/Illegal gathering in Vogelweh Housing Area 10:34 a.m.: Major traffic collision in Walhalben APRIL 6 1:01 p.m.: Larceny of private property in Kindsbach APRIL 7 3:08 p.m.: Larceny of government and private property in Vogelweh Housing Area 3: 20 p.m.: Animal bite in Vogelweh Housing Area

Editor’s note: The purpose of the weekly blotter is to deliver a chronological listing of criminal activity in the KMC. The information contained in the blotter is not indicative of crime trends or the targeting of service members or their dependents. The location and nature of the entries is dependent upon where the crime was reported and not necessarily where the crime took place.

»» Military Saves Month: Military Saves encour-

ages the entire military community to take the Military Saves pledge and for organizations to promote savings year-round, and especially during Military Saves Month in April. Military Saves also works with government agencies, defense credit unions, military banks, and other non-profit organizations to promote savings and debt reduction. Each week in April Military Saves features highlighted programs. (Apr. 1-4 is Save Automatically, Apr. 6-10 is Save to Retire, Apr. 13-18 is Save for the Unexpected, Apr. 20-25 is Save with a Plan and the final week, Apr. 27-30 is Save by Paying Down Debt.) Head over to militarysaves.org for more information. »» Family and MWR Virtual Events: Stay connected, inspired and engaged with us even during this time of isolation. Every morning at 7 a.m. check in with our Facebook pages (https://www.facebook.com/RheinlandPfalzFMWR/ or https://www.facebook.com/ BaumholderFMWR/) to see the schedule for the day. Expect workouts, recipes for breakfasts, lunches, snacks and dinner, as well as child activities, fun polls, hobby ideas, ACS Community Support, and any updates to

the current situation. Our Instagram page, rheinlandpfalzmwr, is also mirroring our Facebook so if Instagram is more your thing, you won’t miss out over there! Don’t see something you want to see? Submit your ideas and requests for anything you want us to highlight in future programing, we are here for you! For more information, go to kaiserslautern.armymwr.com or baumholder.armymwr.com. »» SHAWINGZ Open for Takeout and Delivery:

Getting tired of cooking ten times a day and always cleaning the kitchen? Take a break and get takeout or delivery with Shawingz! Baumholder location is open daily, seven days a week from 11 a.m.- 9 p.m. Shawingz, located in the Kazabra Club in Kaiserslautern is open Mon-Thu from 10 a.m. - 8 p.m., Fri from 10 a.m.- 9 p.m., Sat from noon until 9 p.m. and Sun from noon until 8 p.m. Please remember that when coming in for takeout that a face cover is mandatory. For more information or to call in orders, Shawingz Baumholder, Smith Bks., Bldg. 8105, 5312833, 0611-143-531-2833. Shawingz Vogelweh, Vogelweh, Bldg. 2057, 489-7261, 06315-36-7261.

Photo courtesy of the Housing Office


April 17, 2020

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April 17, 2020

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COVID-19 operations: Connecting global communications

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Christopher Walker, 691st Cyberspace Operations Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of infrastructure management, discusses operations within his section at Ramstein Air Base, April 1. The 691st COS is responsible for network administration for all bases and geographically separated units within U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa command or theatre.

A vulnerability management sign hangs to signify the section inside the 691st Cyberspace Operations Squadron at Ramstein Air Base, April 1. Vulnerability management handles software patches, secures the network daily for mission-specific software and scans for vulnerabilities on the network.

Story & photos by Staff Sgt. Devin Nothstine 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs The 691st Cyberspace Operations Squadron provides the capability to practice physical distancing while maintaining mission success in response to the spread of coronavirus disease 2019. Airmen assigned to the 691st COS lead the way not only for U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa but also numerous bases globally. These Airmen have provided the ability to now stay connected at home to maintain mission readiness, responsiveness and resiliency for U.S. forces. “We don’t just support USAFE, we can support anybody worldwide,” said Lt. Col. Rebecca Russo, 691st COS commander. “Our [cyberspace operations] squadrons are spread out for a reason; to be globally focused and regionally placed.” The equipment and system currently in use is intended to afford select command and control positions access to the network, shared

U.S. Air Force Senior Airman Joshua Pobre, 691st Cyberspace Operations Squadron network management operator, reviews information on his computer at Ramstein Air Base, April 1. The 691st COS operates and defends the Air Force’s networks to advance the Air Force’s core mission sets.

drives and communication connectivity while working at an alternate duty location. However, 691st COS Airmen found an alternative, increasing the availability through virtual private networks for thou-

sands of members to telework. “Expanding this capability and using the equipment to its full capacity allows members to work from home, if needed, to limit the spread of COVID-19,” said Master

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U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Christopher Walker, 691st Cyberspace Operations Squadron noncommissioned officer in charge of infrastructure management, and Tech. Sgt. Catherine Bowden, 691st COS NCO in charge of boundary management, discuss current operations at Ramstein Air Base, April 1. Airmen assigned to the 691st COS increased the availability for thousands of members to telework through virtual private networks.

Sgt. Jerome Dyer, 691st COS network management section chief. These capabilities allow bases, such as the 86th Airlift Wing, to continue their mission and generate airlift while keeping the health of the force as a top priority. “We love our partnership here,” said Russo. “We are glob-

ally focused (with) a regional understanding of the importance of everything that USAFE brings to the fight in a moment’s notice.” The work that the Airmen at the 691st COS provide showcases the Air Force’s ability to quickly adapt to any situation, sustain mission readiness and protect its force.

Page 6 TIS from Page 1 REACH 725 was comprised of a full TIS force package, which includes one C-17 and aircrew carrying two TIS modules and medical support personnel, consisting of AE specialists, Critical Care Air Transport Team (CCATT) members, infectious diseases doctors and technicians, and TIS operators. Upon receipt of a warning order from U.S. Transportation Command April 8, the 618th Air Operations Center tasked a TIS-trained AMC aircrew and medical team at Ramstein Air Base to prepare to execute the mission within 24 hours. Drawn from multiple specialties and units from across the Air Force, these Airmen were pre-staged with a Joint Base Charleston C-17 and TIS at Ramstein’s 86th Airlift Wing in late March in anticipation of Joint Force, Allied and partner requirements in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Since arriving, these Airmen have trained to increase proficiency on the movement of infectious patients via the TIS. “Our unique capabilities paired with our strategic locations across the globe enable us to rapidly help those in need,” said Gen. Jeff Harrigian, commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa and NATO Allied Air Command. “Along with our allies and partners we stand united against a shared threat and stand ready to help when called.” Hours before the crew stepped to the C-17, Brig Gen Jimmy Canlas, 618th AOC commander, led a teleconference call in which he provided them with clear guidance in line with the recently released AMC COVID19 Patient Movement Plan.

Kaiserslautern American “Through the meticulous effort of AMC’s planners over the past few weeks, in coordination with U.S. Transportation Command, we’ve produced a detailed plan that guides our crews on how to safely and effectively move ill patients to a location where they can receive greater care, all while providing protection for our aircrew, medical personnel and aircraft,” said Canlas. “Within hours of completing and releasing this plan to the force, the crew of REACH 725 validated the hard work of these planners by safely transporting three COVID-19 patients nearly 4,000 miles from Afghanistan to Landstuhl.” Developed by AMC planners over the past few weeks, the PMP provides aircrew and support personnel a comprehensive and detailed process by which to transport patients aboard pressurized military aircraft, including patients afflicted with highly contagious diseases like COVID-19. “I’m exceptionally proud of our Airmen who executed this historic AE mission,” said Gen. Maryanne Miller, AMC commander. “REACH 725 is a great demonstration of AMC’s transition to a warfighting component command, with increased flexibility and speed enabling our Mobility Airmen to quickly answer any call for help during this global campaign to defeat COVID-19. Delivering hope runs deep in the blood of Mobility Airmen, and I’m in awe of what they are doing for those in need.”

April 17, 2020

A U.S. Air Force Airman assigned to the 721st Aerial Port Squadron marshals a C-17 Globemaster III aircraft transporting three COVID-19 patients from Afghanistan during the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10. The TIS is an infectious disease containment unit designed to minimize contamination risk to aircrew and medical attendants, while allowing in-flight medical care for patients afflicted by a disease — in this case, COVID-19. Photos by Staff Sgt. Devin Nothstine

Read more about the Transport Isolation System here: https://www.amc.af.mil/AboutUs/Fact-Sheets/Display/Article/2132917/ transport-isolation-system-tis/.

A U.S. Air Force medical Airman awaits patient documentation following the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10.

U.S. Air Force Airmen escort COVID-19 patients to a medical bus before transporting them to the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center during the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10.

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U.S. Air Force Airmen prepare to offload COVID-19 patients during the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10. The TIS is an infectious disease containment unit designed to minimize contamination risk to aircrew and medical attendants, while allowing in-flight medical care for patients afflicted by a disease — in this case, COVID-19.

U.S. Air Force Airmen unload medical equipment after transporting COVID-19 patients during the first-ever operational use of the Transport Isolation System at Ramstein Air Base, April 10.

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Braving the fire: Airman overcomes difficult childhood, finds joy

“I did not want to be in New York anymore,” Jerido said. “I had been through so much.” Her father, who had moved to Florida years prior, encouraged Jerido to leave New York and move in with him. “I needed to be brave, I needed to be strong and I needed to keep fighting because that’s the person I want to be in the long run,” she said. “I didn’t want to be someone that fails, I want to keep striving to be the best I can be.” Supported with her mother’s example of strength, she packed her things and moved to Tampa, Florida, in 2016, leaving behind a life she knew was no longer hers and joined her father. During this time, Jerido continued to pray for strength daily as she put all her faith in God. “I thank God every day for giving me the strength to keep going,” she said. “I had a rough childhood, but I don’t want to let it define me as a person. It is powerful to me to have conquered everything that I have without [turning] to drugs or alcohol or even worse, committing suicide. I know so many people (who) have been through trials and tribulations that I have and it resulted in suicide.” Jerido rebuilt her life as she worked two jobs, before setting her sights on the Air Force. Originally, firefighting wasn’t in the plan. Growing up, she had always wanted to become a police officer. “When I was younger all I wanted was someone to come to my house and protect me, or be there for me, or someone to talk to,” Jerido said. “I wanted to be that person to help me in the same situation that I was in.” Although her plans changed, Jerido found a sense of pride in her work as a firefighter.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Kayla Jerido, 86th Civil Engineer Squadron fire protection apprentice, poses for a photo at Vogelweh Military Complex, March 12. Jerido is a Southhampton, New York native whose difficult childhood led her toward a career in firefighting to better help people.

Story & photos by Staff Sgt. Nesha Humes Stanton 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs Everyone reacts differently when faced with danger. Some will freeze. Some will faint. Some will flee. But there are those few who will fight. At a very young age, Airman 1st Class Kayla Jerido discovered she was one of these few. Jerido is a fire protection apprentice assigned to the 86th Civil Engineer Squadron. Throughout her life, Jerido’s been described as the positive type, exhibiting a great energy for life. She has a contagious smile and a willpower fueled by optimism, which pours into her hard work on a daily basis. “Jerido is amazing because you know that no matter what is going on during the day or night, she handles any and all tasks with the same level-headed logic and energy,” said U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Matt Lester, 86th CES fire protection crew chief. “Her contributions to the unit have won her multiple awards. I am more than excited to see how far she goes in the Air Force and beyond with her work ethic and determination.” However, those who have heard the energetic 27-year-old’s journey are often taken by surprise. Growing up in Southampton, New York, Jerido faced a series of life changing events.

She was only 5 years old when she found her mom unresponsive by peering underneath a locked bathroom door. Her fight response kicked in as she sprinted to wake her father who then kicked down the door and called for help. “My mom had a stroke and aneurysm, and I ended up saving her life,” Jerido said. “This is really the reason I wanted to help people.” In the following years, Jerido and her grandparents were her mother’s caretakers since she lost all mobility on the right side of her body. Jerido also learned that her mother’s aneurysm was hereditary. Tomorrow is not guaranteed, a fact Jerido witnessed first-hand. “In a split second, it all changed,” she said. One moment her mother was beginning her career as a paramedic, and the next she couldn’t form words. Little did they know, at the time of the stroke, Jerido had a sibling on the way. “My mother was pregnant with my little brother,” she said. “He was born three months premature.” By 6 years old, Jerido fully understood her roles around the house: feed her brother, change his diapers; prepare meals; and care for her mother by tying her shoes and doing her hair. “I never really had that mother figure

April 17, 2020

since she couldn’t do a lot of what moms are supposed to do because of this serious thing that happened to her,” Jerido said. As her mother regained strength throughout the next 10 years by re-learning to walk, talk and reclaim her mobility, Jerido learned the power of fighting for something important. “My mom is an amazing person,” Jerido said with a grin. “She has fought to live. Whenever I think of giving up, I think of how she never gave up. My mom is very strong and I aspire every day to be just like her. She has pushed me to be the person I am today.” In addition to coping with the physical, mental and emotional toll of her mother’s disability, violence and drugs had surrounded her home. “I had a lot of people in my family that were into criminal activities,” Jerido said. “I didn’t want to be like some of my family members who chose drugs to cope with their problems.” What’s more, she carried an extreme burden she had been battling and concealing for years. “I was sexually abused from the time I was 5 until 19,” Jerido said. “My parents found out about it later on, when I was about 22. They had no idea.” With her pain revealed for everyone to see, Jerido searched for an opportunity to heal.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Kayla Jerido, 86th Civil Engineer Squadron fire protection apprentice, and her mother, Angei Jerido, smile for a photo at Cooper Beach, New York, Dec. 13, 2011. At a very young age, Jerido learned how to fight for what is important, after seeing her mother overcome a disability. Since then, Jerido credits her mother’s strength and her faith in God to have brought her through the toughest of times. Courtesy photo

Kaiserslautern American

April 17, 2020

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Kayla Jerido, 86th Civil Engineer Squadron fire protection apprentice, far right, poses with her classmates after graduating from the Louis F. Garland Department of Defense Fire Academy at Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas, Jan. 15, 2018. Jerido harnessed her willpower, a lesson she learned at a very young age, during her 68 days of firefighter training. Courtesy photo

“When I arrive at people’s houses, I’m arriving on one of their worst days; it makes me feel better knowing I can help,” she explained. In the summer of 2018, Jerido’s journey to become a firefighter began. After graduating from basic

military training, she went to formal training at the Louis F. Garland Department of Defense Fire Academy at Goodfellow Air Force Base, Texas. The training was arduous, often testing Airmen’s strength and willpower.

“A lot of people go into training thinking it was going to be easy,” she said. “When you go in with that mentality you find out really quickly who you are.” The first physical obstacle of fire protection training: crawling through a confined space with gear on. “I can’t lie, in the beginning I was like, ‘This is crazy, this thing is tight’ ... it was a little scary but the second time, it was a breeze. I got used to it.” During formal training, fire protection specialists study numerous skills such as emergency management, first aid techniques, fire scene evidence preservation, public relations fire prevention awareness, and fire and disaster environmental protection. “There aren’t a lot of us (women) in tech school, so when I had another female in my class, I wanted to motivate and help her get to the next level; she did the same for me,” she said. Often, some women felt discouraged because the physical tasks did not come as easy to them as their male classmates. However, Jerido and the other women pressed on, encouraging each other anyway. One of the challenging tasks included picking up a 150-pound dummy while wearing 70 pounds of equipment for the first time.

Page 9 “‘This thing is heavy!’” she recalled. “But it’s that willpower to know I can do this just like any other man can. That’s my mentality. I’m going to do this – and I’m going to do it well – because I want this job.” Jerido persevered through 68 days of training and graduated in January 2019. She went on to her first unit, the 86th CES, where she is currently one of five female firefighters in her 206-member unit. However, Jerido doesn’t want to be pigeonholed by her gender when called a ‘female firefighter’ but highlighted for her excellence. “I love the fact that I’m empowering women,” she explained. “There’re probably little girls that want to become firefighters. But, people have to understand that just because we’re female, doesn’t mean that we’re less than males. We’re all firefighters and we all want to do this job because we love helping people. We love learning and we want to grow.” For Jerido, her perseverance has paid off in the form of joy. “We went on a call and some kid randomly yelled, ‘We love you guys!’ and I was like, ‘I love you, too!’” she said. “He was just so happy that I spoke to him. The kids are so adorable when they see us. They don’t even know me from a can of paint, but they love me and I love them!”

Overall, Jerido’s joy for firefighting and her unit has allowed her to enter the happiest time of her life. “I love how much of a family we are,” she said. “We don’t always get along, just like a family, but the one thing I know is I can lean on these people like no other. I love my job so much and I love the people I work with.” Jerido’s internal drive to fight carried her through the toughest of times. Yet, just like her firefighter training, it shaped her into the person she is today. “I have nothing but God to thank for it,” she said. “God has gotten me to where I am today and I finally know what my purpose is in this world. I’m going to continue to find out what He has in store for me! “When people look at me, they don’t see someone that was sexually abused or that went through a hard childhood,” she said. “They only see A1C Jerido, always smiling.” Möbelspedition

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Change in routine, forced isolation can lead to depression, suicidal thoughts Story & graphic by Keith Pannell U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz When someone hears, reads or watches news about an outbreak of an infectious disease, like COVID-19, the amount of stress they feel can go off the charts, according to the Substance Abuse and Health Services Administration. The counselors of the U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz Army Substance Abuse Program whole-heartedly agree. Add to the 24-hour news cycle the unique conditions brought on from living overseas during a worldwide pandemic, and many employees working from home, experts say it’s not surprising depression and dark thoughts can set in. Kristin James, garrison ASAP chief, said someone working from home or homeschooling their children must understand the situation is not their fault. “We don’t have much control, if any, over the policies being implemented to control the spread of the virus. However, we can certainly control our own reaction to the situation,” James said. “Keeping the focus on what you control enhances your sense of empowerment. It’s also important to understand it is normal to feel stressed or anxious and it is healthy to verbalize your feelings and ask for help.” Unlike any other nationwide or worldwide crisis, James said we’re all just a keystroke

available via virtual or telephone counseling/ coaching. Military Family Life Counselors, Employee Assistance Program coordinators and personal financial counselors are here locally, ready to connect with any employee, family member or service member. “We have focused almost exclusively on the health and welfare of our Soldiers, Civilians and our families due to COVID-19,” said Col. Jason Edwards, garrison commander. “The same intensity should be maintained for suicide awareness. Above all we need to understand the signs and take the time to stay connected. This can be done virtually. Check in. Ask how your families, friends and teammates are doing. A simple interaction can make a difference.” away from each other. She advises anyone feeling themselves slipping into depression, missing their co-workers or feeling disconnected during social distancing should start tapping away, using the positive aspects of social media. “If an individual is currently in an administrative leave or telework status, there are still ways they can be a part of the community. If they have a skill or a talent to share with others, the garrison can use them to build virtual content for the community,” James said. “If nothing else, jot down the steps necessary to

help reopen your work center and how you will contribute to the community’s return to routine operations, when that happens.” Experts say during these uncertain times stress levels can become unbearable as information changes daily, due to many factors. Not to mention the added stress of increased workload on home life and work situations. The SAHSA says to acknowledge the added stress on daily life. Enlist help to learn or build upon existing coping, problemsolving and communication skills. There are many resources in the USAG RP community,

Anyone who feels like they need someone to talk to, hear a friendly voice or make an appointment with a life counselor can call 0162-774-2906 or 0162-251-8567. On-call chaplains are available to all members of the community in Kaiserslautern at 0162-296-9054 and in Baumholder at 0162-270-8348. Any military member, including Guard, Reserves and veterans who feel they may kill themselves, can call the Military/Veteran Crisis Line at 00800-1273-8255.

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Earth Day 2020: by 86th Civil Engineer Squadron Installation Management Flight “Building a sustainable society is the critical challenge of this century. Everything depends on it.” Senator Gaylord Nelson, Founder, Earth Day The idea for a national day to focus on the environment came to Earth Day founder Gaylord Nelson, a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin, after witnessing the ravages of a massive oil spill in Santa Barbara, California in 1969. More than 20 million Americans demonstrated for a healthy, sustainable environment in massive coast-tocoast rallies. The event was so successful, that in Dec. 1970 Congress authorized the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water and Endangered Species Acts. As a result, Americans began honoring Earth Day on April 22, every year. In 1990, Earth Day went global in 141 countries and the event continues to spread internationally. This year, more than 1 billion people in 192 countries worldwide will commemorate “Earth Day” (though likely, virtually). Earth Day goals: more than just spreading awareness! Small changes in our lifestyle can make a big difference. Everyone can do them without experiencing a significant reduction in quality of life. Sustainable consumerism promotes purchasing goods that are produced with the minimum amount of resources consumed in the production of those goods. Farmer’s markets require minimal resources in order to produce goods that provide benefits to the consumer. Did you know that many nearby cities, including Kaiserslautern, hold regular farmer’s markets? Even doing simple things like changing your conventional light bulbs to energy-saving bulbs, such as LED (light emitting diode) or CFL (compact fluorescent lamp) bulbs make a big difference. These bulbs are more efficient and use 80 percent less energy while lasting up to 10 times longer. Additionally, turning off electronics, or even unplugging them, will save both energy and money, as will washing your clothes at a lower temperature to reduce hot water bills. Do you need to use your car for short distances? Walking is healthy and your wallet will be grateful. Finally, did you know that for every degree Celsius less in room temperature, you will consume about 10% less energy? Again, this is a win/win situation for your wallet and for the environment.

Earth Day 2020 Theme: Climate Action The 2020 Earth Day theme is “Climate Action.” International bodies of scientists have warned that we have just over a decade to halve our emissions to avoid the most devastating impacts of climate change on our food supply, national security, global health, extreme weather and more.

April 17, 2020

Time t

In 1970, Cong the Environm the passage o Endangered Sp began honorin Courte Squadron Install

What you can do about climate change Get informed. Knowledge is power — learn more about the science behind our climate challenge and the responsibility that all sectors hold in addressing the issue. Hold yourself accountable. Consider offsetting carbon emissions by investing in clean and renewable energy projects around the world that support local communities, drive sustainable development and protect our planet. Unplug. Unplug items when they aren’t in use, buy goods with high energy-efficient standards, and consider making the switch to renewable energy. Travel smarter. Take public transit, bike, or walk when possible — it’s good for your health, your wallet and the planet. Climate action, one bite at a time. Research has revealed the tremendous impact that the mass production of meat, dairy, and eggs has on our planet. Enjoy more plant-based meals, reduce your food waste altogether, and compost your food scraps. Shop smarter. Support companies driven by sustainability and committed to transparency throughout the supply chain. Shop smarter with thoughtful purchasing to minimize waste. Consider reused and pre-loved items to take part in the circular economy and keep goods from our already overflowing landfills. For more environmental information, please contact the 86th Civil Engineer Squadron Installation Management Flight at 06371-47-5086/7712 or email us at 86ces.cea@us.af.mil. We are always ready and happy to support you and answer any environmental question or issue you may have.

The 86th Civil Engineer Squadron Installation Management Flight offers a fun way for kids to create a rainbow from used Engineer Squadron Installation Management Flight

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to think about mother Earth

gress authorized the creation of mental Protection Agency and of the Clean Air, Clean Water and pecies Acts. As a result, Americans ng Earth Day on April 22 every year. esy illustration by the 86th Civil Engineer lation Management Flight

d scraps from around the house. Photo by the 86th Civil There has been a surge in base utility usage. Use these tips to conserve electricity and water.

Photo by Jacob_09/Shutterstock.com

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April 17, 2020

Photo by ideldesign/Shutterstock.com

Using appliances in your German home

One of the things that is most common between your U.S. home and your new German living quarters is the fact that you have appliances to assist you with your everyday tasks. Whether it is doing the laundry or washing the dishes, appliances provide a nice break from manual labor, but that is where the similarities end. Plan for longer cycles If you have not already experienced the two-hour laundry cycle, be prepared for some extra time when washing your clothes. European appliances will take double (and sometimes longer) the time to run through the complete washing cycle than your units from the U.S. due to efficiency requirements. Although the time difference can be a little inconvenient, especially if you are doing a wash for a larger family, you may notice your clothes come out a little cleaner. The added bonus of the longer cycle means your clothes are soaked in water longer (and with less water used than the U.S. units) result-

ing in cleaner clothes. It allows your detergent to activate over time, which releases the enzymes (and not from a quick flash of hot water). Another reason for the longer cycle is the units only load cold water and they need time to heat. One more area of efficiency is the spin cycle. The speed of the spin is much faster, which wrings out more water and thus takes less time in the dryer. Don’t forget to turn off the water feed to your washer after each cycle (and don’t forget to turn it on before you start a load). Add salt to your dishwasher No, your dishwasher doesn’t need a little extra seasoning, but it

does need a little help to keep the system clean. Adding salt to your unit prevents the system from clogging up while softening the water. It is important to note that you do not just throw a dash of salt in the unit before you push start. You should refer to the manual of your unit, but if you don’t have one handy (you can always look online), you should look for a screw cap on the floor of your dishwasher. Dishwasher salt (sodium chloride) can easily be found in your grocery store or hardware store. Read the box for

instructions, but it usually needs to be added about once per month. Clean out hidden lint traps in EU dryers Your EU dryer is likely a dehumidifier disguised as a dryer. Often there is not a vent connected to your unit which means the moisture has to go somewhere. The water is sucked out of your clothes and trapped in a container (often under your dryer) that needs to be emptied after each use. What you might not know is there are hidden lint traps that need to be cleaned out to keep your dryer running like a top. The trap you are familiar with is the dry lint trap, which is easily visible when you open the door. The hidden wet lint trap is the one that can go unattended for months, resulting in poor

drying. It is usually located just above the water catch reservoir behind a panel that needs to be removed. The wet trap should be cleaned out every few uses. Check the manufacturer manual to get a detailed description of where your wet lint trap is located. Get a larger refrigerator from FMO Depending on what type of place you find to live in, you may come across the “college size fridge” in your kitchen. It can be quite common to find these small units in Europe, especially in apartments. If you want to give it the old “college try” and use the smaller fridge, more power to you. Just be ready to go to the store three or more times a week. This is normal protocol for Europeans, but Americans usually want to go once a week and be done with it. Your local FMO often has a nice medium-sized option that gives you enough capacity for your needs, but doesn’t take up your whole kitchen, as German kitchens can often be much smaller than those found in the U.S. Graphic by Maxx-Studio / Shutterstock.com

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April 17, 2020

COVID-19 ops:

Light, lean, lethal Story & photos by Staff Sgt. Devin Nothstine 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs The 435th Contingency Response Group conducted airborne operations to maintain proficiency and qualifications at Ramstein Air Base, April 7-8. The 435th CRG is the only contingency response force in the Air Force that maintains an airborne insertion capability. Adding such a vital capability to the U.S. Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa retinue requires CRG Airmen to maintain currency in training as well as remain ready, resilient Airmen who can execute the mission – anytime, anyplace. The medical team assigned to the 435th Contingency Response Support Squadron met with the paratroopers in the morning to ensure they were in good health in order to perform their airborne jumps. Independent Duty Medical Technicians provided a coronavirus disease 2019 preflight screening and briefed risk mitigation techniques prior to boarding the aircraft. “Our IDMTs are the front line of medical care for a majority of our missions and exercises,” said Capt. Talon Miner, 435th CRSS director of medical operations. “Our people are the reason we are able to do the things we do and why we are able to do them so well.” Proactive measures limited exposure and spread of COVID-19 while still allowing them to train. “We are taking extra precautions to mitigate the risk of COVID19 transmission during this global pandemic,” Miner said. “We work closely with several units including the 86th Medical Group and 37th Airlift Squadron to ensure we are all following the latest guidance to keep our members protected and healthy.” While COVID-19 is a threat, it must be treated just like any other threat: training will limit the degradation of Air Force’s readiness, responsiveness and lethality. The 435th CRG continues to take every step to ensure the wellness of their Airmen while also safeguarding their national mission capabilities. “There aren’t a lot of units that are jumping in the Air Force right

now,” said Maj. Doug Dinkins, 435th Security Forces Squadron commander. “We want to continue to execute these operations. That’s why we are going through extra precautions to ensure our members safety and health stay as a top priority.” Each Airman wore protective cloth masks, disposal rubber gloves and had a heightened awareness of the physical distancing regulations during training. The 435th CRG Airmen are on a 72-hour response time to answer any call which emphasizes the importance of their health. “We ensure our nation, partners, allies and those who would choose to be our adversary understand that it is impossible to deny the employment of airpower anywhere in this area of operation,” said Col. Jason Terry, 435th CRG commander. Airborne operations provide combatant commanders added flexibility when they request assistance to open an airbase in uncertain austere environments. “The team of airborne qualified Airmen can drop into an airfield and then rapidly assess it for aircraft suitability,” said Master Sgt. Jim Burke, 435th Contingency Response Squadron operations superintendent. “Operations like these demonstrate the continued readiness of the 435th CRG and remind all parties that we still have the ability to insert paratroopers into any place at any time – even during a global pandemic.” Military freefall requires a skill set which can diminish if it’s not continually practiced, Burke added. The jumps allow paratroopers to assess and hone their skillsets while under canopy and control parachute landing fall procedures. A lot of coordination goes into planning airborne training opportunities. The 37th AS and 86th Operational Support Squadron compliment this training by partnering with the CRG to provide airlift for proficiency jumps over Ramstein Air Base. “Leveraging partnerships is of critical importance to the 435th CRG,” said Maj. Brad Seehawer, 435th CRS operations officer. “These jumps are a direct reflec-

tion of the outstanding support we’ve received from the 37th Airlift Squadron, 86th Operations Support Squadron, 721st Air Mobility Operations Group, and 5th Quartermaster Theater Aerial Delivery Company. We wouldn’t be able to be who we are without the support they provide.” The CRG diligently works to find “a way to get a yes” to continue training during difficult times for their units; and for good reason. “Airborne members must make at least one exit out of a high-performance aircraft to stay qualified,” said Staff Sgt. Mark Melchiori, 435th SFS jump master. “Wearing masks, keeping a 6-foot physical distance and following the extra precautions doesn’t change the way we train but adds another level of safety.” It’s vitally important the CRG conduct these operations so they can continually provide expeditionary airfields on demand with agility and lethality. “Every unit in the Air Force can take on a difficult task, but the impossible tasks are reserved for the light, lean and lethal Airmen of the CRG,” said Chief Master Sgt. Carey Jordan, 435th CRG superintendent. Together, the military will adapt to combat any threat. The COVID19 pandemic is no different. The safety precautions were put into place to relieve any stressors caused by this global threat and to protect the health of the community. The U.S. Air Force remains committed to rapid, global mobility in order to safeguard and preserve U.S. national interests as well as the interests of its allies and partners.

A U.S. Air Force Airman assigned to the 435th Contingency Response Group controls descent during airborne operations at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. Prior to every jump, Airmen recite parachute procedures, practice parachute landing falls and prepare static line pre-jump tactics to boost the level of confidence for the paratrooper. The 435th CRG’s capability to conduct jumps provides a unique skillset to U.S. Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyle Lock, 435th Security Forces Squadron team member, prepares to board a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. Lock is wearing a cloth mask and gloves to prevent the transmission of coronavirus disease 2019 while executing current operations. Bottom: U.S. Air Force Airmen assigned to the 435th Contingency Response Group conduct static line training at Rhine Ordnance Barracks, Kaiserslautern, April 7. The 435th Contingency Response Support Squadron provided each paratrooper a prescreening, risk management techniques and community protective measures such as cloth masks and disposable gloves to mitigate the risk of coronavirus disease 2019 transmission.

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Photo by WAYHOME studio/Shutterstock.com

Hiking and biking apps

by Ronnie Juhans contributing writer As an old-school outdoor adventure guide, I am used to leading hiking and biking adventures throughout Europe based on knowledge of the trails, terrain, points of interest, rest stops, and evacuation routes in the event of an injury or medical emergency. However, not everyone wants to pay for a guide and be led around all day without being able to explore on their own. You are the risk takers, adventurers, and explorers who stumble upon hidden caves, rock formations, wildlife eco-systems, and quiet places to get away from civilization for a few hours. It seems like only a few years ago that handheld GPS units were introduced, which offered options such as a compass, viewing your coordinates, tracking your steps, marking waypoints to get you back on track, and geocaching. That was a great device. However, the options were limited and it became obsolete for modern-day exploration. Hiking and biking apps that can be downloaded to your phone are the way to go when it comes to planning your adventures and having peace of mind while out in the middle of nowhere. Don’t leave home without your trusty smartphone. It’s an essential piece of survival gear. But only if you know what apps to preload and have enough backup battery power. I have downloaded and used a variety of hiking and biking apps that give a detailed description of available options. Too much information and time-consuming thumb use is the reason that I narrowed down the following apps that allow you to spend more time on the trail, and less time navigating your outdoor experience via technology.

Maps 3D Pro I found this app to be a great tool for all-season outdoor adventurers. You can record trails and use them offline if you have no connection while in remote locations. You can also see your surroundings in 3D so that you know your elevation. Great for biking, hiking, and navigating your way through city streets, as well as a variety of winter sports. The only drawback for me is that the search function is not on the main screen. Although it’s only a menu below I don’t like stopping and having to figure out how to find an option especially if there is an emergency in the field. Maps 3D PRO is a 22MB download, but data requirements grow as you download those detailed maps. Map My Hike Map My Hike is another GPS mapping app that tracks your route and distance. You can also connect with friends, compete with them, and get feedback on your progress. A great app to track your progress during your outdoor adventures. Audio feedback, choosing different sports, saving favorite paths, and tracking your pace, distance, duration, calories burned, and setting personal goals are also notable features. However, there are a lot of discrepancies when it comes to distance traveled, time, location, and more. I have been using GPS devices for years and know that you get different feedback based on your surroundings and losing signals. However, when I put this app to the test by hiking the same trail three times with friends who had different phones and using Android and iPhone versions of Map My Hike, we were not too impressed while comparing data. This could be a great app if a little more work can be done by getting out in the field with groups and seeing reality.

All Trails All Trails is packed with over 50,000 maps, reviews, and photos for hikers and bikers. You can also find trails that are a dog, kid, and wheelchair friendly. You can also check out ratings, photos, share adventures with friends on social media, and track your progress, download maps to review offline, and more. One of my favorite options are the filters that let you quickly narrow down the trails that you are interested in or capable of trekking if there are many in your area. The accuracy is great, and the app is easy to use. In addition to the aforementioned features, you can subscribe to All Trails Pro, which gives you access to a variety of National Geographic information on maps, trails, and routes that have been tested and reviewed by outdoor adventurers from all over the world. View Ranger View Ranger is an amazing app that allows you to search for trails and maps with very little effort. A must for creating your own daytime or weeklong adventure that takes you from home, a campsite, or start points from a parking lot or train station. After two years of trial and error and trying out an extensive list of hiking and biking apps, View Ranger is my number one pick. View Ranger Buddy Beacon (internet connection required) allows you to share your actual location with friends and family via phone and computer. This option allows others to know your last location if contact was lost with you, there is an emergency, and where to dispatch a rescue team. It also provides you with a PIN protection so that only certain people know who you are and where you are. Other features include Go Anywhere that works offline with-

out mobile and data signals. Worldwide Maps that include streets, aerial, satellite images, Topographic as well as a Skyline feature to pan the landscape using your phone camera. No need to have a separate GPS device to see your location on a map, record tracks, go to points of interest, and track time, speed, bearing, sunrise, and sunset because View Ranger handles those tasks faster and more accurate. If you want to track your workouts such as steps, heart rate and

more, the View Ranger allows you to transfer your data to Apple Health and other high-tech fitness apps. These are a few of the many View Ranger features available with this hiking and biking app that is my favorite when it comes to exploring areas nearby or while traveling around Europe. Instead of making a choice based on my reviews, take the time to search for more apps, and find out what suits your needs instead of paying for a bunch of mind-cluttering, battery-draining options that you will never use. Be sure to also check out system requirements. Prices to download vary on options as well as one time or monthly fees. Go to Apple App Store, Google Play, and Amazon for the best information. Most apps will let you figure out your needs with free trials. Author’s Profile: Ron Juhans has spent many years traveling around the world guiding and teaching outdoor adventure skills in the United States, Europe, and Asia while being on active duty for over 21 years in the Army. As a youth counselor, he planned and led over 150 weeklong adventure camps for Outdoor Recreation and Youth Programs in the KMC area which received numerous accolades and articles in the Kaiserslautern American, and Stars And Stripes.

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April 17, 2020

E/5-7 ADAR win Deployed Excellence Small Unit Award by Cpt. LaPortia London 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Public Affairs Soldiers and senior leaders of Echo Company, 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Regiment have continually proven to be a multifaceted, diverse and strategic unit within the 10th Army Air & Missile Defense Command footprint. On April 2, the company was awarded the 2019 Department of the Army Deployment Excellence Award for

the “Deploying Small Active” category. U.S. Army Cpt. Harry Cambrelen, former commander of E Co, 5-7 ADAR, said they have competed for and won multiple maintenance and deployment awards during the last five years due to his soldiers outstanding accomplishments which exceeded Army deployment standards. “During Summer Fighting Season 2019, Echo Company was responsible for the preparation of

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Spc. Paul Eric Castro, a wheeled vehicle repairer assigned to Echo Company, 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, fires an M240B machine gun during Echo Company’s first convoy live fire exercise at Range 27 Smith Barracks, Germany on Oct. 27, 2019. On April 2 the company was awarded the 2019 Department of the Army Deployment Excellence Award for the “Deploying Small Active” category. Photo by Spc. Dtorrion Ross

the battalion’s equipment in addition to their own,” Cambrelen said. “The company initially prioritized equipment being transported to Romania to meet the rail-load timeline in support of Saber Guardian ’19. The unit also supported Astral Knight ’19 that tested the unit’s flexibility and proficiency by executing operations simultaneously in Romania and Slovenia performing split-based operations.” Cambrelen said that Echo Company has a total of 27 different military jobs or occupational specialties (MOS)s within its organization. “Soldiers are constantly afforded the opportunity to receive hands-on training within their MOS making them experts within that field which directly has an impact on the battalion’s ability to champion readiness and execute all operations with

minimal to no issues,” he said. U.S. Army 1st Lt. Braden Farley, executive officer, E Co., 5-7 ADAR, said that Echo Company not only achieves greatness during multinational and battalion-level field exercises and missions but also during daily operations. “We are consistently sought after to prepare the battalion and posture us for the most lethal and war fighting capabilities with ability to deploy within 72 hours,” Farley said. “Our technical expertise of our leaders and Soldiers in the maintenance and logistical field makes us the diverse company that we are today. We continue to support the battalion through weapons repair, AC and generator services, rolling stock repair and supplying the unit with Class II and IX (equipment and repair parts).” The key is to continue to moti-

vate soldiers to excel and stand out, said U.S. Army 1st Sgt. Matthew A. Kiefer, E Co. first sergeant. “The key contributor to why Echo is able to achieve the results we have is due to not letting the efforts that are put in go unnoticed,” he said. “Each month, the platoon leadership nominates a “Spartan of the Month” where the winner receives a three-day weekend of their choice. We also continuously recognize our Soldiers through impact achievement awards. We also extend our reach to our German foreign allies and conduct multiple partnership ranges a year where Soldiers across the battalion are afforded the opportunity to receive the German marksmanship Badge, known as the Schutzenschnur. These awards help motivate and push the Soldiers to give their best effort each and every day.”

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Echo Company, 5th Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery Regiment stage vehicles in the lower 5-7 ADAR motor pool at Smith Barracks, Germany in preparation of convoy operations to Slovenia May 25, 2019. On April 2, 2020, the company was awarded the 2019 Department of the Army Deployment Excellence Award for the “Deploying Small Active” category. Photo by Spc. Dtorrion Ross

Kaiserslautern American

April 17, 2020

Page 19

Smell of success helps Team Clean wipe out COVID-19 by Jason Tudor U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz Public Affairs For this team, success is a smell. It’s the pinch of pungent bleach wafting into the nostrils, a crisp, waking scent many have known since childhood from watching parents scrub floors, scour sinks, and wash clothes. It’s the gleam of a freshly wiped keyboard, the feel of a high-touch surface. It’s the confidence of returning to a workspace where one sniff can tell the story of effective prevention. Instilling that kind of confidence falls to U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz’s newly formed “Team Clean,” a motley group of troops pulled from units across the garrison assigned to clean workspaces of people who have tested positive for COVID-19. Team Clean deploys in three units — North, Central, and East — covering 29 sites across a 1,400-square-mile footprint. The team is one of a multitude of COVID-19 prevention measures the garrison has in place to trace, prevent and mitigate the spread of the virus. Paper towels, spray bottles, mops, buckets and sponges are drawn as weapons against the potential lingering virus. Their armor is the personal protective equipment appropriate for their task. Suited up like a crew rocketing into space to save Earth from a hurtling asteroid, Team Clean’s job is crucial, according to its leader. “They not only mitigate the potential of virus spread, they also provide some level of peace of mind to the people who work

in the areas where we work,” said John O’Brien, who also serves as chief of the Plans, Analysis and Integration Office for the garrison. From idea to action, Team Clean’s formation happened in 14 days. Environmental health pros provided training in how to identify the threat — and wiping it down thoroughly. That might include cleaning mattresses and washing blankets as well as washing all walls, blinds, and windows. The work also means wiping counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, and phones. And because this is the Army, there’s a technique to doing all this that resembles close-quarters combat tactics: “Back Wall to Door,” “First Sweep: Ceiling and Lights,” and “Second Sweep: Walls, Windows, Hard Surfaces,” are just some of the terms used during team members’ 30-minute indoctrination. The effort didn’t get rolling without challenges, specifically finding resources to perform the work. With an already strained supply chain because of demand for cleaning products and sterilization materials, O’Brien said he eventually turned to the local economy. “If we didn’t get creative in our approach, we would still be waiting on PPE,” O’Brien admitted, also noting that supplies are no longer an issue. Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth Hawkins of 10th Army Air and Missile Defense Command is the lead NCO for Team Clean Central, organizing activities for the three region-

al groups. Team Clean draws its labor from units across the garrison. So far, teams of about a half-dozen people have deployed three times and have been eager to help. Defense Finance and Accounting Service-Europe is one of Team Clean’s most recent clients, with Soldiers from the 10th AAMDC comprising the bulk of the cadre. DFAS-Europe’s director Tim Kuhl commended the team for its fast and meticulous work. “The speed of the Task Force Team Clean response and quality of work performed by the Soldiers was truly phenomenal,” Kuhl said. “We cannot thank all of them enough!” Garrison Commander Col. Jason T. Edwards said Team Clean’s role in combatting COVID19 is vital. “Members of the team are on the front lines of prevention doing unheralded work to keep the people using garrison resources safe. I’m proud of everyone who makes up Team Clean as well as our other prevention components who have stepped up to this challenge and excelled,” Edwards said. Performing this kind of downin-the-weeds work is not unfamiliar to the troops helping achieve the smell of success, and Hawkins is confident they will continue to have success as the crisis continues. “We have all had a moderate amount of experience performing the duties of a custodial engineer throughout our careers,” Hawkins said, “and remain confident we can achieve the desired effects.”

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Kaiserslautern American

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April 17, 2020

Rock spotting trends on Ramstein

The Gentry family paints rocks to place around their community and bring joy at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. Isolation is a challenge for many during coronavirus disease 2019 precautions. By starting a community that paints rocks and places them along walkways, the Gentrys found a way to connect with people while still maintaining physical distancing.

by Senior Airman Elizabeth Baker 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs A rock has been placed in the woods for others to find at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. Ramstein Rocks is an online group that helps keep families entertained and connected while maintaining physical distancing precautions. Adults and children enjoy decorating rocks and hiding them along walkways throughout Ramstein housing for others to find.

The Gentry family’s painted rocks are placed to bring joy to the community at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. The Gentrys paint and place rocks along walkways to give families something to look for and get excited about while out walking. Many other families have joined in and added their rocks, showing unity while still maintaining physical distancing.


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Danyelle Gentry, left, Ramstein Elementary School front office assistant, and her husband, Master Sgt. Garett Gentry, 786th Civil Engineer Squadron section chief, paint rocks to place around the community at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. When coronavirus disease 2019 prompted the need for isolation on base, the Gentrys began painting and placing rocks around Ramstein housing walkways. Adults and children enjoyed finding the rocks and joined in making them; currently, there are more than 150 members of the online Ramstein Rocks group.

Gavin Gentry, Ramstein Elementary School student, places a painted rock to bring joy to those who find it at Ramstein Air Base, April 7. Approximately 150 members have joined the online Ramstein Rocks group, which started the trend of decorating and placing rocks around Ramstein housing. At a time when families are adhering to coronavirus disease 2019 physical distancing precautions and children are not able to play with friends in a typical manner, rock decorating and hunting provide joy and entertainment.

Kaiserslautern American

COVID-19 anxiety? 86th MDOS offers cognitive tools Story & graphic by Staff Sgt. Nesha Humes Stanton 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs As the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic sets in, teleworking, homeschooling and self-isolation present numerous new obstacles. Therefore, it’s crucial to identify when stress becomes too much and begins to push into the realm of anxiety or depression. As an added means to cope with pandemic-induced stressors, the 86th Medical Operations Squadron (MDOS) primary care behavioral health (PCBH) is here to help put Kaiserslautern Military Community members’ minds at peace. Akin to seeing a physician when physical pain or discomfort needs attention, the PCBH team works with patients on revamping their internal thought processes, which helps mitigate irrational thinking, which can trigger anxiety or depression. “Unmanaged stress can impact our body and our general wellbeing,” said Stephanie Evans, Ph.D., 86th MDOS PCBH provider. “Stressors are unavoidable and they are a part of life. It comes down to how we manage these stressors. The more that we see these stressors, or manage them in a healthy adaptable way, the more empowered we feel. That really helps our sense of resilience and our wellness.”

During a PCBH session, individuals learn to build adaptive resilience against negative effects accompanying their stress, similar to an athlete building strength when training for a sport. “(COVID-19) is a new stressor and it’s taken a lot from our stress resources,” Evans said. “Before, people had a balance or a formula of how they managed (their stressors). Now (our routines) have to adapt or change in a lot of different ways. If you desire external help to brainstorm what strategies are beneficial and what ways to start incorporating them into your routine, that’s exactly what PCBH is here for.” Evans, a clinical psychologist by trade, utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to realign thinking patterns and identify “thinking errors,” also known as cognitive distortions, in order to cope with daily stressors or any fear surrounding COVID-19. “Most of the time we assume our thoughts to be true, so we don’t question them,” she said. “A lot of times this occurs almost automatically for us. The ultimate goal is to bring awareness that (these thinking errors are) occurring.” The truth is, everyone has cognitive distortions; some people have them more than most, and more often, everyone’s patterns are unique.


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April 17, 2020

Additionally, CBT has mountains of research verifying its effectiveness to overcome mental health issues. “Everything I do is either cognitive or behavioral intervention,” Evans explained. “We’re here to serve and better support primary care managers.” Some other areas the PCBH team provides brief interventions for are: anger, sleep, weight loss, chronic pain and erectile dysfunction. Unlike full-form psychotherapy which is primarily used at the 86th Medical Group (MDG) mental health clinic, the PCBH team’s instruction revolves around CBT. In place of in-person consultations during health protection condition Charlie, the PCBH team administers appointments via telephone. “I think everyone deserves to live the best life possible,” Evans said. “Our purpose is to help figure out those strategies and figure out how to implement them in your life. We’re here to help you.” No referral is needed to book an appointment and services are available to all Airmen, dependents and retirees enrolled at the 86th MDG. To schedule an appointment call Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., at DSN 479-2273 or commercial 049-6371-46-2273.

The 86th Medical Operations Squadron primary care behavioral health (PCBH) is here to help put Kaiserslautern Military Community members’ minds at peace. The PCBH team utilizes cognitive behavioral therapy to realign patients’ thinking patterns and identify “thinking errors,” in order to help cope with daily stressors or any fear surrounding COVID-19.

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April 17, 2020


Photo by repbone / Shutterstock.com

classics! These are just a few — Now’s the time to stream or rent some of the all-timfore availabil ity.

Part 4

Check your streaming service



Poster by Warner Bros.

Dennis the Menace (1993) When his parents have to go out of town, Dennis stays with Mr. and Mrs. Wilson. The little menace is driving Mr. Wilson crazy, but Dennis is just trying to be helpful. Even to the thief who’s arrived in town. Stars: Walter Matthau, Mason Gamble, Joan Plowright Director: Nick Castle

Poster by Walt Disney Animation Studios

The Emperor’s New Groove (2000) Emperor Kuzco is turned into a llama by his ex-administrator Yzma, and must now regain his throne with the help of Pacha, the gentle llama herder. Stars: David Spade, John Goodman, Eartha Kitt Director: Mark Dindal



Poster by Paramount Pictures


Poster by Miramax

Poster by Illumination Entertainment

The Odd Couple (1968)

Despicable Me (2010)

Chocolat (2000)

Two friends try sharing an apartment, but their ideas of housekeeping and lifestyles are as different as night and day. Stars: Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, John Fiedler Director: Gene Saks

When a criminal mastermind uses a trio of orphan girls as pawns for a grand scheme, he finds their love is profoundly changing him for the better. Stars: Steve Carell, Jason Segel, Russell Brand Directors: Pierre Coffin, Chris Renaud

A woman and her daughter open a chocolate shop in a small French village that shakes up the rigid morality of the community. Stars: Juliette Binoche, Judi Dench, Alfred Molina, Johnny Depp Director: Lasse Hallström






Poster by Gramercy Pictures

The Usual Suspects (1995) Poster by Warner Bros.

Poster by Warner Bros.

Bullitt (1968)

GoodFellas (1990)

An all guts, no glory San Francisco cop becomes determined to find the underworld kingpin that killed the witness in his protection. Stars: Steve McQueen, Jacqueline Bisset, Robert Vaughn, Don Gordon Director: Peter Yates

The story of Henry Hill and his life in the mob, covering his relationship with his wife Karen Hill and his mob partners Jimmy Conway and Tommy DeVito in the Italian-American crime syndicate. Stars: Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci Director: Martin Scorsese

A sole survivor tells of the twisty events leading up to a horrific gun battle on a boat, which began when five criminals met at a seemingly random police lineup. Stars: Kevin Spacey, Gabriel Byrne, Chazz Palminteri Director: Bryan Singer

Poster by Warner Bros.

Poster by DreamWorks Distribution

The Green Mile (1999)

Road to Perdition (2002)

The lives of guards on Death Row are affected by one of their charges: a black man accused of child murder and rape, yet who has a mysterious gift. Stars: Tom Hanks, Michael Clarke Duncan, David Morse Director: Frank Darabont

A mob enforcer’s son witnesses a murder, forcing him and his father to take to the road, and his father down a path of redemption and revenge. Stars: Tom Hanks, Tyler Hoechlin, Rob Maxey Director: Sam Mendes


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April 17, 2020

Kaiserslautern American

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