Team Old Skool wins 2019 Port Dawg Challenge

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Kristen Pittman
  • 403rd Wing Public Affairs

Four teams comprised of members of the Air Force Reserve 403rd Wing’s 41st Aerial Port Squadron participated in the 6th annual Port Dawg Challenge here during this month’s unit training assembly Oct. 5.

The challenge is an in-house event that includes competitions that test the Reserve Airmen’s abilities in their jobs. The contest prepares the unit for their everyday mission as well as the three-day Air Force Reserve Command-wide Port Dawg Challenge at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia.

The 41st APS is responsible for the processing, loading and unloading of cargo and personnel on flights as well as rigging airdrop loads and drop-zone recovery.

Chief Master Sgt. Sherita Johnson, chief enlisted manager for the squadron and one of the judges of the challenge, said the competition is very good for morale and enables team building.

Teams participate in five events: forklift obstacle course, chains and devices, cargo pallet build-up, trivia and fitness were judged on time, quality and safety. The teams are divided by specialists in the areas of cargo, ramp, aerial transport operations center, passenger services and leadership. This inclusiveness of each specialty affords the opportunity for these specialists to gain experience in roles they would not normally train for.

Ultimately, “Team Old Skool”, comprised of senior non-commissioned officers from the unit, came out victorious. Johnson said their prizes are a trophy and bragging rights.

“The event is two-fold. First and foremost this is a morale booster. The challenge gets them out of the office and out of a classroom training environment,” said Lt. Col. Jeff Frye, 41st APS commander. “It is a friendly competition that boosts teamwork and provides esprit de corps, but at the same time, it gives good, essential hands-on training that maybe they haven’t had before.”