F-16s Visit Ellsworth for Training Exercise

South Dakota Air National Guard F-16s flew long-range strike sorties from Ellsworth AFB, S.D., dropping live ordnance over the Utah Test and Training Range last week. Six F-16s of the 175th Fighter Squadron deployed, along with 90 airmen, from Sioux Falls to Ellsworth on Sept. 17 for live drop training. “Ellsworth was instrumental in allowing us to utilize their resources for our fighters to complete their annual requirements,” said MSgt. Shawn Greer, 114th Logistics Readiness Squadron first sergeant. Since the B-1B bombers of Ellsworth’s 37th Bomb Squadron are currently deployed to Southwest Asia, Ellsworth had free ramp space to accommodate the exercise, according to the base’s Sept. 24 release. “We were able to land on [Sept. 17] and immediately set up our operations,” said 175th FS pilot Capt. Steve Shultz. In the air “we met our goal in hitting times over targets as precisely as possible,” he added. Live Drop 2012 ran through Sept. 21. (Ellsworth report by A1C Hrair Palyan)