Aerial porters move into new home

  • Published
  • By Douglas Hays
  • 434th ARW Public Affairs
With the ‘slice’ of giant scissors the 49th Aerial Port Squadron officially moved into their new facility June 3, 2022.

The new 11,870 square-foot facility is located between base operations and the air traffic control tower and is home to 122 aerial porters.

“It’s not every day you get a new building,” said Col. Thom Pemberton 434th Air Refueling Wing commander. “This is the culmination of hard work and effort by many people.”

Col. Eric Crispin, from the Army Corps of Engineers said it took ‘a team of teams’ to make a project like this possible.

For the aerial porters they’ve been waiting 20 years for a place of their own since they arrived on base in 2002 as the 49th Aerial Port Flight.

Planning for the facility began in 2016 in anticipation of restructured manning that would see the unit go from a flight of 39 authorized positions, to a squadron of 122 positions.

“The true value in this facility is the dedicated training space,” said Maj. Jefre Potterbaum, 49th APS commander.

The 49th APS processes air cargo, loads and unloads aircraft, as well as performs joint inspection of cargo and equipment used for air transportation.

The facility’s location to the parking apron, and elevated loading dock will facilitate loading equipment onto k-loaders for transport and transfer to cargo aircraft.

“You can see the value of this new facility in the eyes of the Airmen who will be using, it” Potterbaum added.

The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker unit in the Air Force Reserve Command. The Citizen Airmen from the Hoosier Wing routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission.

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