TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. --
As the restoration of Tyndall unfolds in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael, a return to normalcy can be seen with revitalizing pre-storm scheduled investments to resources and infrastructure. The professionals of the 325th Communications Squadron assist with the renovations to the 325th Medical Group in the early morning hours, Jan. 7, 2019. A few feet underground, a man sifts through wire insulation to reach the colorful bouquet of wires he must identify, select and cut.
Eric Grath, 325th Communication Squadron cable and antenna systems technician, has been at Tyndall for a number of years. With the storm out of the way, he goes back to normal operations.
“This is an ongoing project,” he said. “The impact it has is that it will keep the [medical] trailers operational and with no down time or loss of service. We would have been here hurricane or not, this has been going on for a year. All we are doing is clearing out the old cable so they can progress with their work and not take the trailers down.”
“This one here, was ran to the final position,” Grath explained holding a bundle of wires, fingers caked with dirt and a gelatinous material intended to keep the wires insulated and safe from the elements underground. “That’s where we are slowly moving all the circuits over to, but we are sharing it with the old location. As they are dancing around keeping it operational, we had to leave it there to feed all the new section that is out front that was never touched with this renovation project. Now they are to a point where they need to demolish it, so we have to trim it out.”
As he continued to explain his work, other members from the 325th CS requested assistance to complete their jobs from inside the 325th MDG. Grath then shifted his attention to another group of wires.
“We are trimming out and separating and old comm (sic) closet that is getting demolished as part of the phasing,” Grath said. “It is sharing circuits between the new trailers and the old building. If you cut the old wires while it’s still tapped together here, it will short everything out and the trailers will go down. So we have to trim out the old stuff so they can move on with their demolition process and not affect the trailers.”
This project, although not an innovation or breaking ground into the new frontier, is necessary to continue any project on Tyndall.
“The 325th CS is an integral part of the 325th Fighter Wing,” said Maj. James Johnson, 325th CS commander. “Our Airmen know that, and they take their duties seriously. Whether bringing the base back from the devastation of Hurricane Michael or ensuring current and future renovations to the installation have the proper lines running through them – we have our hands in everything. In the technological age we live in, there will always be a need for fast and reliable communications. We facilitate connecting Airmen to 21st century technology, and ensure Airmen can connect with Airmen to accomplish the mission of training and projecting unrivaled combat air power.”