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NEWS | Feb. 22, 2019

Eighteenth Air Force leaders visit JB Charleston

By Airman 1st Class Allison Payne Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Maj. Gen. Sam C. Barrett, 18th Air Force commander, paid a visit to Joint Base Charleston leadership and Airmen Feb. 11-14, 2019, as part of an effort to learn more about the daily mission of JBC and its support to the 18th Air Force. Barrett was accompanied by his wife, Kelly Barrett, as well as Chief Master Sgt. Daniel C. Simpson, 18th Air Force command chief master sergeant.

Hosted by Col. Clint ZumBrunnen, 437th Airlift Wing commander, and his wife, Amanda ZumBrunnen, 18th Air Force leaders toured various facilities across the installation for a behind-the-scenes look at base operations while also visiting with service members in action.

“My biggest takeaway from this visit is how laser-focused Joint Base Charleston is on providing rapid global mobility,” said Barrett. “When aircraft leave here, they execute missions on virtually every continent, supporting missions ranging from hurricane relief efforts, to supporting the warfighters, to moving equipment and supplies all over the globe and more. All of these efforts wouldn’t be possible without our Airmen. I think the future for Joint Base Charleston is very bright based on what I’ve seen here. This magnificent wing and all of its Airmen should be extremely proud of the organization they belong to.”

The 18th Air Force, headquartered at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., is Air Mobility Command’s only Numbered Air Force and one of the Air Force’s largest NAFs. Commanded by Barrett, it is charged with ensuring readiness and sustainment of approximately 36,000 active duty, Reserve and civilian Airmen. 

Eighteenth Air Force is responsible for the command’s worldwide operational mission of providing rapid, global mobility and sustainment for America’s armed forces through airlift, aerial refueling, aeromedical evacuation and a global air mobility support system.

During their visit, Barrett and Simpson received mission briefings from various agencies, recognized numerous unit’s star performers, met daily with base leadership, visited several other installation operations and amenities and co-hosted an all-hands call.  

“What an amazing place Joint Base Charleston is,” Simpson said before expressing his gratitude and encouraging Airmen to understand how important what they do is to JBC, 18th Air Force and Air Force missions. “It is important and don’t ever lose sight of that. We are incredibly proud to be here and to serve alongside you.”

Units reporting to 18th Air Force consist of two stand-alone groups and 11 wings, including JBC’s 437th Airlift Wing. Additionally, the 18th Air Force is responsible for 400 aircraft, consisting of 11 different airframes.

“It is our responsibility to work together as a team to make sure we take care of our people and generate our warfighting capabilities,” said Barrett. “The best part of the Air Force is its Airmen. There’s nowhere else in the world you will find a sisterhood and brotherhood like this. Our Airmen will do anything for one another, including laying down their lives for each other. It’s the most amazing thing on this planet, as well as the reason I chose to spend my life in this service.”