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AirPower: 415th SOS trains C-130 loadmasters for success

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II assigned to the 415th Special Operations Squadron.

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II assigned to the 415th Special Operations Squadron prepares for flight on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. At the 415th SOS, student loadmasters are trained to conduct several missions, including rescue airdrops and aerial refueling. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster student performs pre-flight inspections.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Erin O’Sullivan, 58th Training Squadron loadmaster student training with the 415th Special Operations Squadron, performs a pre-flight inspection on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. Before the aircraft is powered on, loadmasters perform initial preflight checks to ensure the safety of the aircrew. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster student performs pre-flight inspections.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Erin O’Sullivan, 58th Training Squadron loadmaster student training with the 415th Special Operations Squadron, performs a pre-flight inspection on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. Loadmaster students receive formal training at the 415th SOS on KAFB before graduating and proceeding to their operational units or continuing follow-on training, such as Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster student performs pre-flight inspections.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Erin O’Sullivan, 58th Training Squadron loadmaster student training with the 415th Special Operations Squadron, performs a pre-flight inspection on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. Before the aircraft is powered on, loadmasters perform initial preflight checks to ensure the safety of the aircrew. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster student performs pre-flight inspections.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Erin O’Sullivan, 58th Training Squadron loadmaster student training with the 415th Special Operations Squadron, performs a pre-flight inspection on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. Before flight, loadmasters ensure the aircraft is safe and ready to perform the mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster student performs pre-flight inspections.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Erin O’Sullivan, 58th Training Squadron loadmaster student training with the 415th Special Operations Squadron, performs a pre-flight inspection on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. At the 415th SOS, student loadmasters are trained to conduct several missions, including rescue airdrops and aerial refueling. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster conducts pre-flight checks of his gear.

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. John Carlin, 415th Special Operations Squadron HC-130J evaluator loadmaster, ensures functioning personal gear before flight on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Dec. 20, 2021. Pre-flight checks of properly functioning equipment systems are performed before take-off to ensure a safe flight. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster uses hand signals to guide cargo onto an aircraft.

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Jed Bilibei, 415th Special Operations Squadron HC-130J evaluator loadmaster, uses hand signals to assist loading cargo onto an MC-130J Commando II on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Dec. 20, 2021. As a loadmaster, Bilibei’s duties include ensuring the aircraft is safe and ready to fly, loading cargo necessary to complete the mission and performing operations during flight. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

A loadmaster prepares to load cargo onto an aircraft.

U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. John Carlin, 415th Special Operations Squadron HC-130J evaluator loadmaster, prepares to load cargo onto an MC-130J Commando II on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Dec. 20, 2021. Before flight, loadmasters are responsible for loading cargo onto the heavy equipment platform and ensuring the extraction chute is secured. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

Loadmasters load cargo onto an aircraft
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Loadmasters assigned to the 415th Special Operations Squadron load cargo onto an MC-130J Commando II on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Dec. 20, 2021. Before flight, loadmasters are responsible for loading cargo onto the heavy equipment platform and ensuring the extraction chute is secured. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

Cargo is loaded onto an aircraft.
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A training heavy equipment airdrop platform is loaded onto an MC-130J Commando II in preparation for a night flight on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Dec. 20, 2021. Before flight, loadmasters are responsible for loading cargo onto the heavy equipment platform and ensuring the extraction chute is secured. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)

KIRTLAND AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. -- A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II assigned to the 415th Special Operations Squadron prepares for flight on Kirtland Air Force Base, N.M., Nov. 22, 2021. At the 415th SOS, student loadmasters are trained to conduct several missions, including rescue airdrops and aerial refueling. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Ireland Summers)