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Yellowknife Deployment For Training sharpens Oregon Civil Engineers skills

Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert, 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES), operates a excavator to load rock and other materials used to build a new trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northern Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert, 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES), operates a excavator to load rock and other materials used to build a new trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northern Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Airmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) cut and clear a pathway to connect the trail around Niven Lake at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Airmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) cut and clear a pathway to connect the trail around Niven Lake at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert (left), 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES), operates a excavator to load rock and other materials used to build a new trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northern Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert (left), 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES), operates a excavator to load rock and other materials used to build a new trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northern Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Members of Oregon Air National Guard’s 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron and Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) work together to clear cut trees and other materials to help create a pathway for the expanded Niven Lake Trail, July 24, 2017, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for similar training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Members of Oregon Air National Guard’s 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron and Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) work together to clear cut trees and other materials to help create a pathway for the expanded Niven Lake Trail, July 24, 2017, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for similar training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Daniel Hagemier, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers Squadron (left), and Tech. Sgt. Charles Jedda (right), move a large role of stabling material to provide a base for rock and other materials, extending a public trail at Niven Lake at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The Civil Engineer Airmen are spending two-weeks in Canada working with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Daniel Hagemier, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers Squadron (left), and Tech. Sgt. Charles Jedda (right), move a large role of stabling material to provide a base for rock and other materials, extending a public trail at Niven Lake at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The Civil Engineer Airmen are spending two-weeks in Canada working with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, Portland, Oregon, work to construct a new pedestrian friendly trail at Niven Lake in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada during their two-week Deployment For Training, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, Portland, Oregon, work to construct a new pedestrian friendly trail at Niven Lake in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada during their two-week Deployment For Training, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Senior Airman Andrew Wolf, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES) takes a short break to observe the delivery of more materials for the trail extension he and other members of the CES are working on at Niven Lake Trail, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Senior Airman Andrew Wolf, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES) takes a short break to observe the delivery of more materials for the trail extension he and other members of the CES are working on at Niven Lake Trail, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Daniel Hagemier, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers, drives a front end loader to build a public trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. As one of many projects during the 142nd CES Deployment for Training (DFT) the Niven Lake trail will connect two unfinished parts providing greater access to the community. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Daniel Hagemier, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers, drives a front end loader to build a public trail at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. As one of many projects during the 142nd CES Deployment for Training (DFT) the Niven Lake trail will connect two unfinished parts providing greater access to the community. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, Portland, Oregon, work to construct a new pedestrian friendly trail (picture left) at Niven Lake in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada during their two-week Deployment For Training, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, Portland, Oregon, work to construct a new pedestrian friendly trail (picture left) at Niven Lake in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada during their two-week Deployment For Training, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Tyler O;Bryant (right), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, discusses a tree core sample with Canadian Armed Forces Private Corey Blackmore (left) during a rest break while clearing trees at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 24, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Tyler O;Bryant (right), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, discusses a tree core sample with Canadian Armed Forces Private Corey Blackmore (left) during a rest break while clearing trees at Niven Lake, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 24, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard 142nd Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) and Canadian Armed Forces leaders discuss the Niven Lake trail extension, and other ongoing construction and repair projects that their members are working on around the City of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 20, 2017.The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard 142nd Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) and Canadian Armed Forces leaders discuss the Niven Lake trail extension, and other ongoing construction and repair projects that their members are working on around the City of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 20, 2017.The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) along with Canadian Armed Forces Construction Engineers from Cold Lake, Alberta, gather for a group photograph after their two-week Deployment for Training assigment in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 26, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel)
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Oregon Air National Guardsmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) along with Canadian Armed Forces Construction Engineers from Cold Lake, Alberta, gather for a group photograph after their two-week Deployment for Training assigment in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 26, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Tyler O'Bryant (left), and Staff Sgt. Zachariah Lewis (right), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, apply paint to  a shower repair project during their Deployment For Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 27, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Tyler O'Bryant (left), and Staff Sgt. Zachariah Lewis (right), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, apply paint to a shower repair project during their Deployment For Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 27, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Benjamin Schultz (right), makes adjustments to newly installed plumbing fixtures, while Airman 1st Class Joshua Bietschek (left), observes the procedures as part of his ongoing training, as the two members assigned to the 142nd Civil Engineer Squadron work on a variety of construction and repair projects during their Deployment For Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Benjamin Schultz (right), makes adjustments to newly installed plumbing fixtures, while Airman 1st Class Joshua Bietschek (left), observes the procedures as part of his ongoing training, as the two members assigned to the 142nd Civil Engineer Squadron work on a variety of construction and repair projects during their Deployment For Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon Airmen are also collaborating with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, who are also deployed to Yellowknife for training. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard members along with Canadian Military members from Cold Lake, Alberta, enjoy lunch together during their joint Deployment for Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 20, 2017. The Civil Engineer Airmen are spending two-weeks in Canada working with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, on a variety of projects during their DFT. (Picured from left to right) Tech. Sgt. David Sherman, Staff Sgt. Tyler O'Bryant, Staff Sgt. Michael Templeton, Private Corey Blackmore and Corporal Kyle Burrow. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard members along with Canadian Military members from Cold Lake, Alberta, enjoy lunch together during their joint Deployment for Training (DFT) in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 20, 2017. The Civil Engineer Airmen are spending two-weeks in Canada working with Canadian Armed Forces members from Cold Lake, Alberta, Canada, on a variety of projects during their DFT. (Picured from left to right) Tech. Sgt. David Sherman, Staff Sgt. Tyler O'Bryant, Staff Sgt. Michael Templeton, Private Corey Blackmore and Corporal Kyle Burrow. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Micheal Templeton (left), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES), works in tandem with Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Private Jacob Hodgin (right) as they install a new heating fuel tank to the Joint Task Force North (JTFN) Headquarters building, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 19, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Micheal Templeton (left), assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES), works in tandem with Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Private Jacob Hodgin (right) as they install a new heating fuel tank to the Joint Task Force North (JTFN) Headquarters building, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 19, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Christoper Black, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) works to install new lights at the Joint Task Force North (JTFN) Headquarters building, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Christoper Black, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) works to install new lights at the Joint Task Force North (JTFN) Headquarters building, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Brandon Bingham, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) moves a scissor lift into place to install new lights for the 440th Squadron/Escadrille hangar, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Brandon Bingham, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) moves a scissor lift into place to install new lights for the 440th Squadron/Escadrille hangar, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. The Oregon CES members are deployed for two-weeks for training along with CAF members from Cold Lake, Alberta. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Master Sgt. Travis McDaniel, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) inspects a hangar light fixture for replacement at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Master Sgt. Travis McDaniel, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) inspects a hangar light fixture for replacement at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 21, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Master Sgt. Travis McDaniel, (left) assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) and Canadian Armed Forces Lt. Jordan Vadala (right) construct concrete form to install a new lighting project at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 19, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Master Sgt. Travis McDaniel, (left) assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) and Canadian Armed Forces Lt. Jordan Vadala (right) construct concrete form to install a new lighting project at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 19, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Christopher Walley, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) removes wooden concrete forms as part of a lighting project at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 24, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Staff Sgt. Christopher Walley, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) removes wooden concrete forms as part of a lighting project at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 24, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

The Canadian Armed Forces 440th Squadron/Escadrille new exterior lighting project eliminates the Canadian and Royal Air Force Flags finished by the Oregon Air National Guard's 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron during their two-week Deployment to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 26, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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The Canadian Armed Forces 440th Squadron/Escadrille new exterior lighting project eliminates the Canadian and Royal Air Force Flags finished by the Oregon Air National Guard's 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron during their two-week Deployment to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 26, 2017. (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert, 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, points out the last project still pending completion as the Deployment For Training comes to a conclusion in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 28, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert, 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, points out the last project still pending completion as the Deployment For Training comes to a conclusion in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 28, 2017. Over 30 CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Mark Heyck, Mayor of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, address the Airmen of the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron as they conclude their two-week Deployment For Training in Yellowknife, July 28, 2017. Mayor Heyck thanked the Oregon Guardsmen for their work around the city, in particular, the extension of the Niven Lake Trail and the Wildcat Cafe.(U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Mark Heyck, Mayor of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, address the Airmen of the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron as they conclude their two-week Deployment For Training in Yellowknife, July 28, 2017. Mayor Heyck thanked the Oregon Guardsmen for their work around the city, in particular, the extension of the Niven Lake Trail and the Wildcat Cafe.(U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

Oregon Air National Guard Senior Airman Andrew Wolf, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES) uses a front end loader to transport rock and gravel to the Nivan Lake Trail at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)
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Oregon Air National Guard Senior Airman Andrew Wolf, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineers (CES) uses a front end loader to transport rock and gravel to the Nivan Lake Trail at Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, July 18, 2017. The CES members are spending two-weeks in Canada working on a variety of projects during their Deployment for Training (DFT). (U.S. Air National Guard photo/Master Sgt. John Hughel, 142nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs)

YELLOWKNIFE, Canada --

The arrival to the Northwest Territories of 30 Oregon Air National Guard Civil Engineers, delivered a diverse range of maintenance skill sets to complete repairs and construction assignments during a Deployment for Training (DFT) July 16 to 29, 2017.

The airmen from the 142nd Fighter Wing Civil Engineer Squadron (CES) were joined in Yellowknife by a dozen proficient Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Construction Engineers deploying from 4 Wing, Cold Lake, Alberta, as the two units integrated on a variety of projects that encompassed both military facilities and two large civic projects in the city.

“We meet regularly with the City of Yellowknife and federal departments, and the city asked us how could DND (Department of National Defense) contribute to the city,” explained Canadian Armed Forces Maj. Josh Van Tine.

As a Construction Engineer officer assigned since last August in Yellowknife, part of Van Tine’s efforts involves coordinating activities with the Joint Task Force North (JTFN) Headquarters in the area ‘North of 60’ (north of 60-degree latitude).

“In the past, troop labor-based projects have been beneficial to the community, so when this DFT was identified, the city showed us projects that fit the criteria, and the 142nd met those needs with their skill specifications,” said Van Tine.

Taking a tour of all the projects soon after arrival, the CAF and CES airmen were broken into teams based on trade skills. Plumbers were assigned to bathroom upgrades, heavy equipment operators tackled the Niven Lake Trail, electricians began installing new emergency lighting at the JTFN Headquarters as well new hangar fixtures at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille, and structures tradesmen supported multiple projects at three different sites around the city.

The benefits of having U.S. and Canadian troops working together are not only cost effective for DFT assignments but also factor into strengthening the bi-national mission of NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command).

“We work together overseas, so it only makes sense we work together on projects in our own counties, and it prepares everyone for overseas deployments,” said Van Tine, describing the impact of the combined joint force approach.

“There just is no substitute for troop labor; you can get a contractor to do some of these projects, but the expertise, professionalism and pride in work really comes through with military journeymen and craftsmen,” he said.

“You [Civil Engineers] don’t have profit as a bottom line; you guys have pride in your work.”

Building that sense of pride and accomplishment is a core element for DFT missions. The 142nd CES had not deployed together since its last expedition to Magnolia, Romania, in 2015, where they undertook restoration work on a medical treatment center.

“These DFT trips are important on several fronts,” explained Master Sgt. Ken Safe, 142nd Fighter Wing CES Operational Superintendent. “This is how we train, recruit and retain our members, because the team building during these trips allows us to get the job done downrange in the future.”

Beginning in January of this year, Safe, along with Chief Master Sgt. Ronald Eckert, conducted a site visit to the area, sizing up the projects, materials, and manpower capacities needed to complete the two-week endeavor.

“We had a couple of CONUS (Contiguous United States) projects available to us, one in California and elsewhere, but we decided that coming to Yellowknife would allow us to build on the coattails from the Wing’s [Operational Group] deployment here a few months before,” Safe said.

The Yellowknife DFT allowed the 142nd CES to bring a full-range of professional trades. Since all the airmen have security clearances, they could work on a variety of projects at the JTFN Headquarters, including a full range of lighting repairs and upgrades, along with installing a new air conditioner unit, a building fuel tank and upgrades in the officer’s mess.

A second group of electricians took on two lighting projects at the 440th Squadron/Escadrille hangar. Upgrading the lighting in the main hangar allowed for more energy- efficient fixtures to be added and the unit’s flagpole to illuminate the Canadian and Royal Air Force Flags continuously.

For working in the PAB (Personnel Accommodations Building), plumbers and carpenters had to retrofit a dozen showers units, often scheduling them around the staff’s daily use of the bathrooms and other facilities.

“Finding the right balance of tradesmen is always the most difficult part when you need 30 members on these deployments,” Safe elaborated. “We never really know how long one project will take, or if we’ll have enough of one trade skill set or if all the supplies show up on time; everything has to come together in a two-week window.”

Yet one of the most challenging projects during the DFT was the Niven Lake Trail extension, where connecting two cutoff trails’ ends had to be tied together to complete the pathway. The project required heavy equipment operators to work long hours, forming areas into the marsh, to create a user-friendlier route around larger rock formations.

After scouting the location, Chief Eckert estimated the trail would be around 600 to 800 feet in distance, but the terrain had hidden challenges. During the construction, trees needed to be cleared and extra materials were needed to fill the marsh, increasing the width and length of the trail when finished.

“It took almost the entire two-weeks to complete and was slightly over 1,000 feet in distance,” he said. “The biggest challenge was working with the size of equipment, and the further you go down the trail with materials, the distance also increases per trip.”

Adjustment took place as the pathway moved forward. Trees were cut and hauled away by CAF and CES airmen, while the route was slightly extended to keep the elevation consistent.

With over 22 years of experience as a heavy equipment operator, Eckert saved his praise for this project’s success on Senior Airman Andrew Wolf and Staff Sgt. Daniel Hagemier.

“I am really proud of those two guys; they worked long days and were so motivated to not only finish this trail for the community, but also do it right,” Eckert said. “For me, this is probably my eighth and most likely final DFT; it was a blast!”

On the last day of the deployment, the tired but content crew gathered for dinner and for accolades from local leadership at the PAB. Joining them was Yellowknife Mayor Mark Heyck.

“The Niven Lake Trail is a very proud part of the overall trail system in Yellowknife,” Heyck emphasized to the city’s desired outcome with the extension. “Accessibility is a high priority for the citizens of ours who may have trouble getting around on the conventional trail system.”

“We are very grateful for the contribution that you made in our community, and for the continued service you have given back to your country and other countries around the world.”