Browsing: air force

The Gaston Gazette of North Carolina has a touching story about the family of Capt. Mark McDowell, a pilot who was killed when his F-15E crashed in Afghanistan two years ago. “Some days, I feel like he could walk right in the front door, and it wouldn’t surprise me, and other days and nights, I know he’s not,” Karen McDowell told the newspaper. “Of course there are certain things that trigger the grief, but my husband and I have learned to share our grief with one another. We have really grown closer during this time than we had ever been…

Chances are if you’re reading this you’re: a) gainfully employed by the U.S. government or draw a pension from the U.S. government; and b) have a few extra bucks to throw around. (And on that latter part, there’s an easy litmus test: You have cable TV? Then you have disposable income.) It’s time to spread some of that dough around. The Air Force is taking part of the Feds Feed Families food-drive campaign, which runs through Aug. 31. The 2,500 folks at Air Force Personnel Center are aiming to raise more than five tons of food and hygiene products. Allow…

The Telegraph has a nice write-up about the people who make sure GPS stays up and humming. The British newspaper profiled the 2nd Space Operations Squadron at Schreiver Air Force Base, Colo., in an article carrying a headline that pretty much sums up the squadron’s contribution to everyday life: “We’d be lost without them.” The article begins with a description of Joshua Williams, a payload systems operator: “Three years ago, it was still illegal for him to buy a drink. Two years before that, he was back home in Virginia learning to drive. And yet today he’s responsible for a…

The Battle Creek Air Show and Balloon Festival in Michigan earlier this month seemed to have a little bit of everything. The Navy’s Blue Angels performed. So did an Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle. Dozens of hot-air balloons took flight. Kids could see white tigers on display. The show also offered something you don’t see too often: One guy pulling a KC-135 by himself. Strongman Mark Kirsch pulled the refueling tanker 120 feet before an awed crowd, according to The Enquirer of Battle Creek, Mich. (For those keeping track, the tanker was assigned to the 54th Air Refueling Squadron from…

Start with a CV-22 Osprey. Throw in an experienced combat controller. Lots of stuff goes bang. A JSOC mission into Pakistan? Nah. Try the latest edition of Transformers. The folks at AFSOC helped make “Transformers: Dark of the Moon” even more action-packed than a usual Michael Bay flick. And people appear to hoover up the action; the movie opened with a $116.4 million showing over the holiday weekend. About 50 airmen from headquarters AFSOC, the 1st Special Operations Wing and other units helped with the filming at Hurlburt Field, Fla., last September. Shooting also took place at Edwards Air Force…

During the “critical days of summer” the Air Force wants you to remember that lawnmowers are dangerous. Cautioning airmen to operate household equipment safely, the Air Force wants you to know that some 68,000 people make trips to the ER for injuries related to power mowers. Some 9,000 of those people hurt are those younger than 18. So don’t forget to watch your fingers, your toes and your kids when you’re starring in your own episode of “Home Improvement.” Argh, argh.

Displaced Minot Air Force Base airmen and their families can expense up 180 days of storage fees that they might have incurred because of the historic flooding of the Souris River that occurred in McHenry, Renville and Ward counties, according base public affairs. Col. James Dawkins Jr., 5th Bomb Wing commander, authorized the reimbursement of property storage and short-distance move expenses incurred by Air Force Global Strike Command Airmen and their families June 29. Dawkins’ order applies to displaced active duty military and dependents whose permanent residence is located within evacuation areas. Additional storage or moving costs exceeding the allotted…

Air Force officials have temporarily halted most permanent change of station moves and temporary duty assignments to Minot Air Force Base, N.D., according to Air Force Personnel, Services and Manpower Public Affairs. Flooding has forced many to evacuate Minot, N.D., prompting the commanders of the 5th Bomb Wing and 91st Missile Wing to request a partial stop movement. Airmen within the U.S. who are projected to move to Minot AFB, and those who have already out-processed but who have not departed their current duty station — except those specifically authorized to continue their move —  should not leave. Air Force civilians…

The Department of Defense announced today that the the Air Force active and reserve components met their  recruiting and retention benchmarks fiscal year-to-date 2011, through May. The Air Force had 18,444 accessions, which was its fiscal year-to-date 2011 recruiting goals.  DoD said the service is on track to meet its fiscal year-to-date 2011 retention goals. The Air National Guard had 4,529 accessions, with a goal of 4,523; while the Air Force Reserve had 6,079 accessions, with a goal of 6,194. DoD said that both components are on target to achieve their fiscal year attrition goals.

Air Force Special Operations Command has a new top officer, and in AFSOC tradition, the new guy is shrouded in a bit of mystery. This much we do know: Lt. Gen Eric Fiel arrived at Hurlburt Field after a stint as the vice commander of U.S. Special operations Command. Previous jobs include plenty of other positions at SOCOM, the deputy gig at the Joint Special Operations Command, 58th Special Operations Wing commander and commander of Air Force Special Operations Forces. But it’s a quote in the press release that makes us think Fiel might want to keep AFSOC’s actions in…

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