Back to Top Skip to main content

AFMES participates in Operation Joint Recovery, introduces MACRMS

U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Bryan Platt (right), Armed Forces Medical Examiner System forensic pathologist, demonstrates an examination at a simulated Mortuary Affairs Contaminated Remains Mitigation Site during Operation Joint Recovery exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. Platt familiarized participants in recovery and processing of contaminated remains. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo) U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Bryan Platt (right), Armed Forces Medical Examiner System forensic pathologist, demonstrates an examination at a simulated Mortuary Affairs Contaminated Remains Mitigation Site during Operation Joint Recovery exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. Platt familiarized participants in recovery and processing of contaminated remains. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del. — More than 200 active duty and reserve service members from the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines along with personnel from the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System participated in Operation Joint Recovery held at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, March 7-10, 2018.

The Department of Defense Mortuary Affairs exercise involved search and recovery missions in tactical and non-tactical environments, operating a Mortuary Affairs Contaminated Remains Mitigation Site, establishing and operating a Mortuary Affairs Collection Point, establishing and operating a Theater Mortuary Evacuation Point.

AFMES primary role in the exercise was to operate MACRMS and familiarize participants in contaminated remains recovery, processing and procedural guidance and provide an operational assessment.

Service members prepare to remove a simulated battlefield casualty during Operation Joint Recovery exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. The exercise involved Search and Recovery missions in tactical and non-tactical environments. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)Service members prepare to remove a simulated battlefield casualty during Operation Joint Recovery exercise at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. The exercise involved Search and Recovery missions in tactical and non-tactical environments. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)

“This was a great opportunity for our AFMES staff to share their knowledge of MACRMS with different services as well as local and national agencies,” said U.S. Army Col. Louis N. Finelli, AFMES director. “MACRMS was developed to act as a stop gap to a relativity new scenario, recovery of contaminated remains.”

Contaminated remains are causalities from a possible Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive attack.

Finelli said that the gap of not being able to return contaminated remains was first introduced during the first years of Operation Iraqi Freedom, but the idea of a MACRMS has evolved over the past 2-3 years as technology and procedures are constantly evolving.

“In the past two years, we have made tremendous strides in the MACRMS process, but we are always examining for ways to improve the mission of bringing our troops home,” said Finelli. 

Participants had to put these strides to the test during the exercise as members were subjected to a simulated CBRNE attack and had to utilize techniques, tactics and procedures developed by the Joint Mortuary Affairs Center.

Application of protective suits, gloves, breathing filtration apparatuses, wireless cameras, and the use of drones were all utilized for safety and security during the simulated recovery of service members.

“It was definitely a teaching experience, for most, it was their first time seeing a MACRMS in the field,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Bryan Platt, AFMES, forensic pathologist. “I tried to demonstrate what they would encounter during a real-world scenario.”

AFMES also provided Medical Examiners, Investigators and Mortuary Affairs Specialists to the exercise.

Service members transport a simulated battlefield casualty during a simulated Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive (CBRNE) attack at Operation Joint Recovery exercise on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. The joint exercise featured members from the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines as well as multiple civilian agencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)Service members transport a simulated battlefield casualty during a simulated Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and Explosive (CBRNE) attack at Operation Joint Recovery exercise on Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J., Mar. 10, 2018. The joint exercise featured members from the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines as well as multiple civilian agencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)

“Most people don’t know how U.S. service member causalities are recovered in foreign conflicts overseas or stateside,” said Jairo E. Portalatin, AFMES, medicolegal death investigator. “It can be a very sensitive process but we owe it to our service members to train and get it right.”

According to Mike Leone, AFMES, safety, environmental and occupational health manager, who acted as the exercise incident commander, said in addition to the MACRMS, scenarios also included a downed aircraft, a tornado disaster as well as combat search and recovery missions.

In each case, participants had to locate, recover and process simulated human remains, sometimes weighing more than 200 lbs. 

“These exercises and training scenarios are extremely beneficial for us,” said U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Keith A. Norman, Detachment Personnel Retrieval and Processing Company Combat Logistics Regiment 45, logistics chief. “For some of our younger Marines, it’s the first time they’ve worked in a joint environment.”

Finelli said that integration of multiple organizations in a joint environment is a key focus of these types of exercises. 

“By conducting these exercises, we hope to introduce to our service members the experience and training needed to support worldwide contingency operations and disaster response operations.”

Disclaimer: Re-published content may have been edited for length and clarity. Read original post.

You also may be interested in...

Folklore vampire possibly identified

Article
8/12/2019
Dr. Kristen E. Pearlstein, Collections Manager, National Museum of Health and Medicine displays remains of “JB-55” during a Science Café at the museum, Silver Spring, Maryland. “JB-55” remains were that of a suspected “vampire” in the mid-1800s. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Robert M. Trujillo)

According to legend, residents of Jewett City, Connecticut, were being terrorized by recently deceased vampires

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

Colony Glacier: Joint team unearths lost service members

Article
7/17/2019
Recovery team members traverse Colony Glacier, Alaska, June 2019. The recovery team was searching for remains from a C-124 Globemaster II that crashed into Gannett Mountain, Alaska, on Nov. 22, 1952, while flying from McChord Air Force Base, Washington, to Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska resulting in the loss of 52 service members. (Courtesy photo)

This is part one of a two-part series on the Colony Glacier recovery efforts

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

Histology: Where art and science merge

Article
6/13/2019
Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Tyler Wiedmeyer, Armed Forces Medical Examiner System histotechnichian, looks at slides of tissues under a microscope before handing them off to a medical examiner June 6, 2019. The stained tissues help medical examiners see down to the cellular level for a diagnosis of cause of death. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Without a histotechnician, tissue processing would take much longer to be completed

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System Consultation Request Form

Form/Template
5/22/2019

Medical information received is considered during the consultative process and is used to form a database for education and research in pathology.

Recommended Content:

Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner | Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

AFRSSIR Supply Order Request

Form/Template
5/22/2019

Fill out this request to place and order with the Armed Forces Repository of Specimen Sample for the Identification of Human Remains

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Repository of Specimen Samples for the Identification of Remains (AFRSSIR) | Specimen Collection Supplies Ordering Instructions | Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

AFMES celebrates lab week

Article
5/8/2019
The purpose of lab week is to increase public awareness of the importance of laboratory professionals and their role in clinical diagnostics and medicine. The exceptional efforts and behind-the-scenes work of laboratories is essential to protecting public health. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

AFMES celebrated its lab week by embracing science and lab techs

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

Dignity, reverence, respect: The mortuary affairs specialist

Article
4/18/2019
Army Cpl. Daveson Tamanyon, 54th Quartermaster Company mortuary affairs specialist, lays out a U.S. Army uniform during a training exercise at the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System, Dover Air Force Base, Delaware. Soldiers in this career field perform duties related to deceased personnel, including searching for fallen and missing service members, helping to disinter remains and assist in the preparation and preservation of remains. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Soldiers in this career field perform duties related to deceased personnel

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

AFMES, DPAA shares missions with service members, families

Article
2/6/2019
Todd Livick, Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency Outreach and Communications director, speaks to U.S. Army Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape instructors about the DPAA mission at the U.S. Army S.E.R.E. school, Fort Rucker, Alabama. The DPAA and the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System provided information on their respective missions and held question and answer session with the Soldiers to provide a better understanding about the two agencies. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

They’re all here for the same reason; to bring their loved one home

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

Positive identification is assured

Article
11/21/2018
Air Force Tech. Sgt. Ricky Penuelaz, 59th Medical Wing lab technician, uses a pipette to put blood on an Air Force trainee’s DNA card. The Armed Forces Medical Examiner System-Armed Forces Repository of Specimen Samples of the Identification of Remains inspected Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, on the collection of DNA cards. AFMES-AFRSSIR is responsible for managing, coordinating and maintaining the collection of DNA blood reference cards for all active duty, reserve, and National Guard service members. This is done when service members first enter the military and is collected at one of nine basic training sites, dependent on their branch of service. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

The goal of the DNA cards is to never have an ‘unknown soldier’ or unknown military member ever again

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

AFMES participates in 'Safe and Sound' week

Article
8/27/2018
Air Force Tech Sgt. Aisuluu Alford (left) and Army Staff Sgt. Joseph Tutt, both Armed Forces Medical Examiner System forensic toxicology laboratory technicians, grab supplies out of the Shelter-In-Place Kit during a Shelter-In-Place exercise. The exercise was part of Safe and Sound week where AFMES personnel were able to engage in different safety activities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

Safe and Sound Week is a nationwide campaign to raise awareness and understanding of safety and health programs within the workplace

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

AFMES DoD DNA Operations Fact Sheet 2018

Fact Sheet
8/22/2018

This Fact Sheet describes the purpose of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System's Department of Defense DNA Operations

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner | DoD DNA Operations | DNA Identification Laboratory

AFMES DoD DNA Lab receives perfect score

Article
8/6/2018
Sean Patterson, quality management section DNA analyst, checks expiration dates on reagents in the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System – Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory. AFDIL recently underwent a quality assessment where they received zero findings of nonconformance for the first time. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

This was the first time AFDIL has received zero findings during a quality assessment

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System

AFMES embraces resiliency

Article
7/9/2018
Col. Louis Finelli, the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System director, talks with AFMES personnel during a resiliency day at Dover International Speedway, Dover, Del., May 24, 2018. Finelli talked about the importance of coming together as a family to be able to destress and be more resilient. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Nicole Leidholm)

AFMES town hall focused on workplace and summer safety, security awareness and resiliency

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner

AFMES DNA FAQs 2018

Fact Sheet
6/27/2018

This Fact Sheet describes the purpose of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System's Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory.

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner | DoD DNA Operations | DNA Identification Laboratory

AFMES Fact Sheet 2018

Fact Sheet
6/7/2018

This Fact Sheet describes the purpose of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System.

Recommended Content:

Armed Forces Medical Examiner System | Office of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner | DoD DNA Operations | Forensic Toxicology
<< < 1 2 > >> 
Showing results 1 - 15 Page 1 of 2

DHA Address: 7700 Arlington Boulevard | Suite 5101 | Falls Church, VA | 22042-5101

Some documents are presented in Portable Document Format (PDF). A PDF reader is required for viewing; Download a PDF Reader or learn more about PDFs.