JTF 115: California Guardsman join forces for COVID-19 response

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Jeffrey Schultze
  • 195th Wing Public Affairs

The COVID-19 pandemic is requiring an unprecedented response in the state of California. One key piece is Joint Task Force 115, which is leveraging and bridging the unique skill sets of two units to sustain state-wide food bank operations and medical supply chains. The 195th Air National Guard Wing at Beale Air Force Base brings expertise as a unit geographically located across the state and the Army National Guard’s 115th Regional Support Group from Roseville, California are experts in sustained supply operations.

The Task Force is one aspect of a larger state-wide effort at providing sustainment of vital services and resources to millions of Californians. As guardsman task force members bring both military and civilian skill sets to the table.

“It’s a collection of skill sets that you couldn’t find anywhere else. Because we have our military training and background, but we also have high level people in civilian companies,” said Army Maj. Thomas Murphy, 115th JTF operations officer. “It’s unlike any other organization I have been a part of.”

The task force is delivering food to underserved populations daily at six foodbanks across the state.

“We are supporting food bank warehouse operations, ensuring those foodbanks continue to run, said Murphy. “They normally run with volunteer manpower, but some of those volunteers aren’t able to come in because of the COVID virus threat.”

The JTF 115 team located in Roseville are overseeing those ground operations.

“Were are essentially a conduit between state headquarters and our men and women out there in the field at the food banks and medical warehouses,” said Air Force Master Sgt. Martin Evans JTF 115 battle captain. “We track those assets, personnel, equipment and vehicles, and make sure they are allocated efficiently.”

In addition to food delivery they are moving medical equipment to needed areas.

“There are multiple medical warehouse locations, and with those we are providing manpower and logistics of that manpower to move equipment around the state,” said Evans.

The task force is standing ready to continue its mission as long as it takes.

From the California Governor on down, there is an emphasis that everyone in the state is a partner in the fight against COVID-19 and the state is looking for citizens that are ready and able to volunteer for activities such as delivering meals, working at food banks, donating to shelters, and donating blood.

“There is an even greater urgency to what we are doing because we our supporting our communities,” said Murphy.

For information about California COVID-19 response volunteer opportunities go to: www.serve.ca.gov