US Army, October 23, 2014 - HUNTER ARMY AIRFIELD, GA by Sgt William Begley - The “Workhorse” Soldiers of Company B, 603rd Aviation Support Battalion, 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade concluded their hands-on verification process of the CH-47F Chinook helicopter maintenance manuals.
The product manager for the CH-47F Chinook helicopter, Lt. Col. Reese Hauenstein, was on hand Oct. 15 to reward the Soldiers of Company B, 603rd ASB with some challenge coins for a job well-done.
“What we’re doing is taking this aircraft, which is the first configuration to come off the production line, and reviewing the maintenance manuals through the hands-on verification process,” Hauenstein said. “That way, the next 155 aircraft to come off the line will incorporate these modifications.”
Hauenstein went on to say the manuals will literally be gone through step-by-step, front-to-back to ensure the maintenance process is outlined correctly.
The CH-47 Chinook, the Army's only heavy-lift helicopter, is a critical asset for transporting troops, supplies, and providing various combat support and combat service support operations.
Staff Sgt. Wade Cross, Company B, 603rd ASB is a technical inspector for the CH-47F Chinook helicopter. He was involved in the verification process from start to finish.
“This is a brand new aircraft with new sub-components attached to it,” Cross said. “It’s important to work with the aircraft manufacturer, the engineers and the people that make our log books, step-by-step to make sure all the images and artwork looks like the real thing, and the process works smoothly.”
Cross said the process was very thorough, with multiple people looking at each task. It is extremely important they do this right the first time.
“After this process leaves us here, it goes out Army-wide, so we’re setting the standard which everyone will follow,” Cross continued. “It’s an incredible honor to be chosen to perform this critical process, and our Soldiers are all very excited to be a part of it.”
Sgt. Dylan Davis, Company B, 603rd ASB, has over two years working as an avionics mechanic. Davis also took part in the verification process, and said he learned a lot throughout the experience.
“I have a new Soldier who is fresh out of advanced individual training (AIT) and this experience has helped me to teach them about the aircraft,” Davis said. “We’ve been able to learn the aircraft through the manuals very extensively.”
Hauenstein said he was very pleased with the way the process went.
“You guys did an outstanding job,” said Hauenstein. “We couldn’t have asked for a better group of Soldiers to come out and do this with.”