Above and Beyond
By Capt. Matthew T. Mutti, Wing Executive Staff Officer, 104 Fighter Wing
/ Published June 04, 2009
BARNES AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Massachusetts --
This story begins on March 7th when The Adjutant General, Major Gen. Joseph Carter came to Barnes for a medical appointment before his trip to Key West with the wing. During his visit, he had lunch at the dining facility with a few Airmen from throughout the base. During lunch, Staff Sgt. Karla Belliveau of the Civil Engineering Squadron, and full-time teacher at the Millbury Elementary School, shared a story with Gen. Carter, highlighting her school and their support of her involvement in the Guard. At the end of the discussion Gen. Carter suggested that she speak to the Massachusetts ESGR (Employer Support of the Guard & Reserve) committee and see if they would recognize her school department for their support.
Immediately following lunch, Staff Sgt. Belliveau and I discussed the different programs ESGR has to recognize employers who go above and beyond to support the members of the base. With all the options, the first step is contacting a representative of ESGR and submitting a nomination form through the ESGR website www.ESGR.org
After nominating her superintendent and principal for the ESGR Patriot award, the local ESGR committee recognized that the impact of the school's commitment, and worked with Sgt. Belliveau to recognize the Millbury Public School District with a Seven Seals Award for actions above and beyond in support of the guard.
During the school's annual Memorial Day ceremony held May 21st, representatives from ESGR, Maj. Steve Dougherty, the Civil Engineer Squadron and I traveled to the Millbury Elementary School and publically presented the schools administrators recognition awards for their efforts to ensure Staff Sgt. Belliveau is able to deploy and support the commonwealth's missions. Ms. Sue Frederick the school principal and Ms. Sue Hitchcock the school department's superintendent were recognized for their support. Mr. Richard Bedard, the schools business manager received the award on behalf of Ms. Hitchcock and stated, that the school was very excited to receive this recognition. They were very proud of work Sgt. Belliveau does for the school, and they are pleased to support her dedication to the Air Guard.