Ellsworth AFB takes in C-17s due to Hurricane Dorian

ELLSWORTH AFB, S.D. — As Hurricane Dorian officially made landfall on the U.S. on Friday, Joint Base Charleston in South Carolina needed a place to send their C-17’s so that they wouldn’t be damaged by the storm. Luckily, Ellsworth Air Force Base was ready and willing to help.

“We actually have a support agreement with them. so in instances like this we actually have an agreement to support them and their aircraft. In total, we were able to receive about ten, or actually ten C-17’s from at least three different squadrons as well as 110 personnel again for multiple different squadrons,” Lt. Col. Lincoln Coleman with the 28th Operation Support Squadron at EAFB.

According to SMSgt. James Correll with the 28th Logistics Readiness Squadron at EAFB, “it really is truly a team effort. So coming in, there’s a lot of folks that are involved in that. Anywhere from having he airfield open, also to maintenance, to logistic readiness. For this particular situation, they came in on a Monday. So being able to get 110 people down as quickly as possible in the ten aircraft that did come in from Charleston, it really did take multiple folks in multiple different specialties in order to make that happen.”

Evacuating aircraft from any base is not a decision that the air force makes lightly, so our airmen at Ellsworth wanted to make it as easy and comfortable for the arriving crews as possible.

” Being able to get them in here, get them settled, and just relieve a stresser that they’re having from the east coast having to evacuate,” said SMSgt. Correll.

“They’re going though a lot of stress right now, if you can imagine leaving your family to fend for themselves in a chaotic time, so we just want to be the best neighbors we could and provide them a safe haven to protect their assets as well,” said Lt. Col. Coleman.

One of the C-17’s has already gone back to South Carolina for it’s next mission and the others are expected to fly out sometime this weekend, but it all depends on the track of the storm.

Categories: Local News, South Dakota News