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Load crews battle in quarterly competition

An Airman looks over a munition.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Kyanna Jones, 79th Fighter Generation Squadron load crew member, inspects munitions during a quarterly load crew competition at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Oct. 5, 2020. Jones conducted checks to ensure the munition was safely loaded onto the F-16 Viper. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob Gutierrez)

An Airman inspects an F-16 Viper.

Airman 1st Class Nicholas Lascola, 55th Fighter Generation Squadron (FGS) load crew member, inspects an F-16 Viper during a quarterly load crew competition at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Oct. 7, 2020. The 55th FGS won the quarterly award and will move on to compete at the yearly competition. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob Gutierrez)

An Airman inspects munitions during a load crew competition.

Airman 1st Class Calease Brown, 55th Fighter Generation Squadron load crew member, prepares munitions for loading during a quarterly load crew competition at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Oct. 7, 2020. The quarterly load crew competition is a chance for the teams to demonstrate their proficiency during the loading process. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob Gutierrez)

An Airman holds a munition on the flightline.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Wesley Taylor, 55th Fighter Generation Squadron load crew member, participates in a quarterly load crew competition at Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina, Oct. 5, 2020. The load crew competition measures which team can most effectively load an F-16 Viper. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Jacob Gutierrez)

SHAW AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. -- Weapons load crews from the 55th and 79th Fighter Generation Squadrons competed in an F-16 Viper training exercise Oct. 5.

The teams competed for the third quarter Weapons Load Crew of the Quarter Award to see who could most accurately and safely load the Viper in a set amount of time.

“The competitors today were chosen for their outstanding duty performance and exceptional loading abilities for the third quarter of 2020,” said Master Sgt. Karen Silverio, 20th Maintenance Group loading standardization crew chief. “This competition actually began this morning with a written test, a consolidated tool kit inspection and a dress and appearance inspection.”

The load crews represented the best of their respective squadrons and a collective goal to strive for agility and proficiency in loading aircraft in stateside and future deployed environments.

The 55th FGS was represented by Staff Sgt. Wesley Taylor, as well as Airmen First Class Nicholas Lascola and Calease Brown. The 79th FGS was represented by Staff Sgt. Kyanna Jones, Senior Airmen Ryan Nelson and Ashlei Bieber.

Both teams competed for approximately 50 minutes and after careful consideration the judges deemed the 55th FGS as the winner.

The 55th FGS now have the opportunity to advance to the upcoming Weapons Load Crew of the Year competition.

“I came in with two brand new Airmen and we had a great game plan,” said Taylor. “I’m very proud of them; we did good, we did good.”