TYR Tactical

Archive for the ‘AFSW’ Category

CardoMax Energy Drink Sponsor for WEPTAC

Tuesday, January 9th, 2024

Make sure you grab your CardoMax Sample packs at WEPTAC. There will be 8 energy packets, plus a $10 gift card in every sample pack. 

Then swing by MATBOCK at table 221.



Thursday, December 28th, 2023

January 10-11 at the Nellis Club.

Developing the Next Generation of Air Force Special Warfare Cadet Programs

Tuesday, November 21st, 2023

By Headquarters Air Force A3 Air Force Special Warfare Directorate

Air Force Special Warfare (AFSPECWAR) continues to refine its academic year and summer programs to help AFROTC and USAFA cadets prepare to be Special Tactics Officers (STOs), Tactical Air Control Party Officers (TACPOs), and Combat Rescue Officers (CROs).

Now in year three, USAFA’s formalized “Special Warfare Club” (SWC) academic year materials benefit two areas — first, they are available for AFROTC Detachments to download and develop or refine their own SWC; second, they are used in the 2, two-week Special Warfare Orientation Courses (SWOC) official summer programs.

The information and exposure will help cadets prepare physically and mentally prior to attending a selection for Special Warfare, called Phase II.  The 19Z Special Warfare Officers (STO/TACPO/CRO) are the only officer specialties which require successful selection at a pre-commissioning screener to begin their respective training pipelines, according to Col. John M. Graver, individual mobilization augmentee to the director of AF/A3S Air Force Special Warfare.

“With no previous experience, many cadets do poorly, negatively impacting unit readiness. Now, we provide them a safe introduction to the events and evaluation criteria,” said Graver. “Without a formalized method to prepare, cadets have proven to develop unsafe habits.”

Currently, filling commissioning slots for the 19Z AFSC is a challenge shared by both AFROTC and USAFA.

“We want cadets to be successful. Our program includes over 30 academic and physical lesson plans, risk management, and templates to organize their SWCs, along with opportunities to learn from contracted coaches, thereby mitigating risk for Detachment commanders,” added Graver.

The last SWOC was held in June and July 2023 at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colo. where 80 AFROTC and USAFA cadets participated; with more than 20 cadets-in-charge and over 20 uniformed and civilian staff from USAFA, AFROTC, MAJCOMs, and Air Force and Army flying units assisting with the training.

SWOC involves over 40 events to prepare cadets for the “Phase II” pre-commissioning screener. These included land and water fitness sessions, troop leading procedures, small unit tactics, decision making, as well as planning and executing global access, precision strike, and personnel recovery missions.

Additionally, AFROTC cadets can participate in AFRS-led Special Warfare AFROTC Weekend (SWAW) events, which are conducted 8-10 times throughout the academic year at various detachments hosting these weekend events around the country.

“We want to provide interested cadets as many opportunities as possible to prepare,” said Maj. Eric Atchison, Air Force Recruiting Service. “Between these SWAW events, the 2-week SWOC opportunities in the summer, and an increased number of Special Warfare Clubs at Detachments, we can prepare as many cadets as possible to succeed as leaders in the Special Warfare community. It’s an extremely challenging and rewarding career like no other, and we are looking for the right young men and women who have what it takes to succeed, no matter the odds.”

AFROTC detachments with interest in developing or refining their cadet Special Warfare Club should expect to receive another message this fall on these opportunities, and may reach out to Maj. Atchison for additional information at [email protected]

Special Warfare Training Wing: Five Years of Advancing Ground Combat Forces Training

Friday, October 20th, 2023


Five years ago, the U.S. Air Force took a significant leap forward in combat preparedness by establishing the Special Warfare Training Wing (SWTW), an evolution that addressed decades of training shortfalls and operational demands. The SWTW marked a paradigm shift, assuming control over an extensive network of squadrons and detachments. Notably, the wing superseded the former Battlefield Airman Training Group, extending its legacy of ground warfare specialization. Official establishment at JBSA-Lackland was green-lit by SECAF Heather Wilson and materialized on October 17, 2018.

The term “Battlefield Airman” had become somewhat of a misnomer, not fully encapsulating the range of expertise within the unit. The rebranding to “Special Warfare Training Wing” sought to rectify misconceptions, focusing on a collective warrior identity, irrespective of Air Force Specialty Codes (AFSCs). This new identity was also strategic, positioning the Air Force competitively in the quest for robust recruitment and aligning with joint terminology familiar within military echelons. The change acknowledged the unique needs of these Airmen, from recruitment to combat deployment.

A critical component of this new wing was the Human Performance Support Group (HPSG), tasked with optimizing the ‘human weapon system.’ “Much like the wing, this group is one of a kind and was built upon the lessons of two decades of sustained combat operations,” said Col. Nathan Colunga, Special Warfare Training Wing commander. “The Air Force acknowledged that the harsh nature of ground combat requires a level of care for Special Warfare Airmen not unlike that of high-end weapons systems across our force.” The HPSG provides research, development, testing and evaluation of human performance techniques and tools that can translate into the operational community and more broadly, the rest of the Department of Defense.

Senior Master Sgt. Gregory Navickas, Human Performance Support Group senior enlisted leader, emphasized the power of this integrated approach. The group’s success, according to Navickas, is due to its expert staff, who are “committed to the mission” and excel in their respective fields. Its multidisciplinary team, encompassing medical professionals, physical therapists, coaches, nutritionists, dieticians, and additional combat support staff, who work cohesively across the training enterprise. Their unified vision transcends traditional roles, working collaboratively to preemptively address issues before they escalate. This holistic approach ensures Airmen are comprehensively prepared for combat and receive thorough care afterward, extending into post-military life.

A poignant moment in the young wing’s existence, Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Medina Training Annex was officially renamed Chapman Training Annex in March 2020. It is now a tribute to the bravery and sacrifice of Medal of Honor recipient Master Sgt. John A. Chapman, an Air Force combat controller who gave his life fighting to save his teammates’ lives in Afghanistan in 2002. This annex was the beginning of establishing San Antonio, Texas as the “Home of Air Force Special Warfare.” Since making Chapman home, the wing has developed and begun an expansive campus plan that includes the Senior Airman Bradley Smith fitness facility, Forbes Hall renovations, and a monumental new aquatic training center scheduled to open in Spring 2024.

Now five years old, the wing has shown profound progress. “We have attained more consistency and efficiency in the pipeline’” said Michael Delsoldato, Special Warfare Training wing historian. “What we are training our Airmen to do has inherent dangers both in training and in the real world. Although there is always room to improve, the creation of the wing allows full concentration on the holistic production of the Airmen.”  

As warfare evolves in the face of rapid technological advancements, the SWTW stands as a testament to the Air Force’s commitment to adaptability and the continuous pursuit of combat excellence. Its establishment not only signifies the evolution of specialized combat training but also underscores the irreplaceable value of human resilience and adaptability in modern warfare.

“Our mission is the same,” Colunga says. “Prepare these Airmen for the physical and psychological load of close combat. This mission is simply stated, yet as I’ve witnessed, difficult to execute. This load is not theoretical, it is real, well established, and these Airmen make a professional choice to shoulder it. And in doing so they accept the personal risk and sacrifice that goes with it. Therefore, we must prepare them and care for them accordingly – and that is the charge of the Special Warfare Training Wing.”

By Jennifer Gangemi, Special Warfare Training Wing

D-Cell Redesignated 24th Rapid Deployment Squadron

Tuesday, September 19th, 2023


The 24th Special Operations Wing redesignated Detachment 1, also known as Deployment Cell or “D-Cell,” to the Rapid Deployment Squadron during a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., Sept. 6, 2023.

A geographically separated unit from the 24 SOW at Hurlburt Field, Fla., the Rapid Deployment Squadron consists of members across 15 career fields, forming four agile teams. These teams of multi-capable Airmen are trained in 49 cross-functional tasks including survival, evasion, resistance and escape training, advanced shooting and advanced combat casualty care.

The primary role of the RDS is to “bare base,” which is to rapidly turn austere locations into fully functional bases.

Col. Daniel Magruder, Jr., presided over the ceremony and gave opening remarks.

“Over 60 years ago, General Curtis Lemay established a unit that supported deployment operations,” said Magruder. “While your customer has changed over the years from U.S. Strike Command, which doesn’t exist anymore, your dedication to mission accomplishment hasn’t wavered.

The ceremony included the inactivation of Det-1, along with the activation of the 24th RDS and assumption of command.

“I’m encouraged that every member of your unit’s long blue line knows exactly where the unit came from,” said Magruder. “You know what it provides to our nation and the joint force, and where it’s going as it’s redesignated the 24th Rapid Deployment Squadron.”

In the last 54 years, both D-Cell and Det-1 have served under three different commands with its members participating in over 30 operations and four wars.

After accepting the guideon, Lt. Col. Michael Biederman, Commander, 24th RDS, expressed his excitement for the future.

“We have gained clarity on how AFSOC sees us and have rekindled our relationships with our partners to forge ahead in what we do best establishing bare bases and providing specialized engineering, logistics, services and security expertise in supporting the tip of the spear,” said Biederman. “In our uncertain geopolitical future I am certain the 24th Rapid Deployment Squadron will carry on DCELLs historic namesake to the far reaches of the globe.”

By Capt Savannah Stephens, 24th Special Operations Wing

AF Special Warfare Training Wing Hosts Pelvic Health Clinic

Wednesday, September 13th, 2023

The Special Warfare Training Wing supports a rigorous training pipeline, preparing America’s Airmen to meet the physical & cognitive demands required to compete in a contested environment. The physical stresses of both the female and male trainee make training taxing on their pelvic floor & abdominal wall. The prevalence of urinary incontinence for athletes is cited ranging between 10-80%, and for female athletes, 49% experience stress urinary incontinence with exercise.

Given these staggering numbers and the physical demands placed on candidates entering the #afspecwar pipeline, Major Greene, a Physical Therapist (PT) supporting the 352 Combat Control School, invited two Pelvic Health PTs to host a 2-day “pelvic health for the athlete” course at Chapman Annex, JBSA for musculoskeletal experts serving in both the Special Warfare Training Wing and partners at the 59th Medical Wing. The Special Warfare Human Performance Squadron is the first in the DoD serving the special warfare community to understand this impact, host a training course to address the issue, and build a capability ready for America’s next generation of operators.

Special Warfare Human Performance Support Group

USAF Special Warfare Physical Training Preparation Manual

Saturday, August 19th, 2023


24 SOW Safety Manager Rescues Large Shark

Saturday, August 5th, 2023


U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. (Ret.), Tazz Felde, 24th Special Operations Wing Occupational Safety Manager, received an unusual call from his wife Monday afternoon, Jul. 24, about a six to seven-foot nurse shark tangled up in an artificial reef near John Beasley Park in Fort Walton Beach, Fla.

“We were made aware of a nurse shark in distress at a local man-made reef here in Destin,” said Felde. “Another diver reported that he and his buddy had come across the shark, with a large hook in its mouth, and were unsuccessful at freeing the animal.”

In a video posted to Felde’s Youtube channel, you can see the shark sitting on the ocean floor with a large hooked in the corner of its mouth. The hook was attached to a steel leader with 100-150 feet of  fishing line that had become wrapped around the reef.

“My wife, Courtney, told me if I didn’t go free the shark she was going to do it herself,” said Felde. “I knew the worst that could happen was that it crushed my hand. He would certainly break my hand if he got it in his mouth, but my concern was making sure that it was freed and able to go about its day.”

Felde cleaned up more than a hundred feet of tangled fishing line while diving to protect other marine life at the reef.

While working in his off time as the co-owner of Under Pressure Divers, Felde says he always teaches his students to not be afraid of sharks or marine life, and to always leave the water better than they found it.

“I don’t want people to be afraid of them because they’re really no harm to us in the grand scheme of things,” said Felde. “Don’t be scared of sharks. A lot of stuff you see on TV during Shark Week can be scary, and a lot of it is real, but for the most part, sharks don’t really bother us much.”

By Capt Savannah Stephens, 24th Special Operations Wing