By Commentary by Col. Robert T. Brooks, Jr., 104th Fighter Wing
/ Published September 11, 2011
Barnes Air National Guard Base, 104 Fighter Wing - Westfield, Mass -- Welcome to September UTA. I want to thank each and every one of you for everything you are all doing. We have gone from the UCI and LCAP, to Alaska, ASA move to Westover, an ONE deployment, to a Hurricane evacuation and State Tropical Storm response, another preparation for an ONE, to an AFOA (Alert Force Operational Assessment), to an upcoming ESOHCAMP, a 9th Air Force Standardization and Evaluation Inspection, an Alert Force Evaluation, all along with preparing for an upcoming spring AEF. I did not even list the multiple construction projects on base, or the everyday business of the wing. There are A LOT of opportunities to LEAD, and A LOT of you have already stepped up to the plate and hit some home runs.
Speaking of hitting home runs, I would like to thank Lt. Col. Wilson and his LRS team for hitting a home run with our EOC and taking care of the state mission with Tropical Storm Irene. There are several things we can do better, and we will fix it for next time. Maj. Dean Lambert was the workhouse as the 104th IDO, and he took care of a lot of issues up, down, and across the chain of command in fulfilling his role. There are many more folks who deserve a big thank you and they are mentioned by name in a later article in the air scoop.
Remember when you are in the driver's seat, good communication up/down/across the chain of command is critical. Also keep in mind, when you step out of the driver's seat, good followership with a positive mental attitude is just as important. There is no way we could accomplish all of the above without great TEAMWORK. I want to commend everyone for this.
August family day was a huge success. I want to thank our Command Chief - Chief Fappiano - for leading the charge and setting a new standard here on base for Family Day. There were many positive comments and everyone had a great time. There is another article here in the Airscoop thanking the many people and organizations who helped with family day. The list is too long for one article.
With the ten year anniversary of 9/11 upon us, it is important to remember that event. Each generation of Americans has significant challenges to overcome, and 9/11 will certainly be a measure if not the measure in what our generation is remembered by. As far as I can tell, the 104th Fighter Wing and everyone associated with the wing is doing their duty in helping future generations remember what we did for our country in a positive manner. Everyone here is pulling their weight, and doing their part to help the team.
As we close in on 3 more inspections, I can't help but think of the Triple Crown in horse racing. Only the strongest of the thoroughbreds can win the Triple Crown. I think the 104th is the one unit in the Air Force and Air National Guard that can continue doing well with these upcoming inspections. We just finished the Alert Force Operational Assessment (AFOA), and while it went well - there are some areas we need to improve upon. Finish Strong and thanks for what you all do.