153rd civil engineers lend local fire district a hand

Senior Airman Autumn Velez, 153rd Aiftlift Wing Public Affairs Office

As traditional Air National Guard members, it can be difficult to find projects that afford the opportunity to master a trade. Recently, the ideal project landed in the laps of the civil engineer squadron thanks to a community partnership.

The 153rd Civil Engineer Squadron fire protection flight has had a working relationship with Laramie County Fire District #2. When the fire district needed some assistance with preparing their fire training structure for the upcoming Honoring Tradition, Leading Change Conference, the fire protection flight knew exactly which direction to point them.

“We have a close working relationship with the Wyoming Air National Guard Fire Department, so when we needed help, they extended our relationship to the rest of the Civil Engineer Squadron” said Manna Muzquiz, Laramie County District #2 operations chief.

To prepare for the conference, the 153rd CES was asked to install walls to create various rooms and add a fire suppression system within the district’s training structure. This project provided the water and fuels systems maintenance flight and the structural flight airmen a chance to practice what they learned during technical training.

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“This is great training,” said Staff Sgt. James Hanna, 153rd CES water and fuels system maintenance craftsman. “You can see things in career development courses, but this hands-on experience really puts it into prospective.”

The project included framing and installing dry wall as well as cutting, threading and installing pipe for the fire suppression system.

While this project was a learning opportunity, it also benefits the flight, as they will be participating in the conference. During the conference, the structure and its newly built fire suppression system and rooms will be used to teach 153rd firefighters and other regional firefighters how to stay safe and effectively extinguish structural fires based on advancements in the fire protection community.

In the future, Tech. Sgt. Richard Boyd, 153rd CES noncommissioned officer in charge of water and fuels system maintenance, hopes to continue partnering with the local community to give civil engineer airmen opportunities to become competent in their career fields.

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