BARNES AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Massachusetts --
The 104th Fighter Wing has been awarded the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for accomplishments during the period of January 2020, to December 2021.
The AFOUA is awarded by the Secretary of the Air Force to numbered units that have distinguished themselves by exceptionally meritorious service or outstanding achievement that clearly sets the unit above and apart from similar units.
An increase in domestic operations played a large part in receiving the award.
104FW Barnestormers provided ongoing security, communication, medical, logistical and safety support to capital civil authorities in Washington D.C. during Task Force Freedom They also joined Joint Task Force Maher and Joint Task Force Powderhorn to provide non-clinical manpower to medical facilities throughout the commonwealth, and aided events such as the Boston Marathon. A total of 197 Airmen were mobilized.
By remaining adaptable, these domestic operation taskings were completed successfully during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the 104FW maintained a 100% mission success rate in its aerospace control alert coverage. This success rate is critical to secure the northeast United States from any airborne threat, providing security for one-quarter of the nation’s population and over one-third of the Gross Domestic Product.
“We are confident in our Airmen’s abilities to adapt to dynamic and challenging conditions, and this scares the enemies of the United States,” said Chief Master Sgt. Stephen Jeffers, 104FW command chief. “The lethality of our organization was validated by the United States Air Force, and we are very proud of the accomplishments of our teammates.”
The wing’s lethality has also been sharpened by over 100 training operations simulating contested environments, enforcing the “accelerate change or lose” mindset and preparing Airmen for peer threats.
“We were extremely busy with domestic operations during the pandemic,” said Col. David ‘Moon’ Halasi-Kun, 104FW commander. “Forging Airmen capable of adapting to any situation has remained one of our top priorities throughout. When called upon, we’re ready.”
The Air Force Outstanding Unit Award was authorized by the Department of the Air Force General Order 1, Jan. 6, 1954. The award has a rich history in the Air Force, and Halasi-Kun said he’s looking to the future with the wing.
“This award enforces that we are on the right path,” said Halasi-Kun. “We never stop striving for improvement. There is no finite end-state where we will cease in our efforts to better serve the commonwealth and the nation. Barnestormers have the watch, and we take pride in forging leaders that are ready to respond to crisis.”