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8th SFS holds US-ROKAF immersion training

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Akeem K. Campbell
  • 8th Fighter Wing/Public Affairs
The 8th Security Forces Squadron held immersion training with Republic of Korea Air Force Airmen at Kunsan Air Base, ROK, July 21, 2022. This immersion enabled ROK Air Force Airmen to see first-hand how the 8th SFS trains for real world scenarios.

“The goal is to strengthen our relationship,” said Master Sgt. Michael Denson, 8th SFS section chief of training. “We want to make our relationship stronger because we all know when COVID hit, it made a big impact nationally and internationally.”

During the training, ROKAF Airmen were given a tour of the Base Defense Operations Center and were introduced to various sections within the facility such as the pass and registration office, investigations section, logistics and resources and more.

“It’s one thing to work with someone you don’t know and to try and establish a connection but it’s another to work with someone you do know,” said Denson. “Just having that strength and knowledge to know what your partner or coworker is capable of and vice versa makes the mission that much easier to accomplish.”

After the tour, both the ROKAF and 8th SFS Airmen conducted combat baton training. During the training they learned various components of the weapon, different striking techniques and when and how to use it in different scenarios.

“The baton training was my favorite part,” said ROKAF Senior Airman Ingoo Kang, military police defender. “If we had strangers come to our base we would know what to do manually, but we didn’t actually have any real training experience with weaponry like the baton.”

ROKAF personnel faced off against U.S. Air Force Airmen donning red combat sparring armor.

“The progress made today was great,” said Tech. Sgt. James Fraser, 8th SFS noncommissioned officer in charge of training. “It was also great to be able to watch them pick up something that they may never even picked before and develop so fast from just learning a very basic level of striking to being able to go against one of the adversaries in a Redman suit, and to be able to defend themselves.”

During lunch, the two groups exchanged their variation of Meal Ready-to-Eat (MRE) packages. Both sets of Airmen educated each other on how they prepared their meals and learned of the differences between what foods each country issues.

“I have a lot of favorite parts of the training but the MREs was my favorite,” said Airman First Class Lucas Thomas, 8th SFS patrolman. “I’ve never tasted an MRE from another country so it was different but the food was good!”

At the end of the training Denson spoke with the ROKAF Airmen to ask how they felt about the training. They responded with a round of applause for his team’s efforts.

“Personally, I would like more opportunities to train together,” Kang said. “We work together on base but we only occasionally say ‘hi’. I think we will feel more comfortable with U.S. [Airmen] if we have more opportunities like this.”

In traditional U.S. military fashion, they ended the day by doing push-ups.

“I want to thank the ROKAF for coming out, showing enthusiasm and wanting to learn what we were able to teach,” Fraser said. “Not everyone comes to our training and wants to sit there and learn, especially when it comes to combat training, but the ROKAF came out today and just killed it and showed that they wanted to be there and that they can fight.”