Lighting up the mission, 786th CES

  • Published
  • By Airman Dymekre Allen
  • 86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs
Airmen from the 786th Civil Engineer Squadron work day and night to maintain all the interior and exterior electrical systems on base to keep Ramstein at night.

"I think it's really important what we do here," said Staff Sgt. Valdir Freitas, 786th CES electrical technician. "Without us providing and maintaining the lighting systems the aircraft that come and go from base would not be able to conduct their daily missions."

The 786th CES maintain 1,766 facilities and more than 5,000 housing units on Ramstein, Sembach, Einsiedlerhof, Kapaun, Landstuhl, Vogelweh and 20 geographically separated units.

"We light up the mission," said Airman 1st Class Rashad Spann, 786th CES electrical technician. "The service that we provide helps all the members of the KMC have the ability to conduct there mission no matter what that maybe."

Even though they provide more than 480 man-hours replacing 110 bulbs per month the flightline is a continuous problem for the CES Airmen.

"Flightline lights go out all the time," said Freitas. "There's always work to be done on the ramps, rather it's on one end or the other, we have to keep at it or all flight operations could cease."

These Airmen risk their lives working in dangerous areas as well as climbing flightline light fixtures ranging from 70 to 180 feet in height.

"This job isn't for people who are afraid of heights," said Spann. "When you're working a job like this it's going to put you out of your comfort zone. Working in tight spaces underground to fix wires or climbing the lights the job has to be done and the CES Airmen are well equipped and well trained to handle any of these situations."

Their responsibilities play a role in base management and many quality of life aspects from the lights in the dorms to the flightline, the 786th CES manages to continue to deliver in their mission.