Pacific Air Commandos launch on 'day of Jakal'

Four U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron execute a simultaneous overhead break June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

Four U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron execute a simultaneous overhead break June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II flies during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II flies during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II aircrew from the 17th Special Operations Squadron wave to onlookers before leaving for a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure constant readiness to perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II aircrew from the 17th Special Operations Squadron wave to onlookers before leaving for a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure constant readiness to perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II combat systems officer assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron prepares the Commando II for a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Kadena Air Base, Japan. This is the third iteration of the annual training, which is referred to as ‘The Day of the JAKAL.’ It entailed a series of airdrops at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan, to hone in low-altitude maneuvers and supply-delivery capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II combat systems officer assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron prepares the Commando II for a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Kadena Air Base, Japan. This is the third iteration of the annual training, which is referred to as ‘The Day of the JAKAL.’ It entailed a series of airdrops at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan, to hone in low-altitude maneuvers and supply-delivery capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron sits in the back of a Commando II during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. The 17th SOS proudly exemplifies their motto, ‘no mission too demanding’ in both training and real-world contingencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron sits in the back of a Commando II during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. The 17th SOS proudly exemplifies their motto, ‘no mission too demanding’ in both training and real-world contingencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II pilot assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron flies the Commando II during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II pilot assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron flies the Commando II during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. The MC-130J Commando II is a multi-mission combat transport/special operations tanker capable of delivering a payload of 42,000 pounds. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. The MC-130J Commando II is a multi-mission combat transport/special operations tanker capable of delivering a payload of 42,000 pounds. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron line up in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

U.S. Air Force loadmaster Airmen, from the 17th Special Operations Squadron, overserve a five-aircraft formation comprised of MC-130J Commando IIs June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)
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U.S. Air Force loadmaster Airmen, from the 17th Special Operations Squadron, overserve a five-aircraft formation comprised of MC-130J Commando IIs June 22, 2017 off the coast of Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster from the 17th Special Operations Squadron prepares to airdrop a package onto Le Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017. Aircrews must consider a number of variables in order to execute a precise and effective airdrop, to include wind speed, aircraft velocity, altitude, location and timing.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)
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A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster from the 17th Special Operations Squadron prepares to airdrop a package onto Le Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan, during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017. Aircrews must consider a number of variables in order to execute a precise and effective airdrop, to include wind speed, aircraft velocity, altitude, location and timing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II drops a resupply bundle during the airdrop portion of the mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Aircrews must consider a number of variables in order to execute a precise and effective airdrop, to include wind speed, aircraft velocity, altitude, location and timing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)
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A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II drops a resupply bundle during the airdrop portion of the mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Aircrews must consider a number of variables in order to execute a precise and effective airdrop, to include wind speed, aircraft velocity, altitude, location and timing. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron return to base in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)
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U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando IIs from the 17th Special Operations Squadron return to base in a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Routine flights and airdrops are conducted to maintain proficiency and training certifications for prospective missions. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II pilot from the 17th Special Operations Squadron maneuvers toward a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. This is the third iteration of the annual training, which is referred to as ‘The Day of the JAKAL.’ It entailed a series of airdrops at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, to hone in low-altitude maneuvers and supply-delivery capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)
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A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II pilot from the 17th Special Operations Squadron maneuvers toward a five-aircraft formation during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, off the coast of Okinawa, Japan. This is the third iteration of the annual training, which is referred to as ‘The Day of the JAKAL.’ It entailed a series of airdrops at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, to hone in low-altitude maneuvers and supply-delivery capabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman John Linzmeier)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron stands postured to support the rapid infiltration and exfiltration of a tactical vehicle during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)
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A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II loadmaster assigned to the 17th Special Operations Squadron stands postured to support the rapid infiltration and exfiltration of a tactical vehicle during a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017, at Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure they are always ready perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia-Pacific-Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Capt. Jessica Tait)

A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II from the 17th Special Operations Squadron taxis through a birdbath after returning from a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure constant readiness to perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)
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A U.S. Air Force MC-130J Commando II from the 17th Special Operations Squadron taxis through a birdbath after returning from a mass launch training mission June 22, 2017 at Kadena Air Base, Japan. Airmen from the 17th SOS conduct training operations often to ensure constant readiness to perform a variety of high-priority, low-visibility missions throughout the Indo-Asia Pacific Region. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Omari Bernard)

KADENA AIR BASE, Japan --

The 17th Special Operations Squadron observed its annual ‘Day of the Jakal’ with a mass launch of five U.S. Air Force Special Operations MC-130J Commando IIs, June 22, 2017, at Kadena Air Base and Ie Shima Range, Okinawa, Japan.

 

“It’s a great way to showcase the abilities of both the 353rd Special Operations Group and 17th Special Operations Squadron,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Patrick Dube, 17th SOS operations officer. “To get out and put mass on objective. It shows how we can meet the emerging mission sets for both SOCKOR and SOCPAC out here in the Pacific theater.”

 

Five MC-130Js flew in formation from Kadena Air Base to Ie Shima Range to practice mass on objective training to include airdrops, aircraft landings, and rapid infiltration and exfiltration of equipment.

 

“Lots of training and planning goes into ‘Day of the JAKAL’,” said Dube. “First off you have five pieces of iron that weight about 140 thousand pounds flying in formation 500 feet apart. Additionally, aircrews need to drop bundles right on the mark where they need to resupply troops. It’s a good training evolution for these guys.”

 

In addition to the 17th SOS, the 353rd Special Operations Maintenance Squadron and 353rd Special Operation Support Squadron had a role in supporting the event.

 

“This day is all about building cohesion and comradery within the 17th SOS and rest of the group that are a part of the team,” said U.S. Air Force Tech Sgt. Kade Bollinger, 17th SOS instructor loadmaster. “We executed multiple events that we do downrange. It was great to have a competitive training event amongst, not just the aircrew, but encompassing maintenance and enablers as well. The JAKALs are one big family and we wanted to get everybody involved.”

 

The 17th SOS proudly exemplifies their motto, ‘no mission too demanding’ in both training and real-world contingencies.

 

“There is no mission too great for the JAKALs,” said DuBe. “I have the utmost faith in the guys that I fly with and work with every day. They are the best trained and I’d put them up against anybody in the world.”

 

The 17th SOS traces its heritage back to World War II when the unit was activated as the 17th Observation Squadron (Light) on March 2, 1942. The squadron flew the HC-130P/N, later re-designated MC-130P/N, to provide covert aerial refueling for special operations helicopters. Its other missions included infiltrating, exfiltrating and resupplying special operations forces.

 

The 17th SOS currently operates six MC-130J Commando II aircraft.