FROM THE COMMANDER:
Wings of the Eagle Families,
Where has the time
gone? The last month has been a blur as
we completed our right and left seat rides with 1-189 Aviation out of
the Line company crew chiefs have done a phenomenal job with aircraft
maintenance. The bulk of our maintenance efforts take place at night
because the majority of our missions
are flown during the day. It’s incredible to walk down to the
I am truly living the dream.
Dear Hawk Assault Family, First off – THANKS FOR THE
God bless, John Wilson, Hawk 6.
We like our Baskin Robbins!
The First Sergeant – he’s definitely happy to be here – can’t you tell?
Uncasing the Hawk Assault Guidon at the Transfer of Authority Ceremony
Iraqi MI-24 Hind attack helicopters in
With the handover complete, the Comancheros are up and running and have assumed the full mission load. We are flying quite a bit, with 6 helicopters in the air almost every day and most missions lasting from 4-6 hours.
As I’m sure you have all heard, the living and working conditions could not be better. Everyone lives in a trailer and sleeps on beds. The company command post is located in a trailer as well with an area to plan flights and an area for the crewchiefs and doorgunners to work.
transportation consists of some HMMWVs and trailers which is how we get
ourselves and our gear out to the flightline as well as some gators that we use
to run around. The post is split into an
Air Force side and an Army side. We have
a nice PX on our side and a Pizza Hut, Burger King, and Barber Shop are due to
open up shortly. The food in the chow
hall is even better than
Our mission is to transport mainly VIPs and important personnel all over the country. We see new parts of the country almost every day. The working conditions are much better for the pilots, as we have enough computers and support to properly plan flights. It’s absolutely amazing. The crewchiefs are receiving lots of maintenance support from D Company. It’s not perfect support yet, but it’s getting there. The crewchiefs just don’t have enough time in their day to conduct all of the maintenance required on their assigned aircraft.
It seems hard to believe that we have been gone for an entire month already. I can’t say enough how much the support from back home means to all the guys. The mail system is up and running and letters and packages have been flowing in left and right. We so greatly appreciate all that you do back home for us and please let me know if there is anything that I or the rest of the Comancheros over here can do for you. We wish you all the best as you roll into the Thanksgiving Holiday. More pictures of the guys to follow next month. Best Wishes and take care.
“Shoot ‘em in the Face.”
One of 4th
Battalion’s Blackhawks supporting operations in and around
Comments from the Commander:
Dear Friends and Family of the Kingsmen,
Greetings from LSA Anaconda, our home for the foreseeable future. It hasn’t been easy getting everyone into their homes, but everyone has a bed to sleep in and a roof over their head now. It’s been an interesting few weeks of difficult missions without hot water or electricity for a couple days, but as they always have in tough situations, the Kingsmen made it through.
Despite some early frustrations, life here is pretty good. Once we moved into housing, most of the guys were able to get their hands on TVs, microwaves, refrigerators, and even bikes. Soon, everyone will have the chance to put internet into their own room if they wish, so you should be hearing from your soldier more often. But, as good as things might sound here, there’s no place like home and we miss you all very much.
Now that we have assumed the mission here, time seems to be passing quickly for all of us. The crew chiefs and door gunners have been working tirelessly, day and night, to ensure that the aircraft are mission capable each day. Thanks to their hard work, B Company has the highest mission capable readiness rate in the battalion thus far. Our maintenance test pilots have carried the load of the entire battalion’s aircraft, assisting other company’s with their maintenance requirements after ours are met. Their selfless service has helped make our unit’s mission more successful than any. Our pilots continue to plan and execute missions with precision and class, well above the standard. Our instructor pilots have trained us well and we all feel confident that we can perform this mission without fail and return home to you, safe and sound.
Attached are some pictures of our home, our work area, and the guys. I hope you enjoy them. We are working out some technical difficulties with the website, but will be updating them more often beginning today. Thanks for your understanding.
Just like you, I am
extremely proud of the men and women in this unit and their conduct throughout
this very challenging time of transition.
Now that we have taken over the mission here in
Blackwidow family, hello from BALAD! Since our arrival a couple of weeks ago, we
have been busy getting settled in and learning about our mission. We did a transition with C/1-189
I have been so impressed with everyone in this company. Several of the crew chiefs have really stepped up to the plate and are giving their all every single day. They are the most worked as they work 14 hour days while flying, conducting maintenance and dealing with the aircraft computers! In spite of all that they deal with, they have great attitudes, the morale is high and they continue to come in the next day and work even harder. The pilots are also continuing to impress me. They are flexible and move to different aircraft quickly when maintenance is needed, and constantly strive to complete the mission above standard, while also making the company run more efficiently.
Some exciting news from here:
exciting news from home:
I know the communication between home and here is much better this deployment, which makes the time pass by quicker. The Soldiers and officers all love the packages and letters they have received from you all. Thank you for your constant support of this company and all that you do at home to keep things running there. You are the backbone of all of us and without your support; things here would be much harder! We look forward to more interaction between home and here soon.
SSG Valencia has added some content to our website
them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I hope you all have a wonderful and fulfilling Thanksgiving. The Blackwidows are thankful this year that you are such a loving family to us. Hopefully we can get some good pictures on Turkey Day to send home to you! Until next time…
“Mate & Kill!”
A lot has happened in the last month, and it’s hard to believe it’s only going to get busier next month.
As I write this letter, the battalion has flown just over 1,000 hours in its first month here in theater. This amount is expected to nearly double next month.
It goes without saying that your soldiers are digging in and working out the transition kinks. They are the ones responsible for making this the smoothest running maintenance operation on this side of the world.
the last newsletter, the Desperados have transitioned from
loaded our bags into a connex truck followed by a grueling two hour bus ride to
an airbase in
While most of us listened to SSG Mihalko’s continuous trash talk about how awesome he is, others watched movies or read magazines during our four hour wait for the plane. You gotta love the Air Force!
The C-130 ride to Balad was less than comfortable. Everyone was happy to finally arrive at our destination and begin settling into life on LSA Anaconda. After our safe arrival, we began the duffel bag drag to find that cozy trailer we will call home for the next 11 months.
trailers are a nice change from the open bays we had at
It took some time, but everyone is finally settled into their trailer and is shifting focus toward the busy year of maintenance ahead for the Desperados.
Our first priority of business was getting moved into our hanger. There was an enormous mess to organize prior to move-in.
was almost like someone had abandoned a yard sale. The company’s clean up and
move in is going quite well. We are slowly taking the
The maintenance platoon set up its new SPAM (Shop Set Air Mobile), and is in the process of moving the tool room into this “bigger and better” shop space.
The shops platoon has moved into its offices inside the hanger and is almost fully set up now.
1SG Paul had a blast with the fork lift earlier this week, moving all the milvans and concrete barriers around. He’s creating quite a “Fortress Desperado” at the hanger.
While 1SG Paul continues adjusting the layout of Fortress Desperado, tech supply is constructing a parts storage yard. Aside from the continuous onslaught of maintenance, next on the agenda is repainting the hangar to accentuate our Desperado dazzle.
Our first month in support of OIF 05-07 has unfolded rapidly and made the month pass quickly. Thanks to our soldiers and the support they receive from home, our deployment is on track to be a great success!
Thanks for the support!
Dear FSC “Workhorse” families,
The month of November has come and went like a
flash, which is very good news indeed.
It is hard to believe another hectic month has passed us by. Hopefully, the coming months will continue to
pass us by just as quickly, and if they remain as action packed as this month I
am sure they will. November has seen the
company fly out of Kuwait on a C-17, safely arrive on LSA Anaconda, get settled
into our new work and living areas, and then take over the mission from HHC
I also have a lot of good news to pass along this
month. We promoted several soldiers to
the ranks of PFC and
Finally, I want to extend thanks for all the continued support Workhorse families have given me and their loved ones over the first month and a half of this deployment. Without the families back home supporting us, we would not have the will to do what we are. Just knowing that you are all back home waiting for us to return gives us the energy to make it through every day. We miss you all dearly. Continue to keep us in your thoughts and prayers.
Jason E. Ison
“Strong Families make Strong Soldiers!”
FSC on the C-17 Flight to Balad
FSC on the C-17 Flight to Balad
Baggage download @ Ali Al Salem
Baggage download @ Ali Al Salem
Awards - Promotions - Re-enlistment
PV2 Vazquez, Albert – 7 Nov
PFC Helberg, Stephen – 11 Nov
PV2 Chambers, Marquis – 12 Nov
Wings of the Eagle Soldiers, Families and Friends,
November was a busy month for us. We have successfully integrated new Soldiers into the Rear Detachment and begun to deploy Soldiers and equipment forward into the fight.
The month started off with a solemn reminder that freedom is not always free. The Division held its first Eagle Remembrance Ceremony in which nine fallen Soldiers from the 101st were honored. It was a dignified time, and a time to reflect on the lives of these warriors. Our thoughts and prayers will remain with their families.
have good news too… congratulations are in order for 1LT Mangiaracina,
Have a Happy and safe Thanksgiving as the holiday season is about to kick off. One Team One Fight!
1SG Timothy Bridges Rear 07
The picture above does not do justice to the fabulous card art drawn for
the Wings Battalion by CW2 P.J. Pittman of B/2-147 Aviation. The actual card is
a very detailed, clear pencil drawing that proudly shows all of the Wings’
companies on a Christmas tree. CW2 Pittman drew the card for us while training
I am thankful for all of you!