372nd TRS, Det 25: Service before self

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Kenneth Shinn
  • 372nd Training Squadron

Located 180 miles south of the Arctic Circle, Eielson Air Force Base is home to the 372nd Training Squadron’s Detachment 25.  Det 25 is responsible for providing the 354th Fighter Wing with the highest quality instruction in both maintenance technical training for the F-16 aircraft as well as faculty development training, even when it is -50 degrees Fahrenheit.  With 26 different advanced training courses in five different AFSCs, spread between five personnel, Det 25 may be one of the 372nd’s smallest detachments but they have a massive impact on Eielson AFB and Red Flag Alaska. 

The mission for Det 25 has evolved over the years in order to adapt to the needs of the 354 FW.  In its early years, Det 25 was teaching both A-10 and F-16 aircraft technical training, being reduced down to only F-16s with the departure of the A-10s in 2007.  Now that Eielson AFB is slated to be the first base outside the contiguous United States to receive the F-35, Det 25’s mission will again change as they begin to make preparations for the arrival of the Air Force’s newest fighter.  Master Sgt. Jesse Wiseman is the Detachment Chief for Det 25 and is heavily involved in the planning phase for the 2020 standup of the F-35 program.  “As we gear up for the arrival of the F-35, the det will increase in size going from 5 to over 30 personnel.  Currently we are a small detachment that is making a big difference in the further education and training of maintainers for the F-16, but soon we will play vital role in the training of F-35 maintainers,” states Wiseman. 

This fiscal year, Det 25 has taught 34 courses, providing 2,880 hours of instruction, and graduating 109 students awarding 395 CCAF credits.  The students that pass through Det 25 utilize their training to help facilitate amazing feats during Red Flag Alaska with international participation from Japan, Singapore, India, Canada and NATO forces so far this year alone.  By receiving their training, these maintainers are able to keep the F-16 aggressors flying.  The F-16 aggressors play a very important role in these war games as simulated enemy aircraft and ultimately strengthen the war capabilities of U.S and our allied forces.

Members at Det 25 know the value of cause and effect, understanding that every opportunity to extend themselves and their knowledge is chance to make a positive impact on the base and throughout the community.  Master Sgt. Wiseman has created an environment where “service” is always at the forefront of his instructors’ minds.  As Wiseman says, “At Det 25 we are all reaching out to be involved in areas around the base where we can use our professionalism and experience to help educate others. We understand that our usefulness and effectiveness are only limited by how much we are willing to give. This is why we have fostered a mentality of selflessness and why our total impact expands well beyond the confines of formal teaching hours.”

Furthermore, the constant push for excellence and the continuous involvement in activities has made the instructors of Det 25 not only ambassadors for the Air Force but also for Air Education Training Command.  Being involved as JrROTC mentors, active participants in 5/6 and Top 3, as well as instructors for the Tobacco Cessation Program, Green Dot training facilitators and having two Master Resiliency Trainers for the base, these members exceed every expectation of “service before self” by redefining what a detachment can do.