Salvation Army holds Operation “Wings of Hope 2018” to test preparedness for emergencies

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Photo by Will Crooks

On May 7-9, The Salvation Army Greenville Area Command participated in Operation “Wings of Hope 2018.” Operation “Wings of Hope” is a national disaster full-scale exercise that evaluated the Upstate’s response, operation, and communication during times of crisis. The exercise also evaluates partnering agencies around the Upstate.

The three-day simulation took place on property owned by Greenville Spartanburg International Airport. The A C-130 U.S. Cargo Aircraft and a C-17 U.S. Military transport plane were part of the exercise.

Some of the participants included the Federal Communications Commission, the United States Army, the United States Air Force, Civil Air Patrol, Air National Guard, Greenville Community Emergency Response Team, Columbia Fire Department, SC Department of Health and Environmental Control, Fort Jackson EMS and the National Weather Service.

The exercise was designed to allow for maximum participation from federal, state, and local response agencies, while simultaneously providing an opportunity to prepare for emergencies.

The Salvation Army partnered with Bons Secours St. Francis Health System  to provide meals to the participants and first responders. The employees and volunteers served the meals over the course of the event.

Major Pete Costas, Area Commander, says, “We pray that nothing like this ever happens, but it is good to know that there are so many well-trained people ready to selflessly respond. The Salvation Army is always ready to have feet on the ground helping in any way possible.”

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