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Minnesota National Guard
133rd Engineers work with Marines to improve Maine community with construction projects

133rd CES RAYMOND, Maine - US Air Force Airmen from the Minnesota National Guard's St Paul-based 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron and US Marines from Bridge Company A, 6th Engineer Support Battalion, based in Battle Creek Mich, completed multiple construction projects at Camp Hinds Boy Scout Camp and within the local community during Innovative Readiness Training

The Airmen from the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron are part of the Prime Base Engineer Emergency Force (Prime BEEF) These specialized Airmen have the capability to rapidly deploy, construct and maintain the bed down efforts of military personnel and equipment to multiple locations across the globe Completing projects through the Innovative Readiness Training (IRT) at Camp Hinds, combined with projects within the city of Raymond, Maine, gives the Airmen an opportunity to exercise and develop their skill sets while giving something back to the local community The type of construction work required aligns extremely well with these Airmen's core capabilities It gives unit leaders the opportunity to select project leads and junior non-commissioned officers to act as deployed non-commissioned officers-in-charge fostering future mission essential leaders

The joint service IRT at Camp Hinds also included US Marines from Bridge Company A, 6th Engineer Support Battalion, two US Navy Hospital Corpsmen and three Royal Engineers from the British Army 24 Commando Engineer Regiment They were given their own projects to complete around Camp Hinds and even tasked with the construction of a small cabin at Camp Bomazeen Boy Scout Camp in Belgrade, Maine

After returning from Camp Bomazeen, they were encouraged to work together with members of the US Air Force The integration of Service members from the Air force, Marine Corps and the British Army helped the Airmen better understand how other entities of the military work and operate This collaboration during IRT cultivates diverse, mission ready Airmen

"Even though there is not a project for every individual's Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC) skill level, excellent cross training opportunities have been accomplished," said Maj Scott Beeman, officer-in-charge for the 133rd Civil Engineer Squadron "This allows for a very diverse, flexible and resilient workforce in a contingency environment"

These Service members are the fourth rotation out of nine that will come through Camp Hinds to complete construction projects this year Each rotation is two weeks in duration and each one has its own set of construction goals it must achieve within that time The duration staff oversees all the on-going projects and makes sure project deadlines are met

"They were extremely well prepared, took initiative and made great suggestions," said Lt. Col. Eric Neumann, duration staff site officer in charge from the 245th Civil Engineer Squadron for Camp Hinds "The group accomplished far more than what was expected and exceeded our expectations"

The camp is currently poised to be one of the nicest Boy Scout Camps on the east coast upon completion It will boast a brand new dining facility, athletic field, cabins and multiple shooting ranges Service members were encouraged to participate in activities offered by the camp throughout the extent of their stay including kayaking, skeet shooting and zip lining These activities strengthen friendships, build camaraderie and enhance overall morale amongst both Boy Scouts and Service members alike

The work was arduous and often very physically demanding Nevertheless, the Service members remained resilient and worked side-by-side, often in high temperatures and rain, for a common goal The Service members who participated in the IRT received great training while bettering the community and leaving behind a legacy that will be appreciated by future Boy Scouts for years to come The real-world training environment at Camp Hinds proved instrumental in furthering these Service members' ability to deploy, construct and maintain a base, better preparing them to deploy to a combat environment or provide aid in disaster relief

June 14, 2015
by Staff Sgt Austen Adriaens
133rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

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