CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – A ‘major deployment readiness exercise’ called Eastern Nexus 23 is being held at Westover Air Reserve Base.

Beginning Monday, approximately 500 military and civilian members will train at the 439th Airlift Wing based at Westover Air Reserve Base. The following members also include the following:

  • 514th Air Mobility Wing, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, NJ
  • Army Reserve’s 371st Minimal Care Detachment, Twinsburg, OH
  • 655th Regional Support Group at Westover
  • Michigan Civil Air Patrol combines forces to train as the 439th Air Expeditionary Wing

According to a news release sent to 22News from Westover, the deployment readiness exercise is to improve the ability to operate in austere conditions while providing rapid global mobility. The two-week training includes one week at Westover Air Reserve Base followed by one week at two locations in Michigan:

  • Alpena Combat Readiness Training Center
  • Selfridge Air National Guard Base

A simulated deployment to Palawan Island, Republic of the Philippines will be conducted in the second phase.

“This exercise will address a broad spectrum of the participating unit’s mission capabilities. The first week focused on winning ‘the fight to get to the fight,’ while the second week’s events will improve our skills to train and operate in a contested environment,” said Charles Carlin, 439 AW Inspections Office exercise director. “We have been planning and coordinating this exercise for two years. While we need to be mindful of world events, Eastern Nexus 23 is not the result of recent activity by either North Korea or China.”

The 439th Airlift Wing assigned to Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee operates eight C-5M aircraft that provide global mobility of troops and supplies.

The 514th Air Mobility Wing assigned to McGuire Air Force Base in Burlington County, New Jersey operates KC-10A and C-17 aircraft that provide air mobility through aerial refueling, airlift, aeromedical evacuation, and mobility support.