RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany --
The 435th Construction and Training Squadron hosted a series of training exercises with Lithuanian air force service members July 11 through 15, 2016.
Lithuanian airmen performed several exercises such as simulated live-fire events in planes and close-quarter rescue missions.
In order for the exercises to happen, the 435th CTS provided equipment and training facilities that weren’t available for the visiting allies elsewhere. According to LAF Staff Sgt. Valdas Parnarauskas, fire and rescue section commander, the cooperation between them and the U.S. Airmen is paramount to a better training environment.
“I think the Air Force has helped us grow a lot,” said Parnarauskas. “As I oversee my men training with [U.S. Airmen], I see the impact they have on them. The equipment here allows us to complete all of our training and more, and I think that will help us greatly in becoming better at our jobs.”
To kick off the week, LAF firefighters trained on rescuing a training dummy out of a cramped location whilst maintaining sustainable oxygen levels within a time limit. They continued their training throughout the week by participating in simulated live-fire events such as extinguishing fires on aircrafts and structures.
With the help of Airmen such as U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Anthony Montano, 435th CTS contingency firefighting operations instructor, training has gone smoothly for both parties.
“My role for this NATO firefighting partnership course is the program manager, and my aim is to meet the needs of the foreign military members coming in for training with adequate facilitation,” said Montano. “Since we do these training exercises about twice a year, I feel like my working relation with the LAF has become better and has shown in the results we get from our training. We tailor to their needs and as a result, their training engages them more while we learn how to cooperate with allied forces.”
The 435th CTS continues to serve U.S. allies with up-to-date training that maintains a standard of safety and cooperative abilities throughout Europe. This open approach to allowing allies to engage with Ramstein training facilities remains a motive for them to come back.
“We have all become better as a result of being here,” said Parnarauskas. “I look forward to coming back and training our men even harder and improving even more next time.”