Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Dec. 11, 2017

Wolf Pack Completes Pen-wide VIGILANT ACE 18

By Senior Airman Colby L. Hardin 8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

KUNSAN AIR BASE, Republic of Korea -- The 8th Fighter Wing at Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, completed its participation in the regularly-scheduled, joint-force training exercise, VIGILANT ACE 18, on Dec. 8, 2017, with members from Hill Air Force Base, Utah.

VIGILANT ACE was a week-long training exercise featuring U.S. personnel working alongside members of the ROK Air Force at eight U.S. and ROK military installations.

VIGILANT ACE was a week-long training exercise featuring U.S. personnel working alongside members of the ROK Air Force at eight U.S. and ROK military installations.

This year, the Wolf Pack, with its contingent of F-16C Fighting Falcons, worked alongside six F-35A Lightning IIs from the 34th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron, which is currently forward deployed to Kadena AB, Japan from Hill AFB, along with other U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine aircraft.

This marked the first time fifth-generation fighter aircraft participated in the training exercise on the Korean Peninsula.

“Like all of our readiness exercises, we really honed our ability to develop comprehensive, cross-functional, wing-wide solutions to difficult scenarios, as a wing,” said Col. David Shoemaker, 8th FW commander. “What’s unique about VIGILANT ACE, is that we are not only looking at how we do this a Kunsan, but also with our Korean partners and other U.S. units in the region. It’s through this train how you fight mentality that we test our readiness, identify strengths and weakness, and continually evolve our combat forces.”

As with previous years, VIGILANT ACE 18 emphasized the need for integrated combat training with ROKAF and U.S. Air Force Airmen. Additionally, like each readiness exercise, the scenarios evolved to incorporate the latest tactics, techniques, procedures and the latest technology; thus this year’s involvement of the twin-tailed Lightning IIs.
“This is a great opportunity for some of our younger pilots to fly with our more experienced guys, as well as join in with the Wolf Pack and the rest of the air assets out here participating in VIGILANT ACE,” said Lt Col Dave DeAngelis, 466th FS commander. “Having the F-35 here on peninsula during this exercise, which is intended to test the combined air picture, validates our ability to jump into the fight at a moment’s notice and support forces in the region.”
Although the U.S. and ROK Air Forces come together for training multiple times a year, this exercise brought a different type of atmosphere.

“This was my third exercise as the Emergency Operations Center Manager,” said Capt. Alexander Graboski, 8th Readiness and Emergency Management Flight commander. “Compared to previous exercises, this one was very unique since we got to see all the flying operations from across the Peninsula come together and work towards a common goal of defending the peninsula.”

Launching and ensuring the ability to launch aircraft wasn’t the only training accomplished this past week. As exercise and real challenges presented themselves during VIGLANT ACE, the base leadership worked through various scenarios to ensure relevant and safe training.
“It’s important we train in these types of settings, because it gives us a chance to step back and approach a potential wartime scenario in a controlled environment,” said Shoemaker. “The mental rehearsal of options is just as important, if not more so, than how we actually end up responding in these exercises.”

VIGLANT ACE is one of many regularly planned exercises units on the Korean Peninsula conduct to maintain commitments between the U.S. and ROK, and more importantly, to provide a credible fighting force if ever called upon.


CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
324,273
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast Returns Home After 55-day Counter Narcotics Patrol
The crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast takes a photograph in Manzanillo, Mexico, with two men they rescued during a deployment in the Eastern Pacific Ocean June 10, 2022. The men were lost at sea for 23 days after their vessel was beset by weather. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Seaman Brad O'Brien)
June 24, 2022 - ASTORIA, Ore. — The United States Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast (WMEC 623) returned to homeport Saturday following a 55-day counter narcotics deployment to the Eastern Pacific Ocean.The 210-foot medium endurance cutter and...

Army Alaska National Guard, HHC 297th Regional Support Group Soldiers Contribute To Role Playing Operations During Khaan Quest 2022
On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan Quest, nations were able to showcase their resolve in peacekeeping missions around the world.

Soldiers, Spc. Hunter Mains and Spc. Kyle Johnson with the Army Alaska National Guard, Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 297th Regional Support Group contributed a major role in CPX operations which had them role play in several different scenarios. 

Both Soldiers also participated at the end of the exercise mock press conference. The press conference is designed to prepare peacekeepers and military leaders for questions that may be asked of them during stressful situations. Johnson and Mains roleplayed as journalists asking the questions. 

Pictured here the CPX participants listen to the news conference brief given by the military leadership in a role playing scenerio.
June 23, 2022 - Mongolia -- On June 20, 2022, Khan Quest 2022 ended with the official closing ceremony. Over the past two weeks Mongolian Armed Forces (MAF) hosted 15 nations in this 18th iteration of the exercise. By participating in Khaan...

Juneteenth Celebrated by Department of the Air Force Leaders in Pentagon’s First Official Ceremony
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr., speaks to a crowd of attendees during a Juneteenth Celebration at the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., June 21, 2022. Brown’s message highlighted the importance of promoting an inclusive culture for all Airmen and Guardians to be able to serve to their fullest potential. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Elora J. McCutcheon)
June 22, 2022 - ARLINGTON, Va. (AFNS) -- Hundreds gathered to celebrate the Juneteenth holiday through song, dance, poetry and storytelling at the first official Juneteenth ceremony held at the Pentagon June 21.  Attended by...

Pacific Partnership Kicks Off in Vietnam
PHU YEN, VIETNAM (June 20, 2022) – Captain Hank Kim, Pacific Partnership 2022 mission commander, left, delivers remarks during the Pacific Partnership Vietnam opening ceremony. Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Brandie Nuzzi)
June 21, 2022 - PHU YEN, Vietnam -- Now in its 17th year, Pacific Partnership is the largest annual multinational humanitarian assistance and disaster relief preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Pacific. In Vietnam, the Pacific...

SECNAV Visits Innovative Forward Deployed Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22
U.S. Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro greets U.S. Marine Corps Col. Christopher Steele, the commanding officer of Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) 22, during a visit with MRF-D 22 at Royal Australian Air Force Base Darwin, June 18, 2022. Secretary Del Toro visited Marines and Sailors with MRF-D 22 and Australian Defence Force personnel as part of the Indo-Pacific battlefield circulation. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Emeline Molla)
June 21, 2022 - DARWIN, AUSTRALIA. – The Honorable Carlos Del Toro, the 78th Secretary of the Navy, visited Marines and Sailors with the Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) on June 18.As part of a battlefield circulation tour in the...