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Spec. Prep.: 509th OSS Airman trains potential special operations Airmen

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, poses with his gear at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo., Jan. 24, 2018. As a SERE specialist, Fore trains Airmen by leading parachuting, water survival and field survival classes to ensure the Airmen are prepared for different situations they could be faced with. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, counts the number of sit-ups Staff Sgt. John Mapes, a desk sergeant assigned to the 509th Security Forces Squadron, does during a qualifying Physical Ability Stamina Test Jan. 17, 2018, at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. Mapes was tested on multiple areas of fitness like pushups, sit-ups, pull-ups and running in order to qualify to cross train into Tactical Air Control Party’s training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, right, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, begins to time Staff Sgt. John Mapes, a desk sergeant assigned to the 509th Security Forces Squadron, on a mile and a half run Jan. 17, 2018, at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. Mapes took a Physical Ability Stamina Test in order to see if he is physically qualified to cross train into Tactical Air Control Party specialist’s training. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, records the results of a Physical Ability Stamina Test on Jan. 17, 2018, at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. Fore trains Airmen so they can physically qualify to cross train into a special operations career field’s training of their choice like Tactical Air Control Party specialists, Explosive Ordnance Disposal technicians and more. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, center, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, Senior Airman Tyler McConnell, left, and Senior Airman Matthew Cline, right, both Explosive Ordnance Disposal team members assigned to the 509th Civil Engineering Squadron, pose in their gear at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo., Jan. 24, 2018. Fore trains with multiple Airmen to help them cross train and prepare for a special operations career field such as pararescue and combat control. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape (SERE) specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, displays his gear at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo., Jan. 24, 2018. Fore is one of two SERE specialists at Whiteman who train Airmen to be prepared for any situation that can range from water survival to parachuting classes. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

Special Operations training with Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, poses while wearing his green beret Jan. 24, 2018, at Whiteman Air Force Base, Mo. The green beret with the device is specific to the SERE career field. Specialists in other careers such as security forces, pararescue and combat control wear a different colored beret with a different device or patch on it. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Taylor Phifer)

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- Another day with hours spent in the gym running, swimming, lifting and sweating, doing all he can to help change Airmen’s lives. Staying focused on their fitness programs in order to get them where they need to be. Seeing the Airmen progress from the constant work and dedication. Pushing these people to their limits to prepare them for what’s to come in their future careers.

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Eddie Fore, a Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialist assigned to the 509th Operations Support Squadron, spends his personal time training with Airmen at Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, to help them get the opportunity to cross train into a special operations career field.

“I started helping people cross train into special operations careers back in 2010 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, and immediately starting training Airmen when I moved to Whiteman,” said Fore.

Fore trains Airmen to take a Physical Ability Stamina Test that includes fitness aspects like running, swimming and physical strength. When someone is ready to take the PAST, Fore will time and record their results. Airmen must meet the specific requirements of the specialty they are applying for.

“It is the first thing members need to complete in order to qualify for applying to a special operations career,” said Fore. “Even though the standards are low in comparison to what they will actually be doing in selection and in their various pipelines, it is still a difficult process and prepares them for what they will be doing down the line.”

Being a noncommissioned officer, husband, father, trainer and a graduate student, Fore stays busy. He balances his time between work, family and school to ensure he accomplishes everything, while still reserving time to help Airmen with their cross training goals.

“At any given time I am working with around two to five people on how to properly train,” said Fore. “I’ll be writing strength and conditioning plans, mentoring members on the rigors of the different battlefield Airmen or the other service’s special operations jobs, getting them into the right career field for them and their families, as well as preparing them to have the resiliency to make it through training and be ready for the lifestyle.”

The people Fore trains with are dedicated to taking the time to improve themselves and to become ready for a special operations career.

“I’ve been training with Fore for about seven months to prepare to cross train into special operations,” said Airman 1st Class Levin Wilson, a security forces member assigned to the 509th Security Forces Squadron. “Training with him has helped me learn how to push through and get ready to try to cross train.”

Not even below freezing weather and a snow covered track will stop Fore from mentoring and working out with Airmen. He uses every day to help and better prepare Airmen to cross train into a special operations career.

To prepare members both mentally and physically, Fore works with them to build strength, stamina and mental perseverance by rucking with 40 to 60 pounds on the member’s back.

“Depending on the career field the member wants to get into, we can work on running and rucking programs, overall strength programs in the gym, land navigation in the field with map and compass work, and pool sessions,” said Fore. “Pool sessions are always a lot of fun and really test the people I train. It helps them get ready for selection and ultimately dive school.”

No matter the special operations career, combat control, pararescue or any other, it takes a lot of mental preparation in order to be ready.

“Preparing mentally is everything,” said Fore. “Having the resiliency to push through and understand not only what the pipeline is like, but more importantly what the career field will demand of you is the most important part. I always tell people the training is the easy part, be ready to work hard for the duration of your career.”

While training Airmen to cross train is something Fore does off-duty, it’s something that makes him proud. He enjoys doing it to help the special operations community and his fellow wingmen.

“Seeing people progress mentally and physically is my favorite part of all this,” said Fore. “When I write training plans for people and they truly push themselves and get into career fields they want, it’s a win in my book. I feel like I owe it to the guys and gals who want to dedicate their lives to help others and I can do my part by getting them started on the right path to make it through to a special operations career.”