[LarrysList] MARS Information Bulletin

Larry Staples larrystaples at mac.com
Tue Nov 3 19:01:48 CST 2015

October 31, 2015, twenty-five MARS members from both Army and Air Force teamed up to educate each other and to recruit amateur radio operators who were attending the Halloween Hamfest in Kirkwood, Missouri. The two services also hosted a joint MARS membership training seminar, plus a question and answer session at the conclusion of the event.

AR MARS Region 7 Operations Officer Larry Thompson was on hand to discuss an impending national MARS exercise, November 7-11, which will simulate a direct hit to Earth from a coronal mass ejection-CME.

Thompson, who lives near the New Madrid Fault Line, said he would rather face the consequences of a major earthquake than a CME. “If the earthquake happens you will have a problem, but the outside will be able to help. With a CME, everyone else will be in the same situation you are. ”

Thompson said, “Interoperability will be a major focus on this exercise. ” Amateur radio operators will provide MARS operators with county utility status information. According to the 2013 census, there are 3,143 counties and county-equivalents in the United States. MARS will get reports from as many of them as possible.

At the training seminar MARS members went over various modern computer applications and message types that MARS will use in the exercise. Presenters were Missouri AR MARS Executive Officer Michael Hauan, and Missouri AR MARS State Director Jodie Rouse.

Randy Atkinson, AF MARS Missouri Deputy Director assisted members in the installation of the programs, and provided take-home materials as well. Atkinson and Rouse co-facilitated this MARS Halloween Hamfest event.

Air Force MARS Chief Dave Stapchuk and North Central Divisions Director Mark Allen attended the training, along with AF deputy division director Charlie Hopkins and Division Emergency coordinator Bob Wilson.

Chief Stapchuk commented, “Everything went extremely well. My sincere thanks go to all who organized the MARS event and allowed me the opportunity to participate. This event is great example of the teamwork that exists within AF and Army MARS. ”

Division Director Mark Allen stated, “This joint service MARS meeting in Kirkwood was an excellent opportunity for both services to compare notes which will further enhance our universal mission which is moving traffic for the DoD. Meetings like this are unfortunately rare and it was great to see the comradery between the members. ”

State leadership attendees included AF Missouri Director Jim Duncan, AF Illinois Director Ed Finley, Wisconsin Deputy Director Dennis Knutson, and AR Missouri Administrate Officer Gary Kitchen.
Submitted by:

Jodie Rouse, KDØLDE
Army MARS Region 7 Public Affairs Officer
Missouri State Director
jodie.rouse at att.net

"Life is a grindstone. Whether it grinds us down or polishes us up depends on us."

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