HONOLULU — The 115th Security Forces Squadron, Truax Field, Madison, Wisconsin enhanced their survival and technical skills during a two-week jungle and water survival training at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii Jan. 13 – 23.
The group of approximately 25 Airmen faced challenges in land navigation, evasion tactics, combative training and water survival that would have otherwise been unavailable to them in the Midwest.
“Getting hands on in the jungle and the actual ocean has been amazing versus just going over it in a classroom,” said Airman 1st Class Felix Eggl, a defender with the 115th SFS. “Now that I’ve been exposed to the jungle and water I feel way more prepared if I am ever placed in such positions.”
To maximize the Airmen’s training in a non-familiar environment, a survival, evasion, resistance and escape instructor assigned to the 134th Air Refueling Wing, McGhee Tyson Air National Guard Base, Tennessee joined the group.
“The SERE instructors have been awesome in sharing knowledge,” said Eggl. “Getting to talk to SERE instructors and getting hands-on experience has been awesome.”
Learning to adapt and innovate in a location far different from home provided the security forces Airmen with hands-on experience required for world-wide military operations.
“Between survival, evasion, resistance and escape training and the different environments that created new challenges, we are creating a more agile defender,” said Master Sgt. Kevin Hamm, the noncommissioned officer in charge of the training. “Our security forces now have jungle and ocean survival skills that they previously were never exposed to.”