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Members of the 3rd Airlift Squadron at Dover AFB, Del., and 621st Contingency Response Wing at JB McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., came together to practice semi-prepared runway operations at Fort AP Hill, Va., according to a Dover release. Fort AP Hill offers an assault strip that can accommodate the C-17, and training there saves both East Coast units the costs of having to fly to California for these drills, states the July 1 release. "This training makes it so we can get our bigger aircraft and take equipment or personnel closer to the fight," said SSgt. Ryan Thompson, 3rd AS evaluator loadmaster. It also validates the McGuire airmen's ability to open, secure, and operate airfields in austere environments, states the release. "It was a great opportunity to improve our skill sets," said Capt. Dan Morgan, chief of flight safety in Dover's 436th Airlift Wing safety office. SPRO involves operating, often in the dark, from a runway that is not paved and has a surface such as dirt or crushed stone. The training took place June 17-21. (Dover report by A1C Ashlin Federick)