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332d Expeditionary Communication Squadron keeps Red Tails connected

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Lauren M. Snyder
  • 332d Air Expeditionary Wing Public Affairs

The 332d Expeditionary Communication Squadron keeps 332d Air Expeditionary Wing Airmen digitally connected by ensuring the ability to transfer data across the installation and world in a timely and efficient manner.

“Our motto ‘Comms up, bombs down’ says it all,” said Chief Master Sgt. Nicholas B. Folds, 332d ECS senior enlisted leader. “Without comm, missions would be very difficult to coordinate or impossible to complete; we're all here to keep those jets moving, give first responders what they need, and care for our warfighters.”

The 332d ECS enables the 332d AEW to provide combat airpower throughout the region, by overseeing the operability of unclassified and classified internet networks, the Comprehensive Airman Fitness (CAF) Wi-Fi, data-enabled phones, the Armed Forces Network, the Land Mobile Radio (LMR) system, as well as the emergency notification Giant Voice system. Comm Airmen climb into manholes to access cables, maintain computer and phone servers, and combat cyber threats across the wing’s devices.

“We're more than gainfully employed,” said Folds about the 332d ECS ops tempo. “We also maintain communication infrastructure for the 332d AEW’s geographically-separated sites’ by supporting programming, encryption devices, routers or switches, running cable and trenching.”

The squadron’s 10 sections include network operations, network infrastructure, radio contingency, cable and antenna, communications focal point, engineering, installation, plans and programs, cybersecurity, and knowledge management.

“We have some big projects coming, to include our radio shop’s ability to rekey the LMRs over the network instead of each one individually every month, knowledge operations’ efforts in creating a new tracking program for lodging, extending internet network capabilities across the installation and upgrading Wi-Fi security,” said Folds.

Completing large communication infrastructure projects and the daily smaller jobs boosts the wing’s overall effectiveness.

“A lot of our daily work is dealing with little emergencies,” said Folds. “Those range from issues like fiber going out for one of the MQ-9 Reaper aircraft terminals or cut wires requiring a fix that could take three hours or three days depending on whether it needs a wire splice or trenching and fiber repair. If the Wi-Fi goes down that’s a resilience issue, but also impacts our payment system. Every job and building on the installation relies on communication capabilities.

The 332d ECS provides a broad range of communication services to the 332d AEW workforce to win the fight today as well as tomorrow - building on the Red Tail legacy of excellence.