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Birds of a feather host morale event together

Airmen from the 510th Fighter Squadron and the 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit paint a wall at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. Repainting the wall was part of the Buzzard Unity event which aimed to  boost morale and camaraderie.  (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

Airmen from the 510th Fighter Squadron and the 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit paint a wall at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. Repainting the wall was part of the Buzzard Unity event which aimed to boost morale and camaraderie. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Marco Elbo, 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit dedicated crew chief, demonstrates F-16 Fighting Falcon maintenance steps to U.S. Air Force 1st Lt. Nathan Meyer,  510th Fighter Squadron pilot, at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The 510th FS and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit joined together for a Buzzard Unity event to bolster their working relationship. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Marco Elbo, 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit dedicated crew chief, demonstrates F-16 Fighting Falcon maintenance steps to U.S. Air Force 1st Lt. Nathan Meyer, 510th Fighter Squadron pilot, at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The 510th FS and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit joined together for a Buzzard Unity event to bolster their working relationship. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

A pilot from the 510th Fighter Squadron takes notes while maintenance Airmen explain the upkeep process of an F-16 Fighting Falcon at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The 510th FS and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit joined together for a Buzzard Unity event to bolster their working relationship. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

A pilot from the 510th Fighter Squadron takes notes while maintenance Airmen explain the upkeep process of an F-16 Fighting Falcon at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The 510th FS and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit joined together for a Buzzard Unity event to bolster their working relationship. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Christopher Soldati,  510th Maintenance Unit weapons load crew member, paints a buzzard on a wall at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The wall was painted as a morale booster during a Buzzard Unity event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Christopher Soldati, 510th Maintenance Unit weapons load crew member, paints a buzzard on a wall at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 13, 2020. The wall was painted as a morale booster during a Buzzard Unity event. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

Airmen participate in an inflatable boxing match during a Buzzard Unity event at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 14, 2020. Airmen from the 510th Fighter Squadron and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron came together for a two-day event to build morale and improve their working relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

Airmen participate in an inflatable boxing match during a Buzzard Unity event at Aviano Air Base, Italy, Aug. 14, 2020. Airmen from the 510th Fighter Squadron and 510th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron came together for a two-day event to build morale and improve their working relationships. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Caleb House)

AVIANO AIR BASE, Italy --

The 31st Fighter Wing’s vision is to be the Air Force’s most combat ready, go-to Fighter Wing. Getting our jets in the air is a priority and requires Airmen from various units throughout Aviano to get the mission done.

As a way to increase morale and bolster their relationship, Airmen from the 510th Fighter Squadron and the 510th Aircraft Maintenance Unit recently participated in a Buzzard Unity event. Airmen from both units learned about what it’s like to be on the other side of the F-16 Fighting Falcon and how their job effects one another.

510th AMU leadership felt it was important to hold an event to boost maintainer and operator unity, said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Kyle Nowicki, 510th AMU aircraft section chief.

Maintenance Airmen took this opportunity to go over technical details about the upkeep process for the F-16 with the pilots. They went over details on allowable wear of tires, how to check the oil and even how to refuel the jet.

“It was a great opportunity to work with maintenance personnel to learn how to perform basic maintenance on the aircraft,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Tyler Rico, a 510th FS pilot. “[This] would be required of us to ensure that we can reliably launch and recover aircraft in an Agile Combat Employment environment, when maintenance and support resources are limited.”

The pilots also held discussions with the maintainers covering different topics such as weapons employment and a new nose door initiative. The nose door initiative has Airmen researching the history of aircraft tail numbers to eventually paint relevant artwork on the nose door of the jets.  

The Buzzard Unity event was more than just briefings and maintenance, the two units joined together to personalize a wall at the northwest end of the runway. Once the purple letters stretched from top to bottom and the wall read ‘Buzzards Rule’ they were done.

“The importance of these two days was to provide maintainers and operators with valuable training to enhance the ACE mission, along with [boosting] camaraderie,” said Nowicki.