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Command Chief's Corner 1-12-07

By Chief Master Sgt. Mel Willis | 437th Airlift Wing command chief master sergeant | Jan. 16, 2007

CHARLESTON AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. — Good Morning Team Charleston! I pray that each of you had the opportunity to spend some well-deserved time with family and friends over the holidays.

Thank you all for the tremendous effort you put forth each and every day of 2006. I know you will do the same in 2007 as we continue to save lives and deliver freedom and hope around the world. What better way to start off the New Year than by recognizing some of the greatest Airmen who serve in our Air Force?

Monday we did exactly that as the first sergeants held their first Diamond Sharp ceremony of the year. Those honored were Senior Airman James Patton, 437th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron; Senior Airman Danielle Avington, 437th Security Forces Squadron; Airman 1st Class Kevin Sullivan, 437th Maintenance Squadron; and Airman 1st Class Jason Repass, 437th Logistics Readiness Squadron. You could see the pride in the eyes of the respective first sergeants as they explained exactly why they selected their recipient. There are many ways to recognize the dedicated professionals here at Charleston; this is definitely one of the more special. I tell everyone that I really do have the best job in the Air Force because I have the opportunity to interact daily with the best men and women this country has to offer. The four recognized earlier this week are great examples.

During the world-record-setting, 20-ship formation I was fortunate to be on the same jet with two of our wing's honorary commanders as well as the command master chief for the Charleston Naval Weapon Station. I cannot tell you how thrilled they were to have the opportunity to not only be a part of that historic event, but more importantly witness up close and personal the finest "airlifters" in the world doing what they do best.

In fact, Command Master Chief Robert Shannon wanted me to pass along his heartfelt thanks to every member of Team Charleston. You see, he knows just as well as I that many of you work quietly behind the scenes doing the things that do not necessarily catch the eye of the photographer or reporter. The things, that if not done properly and on-time, could have a huge impact on the success of the mission. So, to every member of Team Charleston - because every one of you played a significant role in getting our aircraft airborne - I would like to join Command Master Chief Shannon in saying "Thank you!"

Finally, I am not a New Year's resolution kind of person however I ask you to join me in making a vow to be a better "________" this year. Of course, it is up to you to decide what area of your life needs improving. If you are like me that will be the easy part. The difficulty comes in seeing it through.

Team Charleston - One family, one mission, one fight!