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ASOS Airmen show families skills, training at Saylor Creek

Maj. Shawn Scott and his family watch an A-10 Thunderbolt II make a strafing pass at Saylor Creek range Aug. 5 as part of the 124th Air Support Operations Squadron's Kin Appreciation Day. During the event family and loved ones were able to see up close the equipment joint terminal attack controllers use in training and combat, as well as eat lunch and watch A-10 Thunderbolt II's conduct strafing runs with their GAU-8 gatling cannon.

Maj. Shawn Scott and his family watch an A-10 Thunderbolt II make a strafing pass at Saylor Creek range Aug. 5 as part of the 124th Air Support Operations Squadron's Kin Appreciation Day. During the event family and loved ones were able to see up close the equipment joint terminal attack controllers use in training and combat, as well as eat lunch and watch A-10 Thunderbolt II's conduct strafing runs with their GAU-8 gatling cannon.

August 5, 2012 -- The best way to help communicate to your family what you actually do at work is to show them.

But when you operate in a dangerous environment like the Airmen of the 124th Air Support Operations
Squadron do, show-and-tell isn't really possible. For the Tactical Air Control Party Airmen of the ASOS, the next best thing is to bring families to the local range and give them a taste of what it is like on the ground.

With some close air support from their friends at the 190th Fighter Squadron, TACPs transformed
Saylor Creek Training Range southwest of Mountain Home Air Force Base into a picnic and viewing area complete with bleachers, barbecue and a front row seat to an A-10 training sortie.

"We're showing our appreciation for our family because they're the ones that endure the most hardships when we deploy and when we come to work out here. So it's really showing them what we do and showing our appreciation and gratitude for them," said 2nd Lt. Gregory Kirk with the 124th ASOS.

From a safe distance, the crowd of Airmen and their families watched as A-10's conducted standard training runs and circled overhead. The day finished with a couple of low angle strafing runs, which gave the audience the unique experience of seeing -- and hearing -- an A-10 fire its main weapon system, the GAU-8/A Avenger cannon.

The sights and sounds brought smiles to those watching and gave them a firsthand look into what their loved ones are doing when they are working their weekend away from home or deployed overseas.