Aerial Porters essential to Cannon ops
link U.S. Air Force Photo: Airman 1st Class Shelby Kay-Fantozzi
Airman 1st Class Bradley Gann, 27th Special Operations Logistics Readiness Squadron aerial porter, rolls a deflated parachute Feb. 4 at Melrose Air Force Range. After rolling the canopy, aerial porters "daisy-chain" the lines at the end of the parachute to prevent tangling.
27th Special Operations Wing Public Affairs
The last six hours of an aerial porter’s job mark the start of a mission for everyone else. Known for working where the fight is, operating in rain or shine and getting the job done quickly and expertly, aerial porters, or 2T2s, support aerial delivery and air mobility at Cannon Air Force Base.
“We’re working before ‘the first boots on the ground’ get onto the ground,” said Tech. Sgt. Donald Ray, 27th Special Operations Logistics Readiness Squadron air terminal operations NCO in charge. “We do all the things that happen before troops board an airplane.”
Cannon’s 2T2s have daily duties such as fleet service missions and uploading or downloading aircraft. If they are not working on the flight line, they pack parachutes or rig loads before they are dropped. Aerial porters also spend time at Melrose Air Force Range. recovering dropped parachutes and loads.
“With all the things we load, including ammunition, and tanks, people and equipment don’t get downrange without going through us,” said Ray.
Often amongst the first boots on the ground at deployed locations, aerial porters ensure some of the mission’s first crucial pieces of equipment are off the plane. Later, they are responsible for redeploying all assets back to their home station.
“We’ll be the last ones heading out because we’ll be the people getting that final piece of equipment on the plane,” said Ray.
Aerial porters are available whenever the mission requires, often responding quickly to changes in a mission or environment.
“We never know everything that is going to happen, but no matter what task we’re given, we’ll do it and we will do it well,” said Master Sgt. Lewis McClung, 27th Special Operations Logistics Readiness Squadron air terminal operations section chief. “The people here in this shop make it happen.”