Angel Thunder Underway

Billed as the world’s largest personnel recovery and combat search and rescue exercise, the two-week-long Angel Thunder ’08 kicked off last week and runs through Friday at Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz. Participating in the exercise are more than 850 ground recovery forces and 51 aircraft from military and other agencies. The CSAR-generated exercise, said Maj. Brett Hartnett, Angel Thunder project officer, “helps to eliminate the idea that personnel recovery can be done independent of other agencies, because from experience, we know that each service and government agency must work together to make successful recoveries at home and abroad.” Forces from Chile, Colombia, and Germany are working alongside US personnel. MSgt. Chad Watts, superintendent of combat survival training at the US Air Force Academy, which provided some of the volunteers to serve as survivors, said, “Everybody has their own tactics, techniques, and procedures and having everybody come together allows us to work through some of the communication differences, and allows us to share lessons learned with each other.” (Davis-Monthan report by TSgt. Kerry Jackson)