Military News

The U.S. Army is investigating the death of a 20-year-old infantryman who died Saturday during a live fire training exercise near Fort Greely.

Spc. Nicholas Peter DiMona III, 20, of Medford Lakes, New Jersey, died from a gunshot wound while taking part in training at the Donnelly Training Area, according to a press release issued by the Army on Monday. He was taken by helicopter to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Chugiak-Eagle River residents can expect to see and hear plenty of military air activity through the first week of April as Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson conducts its two-week Polar Force exercise.

The massive exercise “gives squadrons an opportunity to demonstrate their abilities to forward deploy and deliver overwhelming combat airpower,” according to a Facebook post by the Air Force’s 3rd Operations Group, which included photos of a close formation taxi “elephant walk” showing 24 F-22 Raptors, a C-17 Globemaster III and an E-3 Sentry aircraft on the runway.

Stay calm, it’s only a drill.

People living near Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson are likely to see an increase in noise and emergency vehicles during an emergency response exercise Thursday.

According to a press release issued Wednesday, noise from the drill “may carry into the local communities adjacent to JBER.”

An Eagle River sailor is helping lead a movement to keep an ancient belief alive aboard a Navy aircraft carrier.

Earlier this year, Tom Frazier got the call every parent of a service member dreads.

“It was a pretty intense few minutes,” he said.

On the other end of the line, a Marine had just told Frazier his son, Cpl. Tyler Frazier, had been wounded while fighting in Syria.

“It took everything I had not to break down just to hear what the guy was saying to me,” he said.

Municipal officials are in talks with an Oklahoma nonprofit that could result in a big windfall for Chugiak-Eagle River taxpayers and a permanent buffer zone for Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

According to Eagle River-Chugiak Parks and Recreation Department director John Rodda, the department was recently contacted by the Tulsa-based Compatible Lands Foundation (CLF), which according to its website purchases conservation easements “from willing landowners, prohibiting incompatible land uses but allowing open space activities such as farming, ranching, and hunting.”

Police had to call in the troops after a “practice bomb” was found early Sunday morning in the back of a truck parked on an Eagle River street.

According to the Anchorage Police Department, police were called at around 4:27 a.m. on Nov. 11 for a report of a suspicious unoccupied vehicle. When officers arrived, they found what APD described as “a small torpedo” in the bed of a pickup truck.

A ceremony will be held Sunday, Nov. 11 on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in recognition of Veterans Day and the 100-year anniversary of the end of World War I.

The ceremony will be held at the National Guard Armory building at 10:30 a.m., according to a press release by the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. The event is open to the public, and access to the base will be open via the Arctic Valley (Fort Richardson) gate. Current military members are encouraged to wear their dress uniforms.

U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan spent Wednesday making the rounds in Chugiak-Eagle River.

He also ate a few, too.

Sullivan sat down for pepperoni pizza at the Eagle River Ale House, where he also made off with a handful of homemade cookies during a casual pop-in at the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce luncheon. Sen. Sullivan also made stops at the Chugiak-Eagle River Senior Center and the Alaska Laborers Training Center in Chugiak during an upbeat spin through the community.

A fighter jet made an emergency landing Wednesday on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

According to a press release issued by the base Wednesday evening, an F-22 Raptor assigned to the 3rd Air Wing made the emergency landing at around 1 p.m. The pilot was able to get out of the jet safely and there were no injuries reported.

On Thursday, the base provided a brief update saying the emergency landing was due to a landing gear malfunction.

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