The U.S. Air Force Air Mobility Command aircrews flying C-5M Super Galaxy and C-17 Globemaster III aircraft delivered approximately 450 Soldiers and more than 30 pieces of equipment and vehicles during a U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) Emergency Deployment Readiness Exercise on July 6-7 in Wisconsin. The crews flew their missions to Volk Field, Wis., which is located approximately 20 miles south of Fort McCoy. Approximately 700 Soldiers with the Army’s 10th Mountain Division made the trip to Wisconsin from Fort Polk, La., to complete FORSCOM training objectives. After the equipment and personnel arrived, the operations for the exercise moved to Fort McCoy.
According to FORSCOM, the Emergency Deployment Readiness Exercise, or EDRE, by definition is a no-notice, rapid-deployment exercise designed to test a unit’s ability to alert, marshal, and deploy forces and equipment to an emergency disaster or for contingency operations. An EDRE also tests the deployment readiness of active-component troops â€” in this case, the 10th Mountain Division. The use of the Air Mobility Command (AMC) airlift aircraft also is a common practice for rapid deployment of forces, FORSCOM guidance states. In this exercise, C-17 aircraft came from Charleston Air Force Base (AFB), S.C., and C-5M aircraft from Dover AFB, Del., were involved.
Both the C-17 and C-5M provide a lot of airlift capabilities, according AMC’s fact sheets on both airframes. The C-5M Super Galaxy is a strategic transport aircraft and is the largest aircraft in the Air Force inventory. Its primary mission is to transport cargo and personnel for the Department of Defense. The C-5M is a modernized version of the legacy C-5 designed and manufactured by Lockheed Martin. The C-5M, with a cargo load of 281,001 pounds (127,460 kilograms), can fly 2,150 nautical miles, offload, and fly to a second base 500 nautical miles away from the original destination â€” all without aerial refueling.
The U.S. Air Force involvement demonstrates an ongoing partnership the installation has with the service as well as Volk Field. The Wisconsin Air National Guard airfield has been involved in supporting Fort McCoy missions for decades â€” including deploying and flying mobilized Army units during the global war on terrorism and during Operation Desert Shield/Storm. The EDRE involvement overall was also part of the level III mobilization exercise Pershing Strike ’21 taking place at Fort McCoy. The exercise included the EDRE, two units preparing and training for deployment, and additional units completing training to “stress” Mobilization Force Generation Installation (MFGI) capabilities.