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NEWS | Jan. 25, 2007

Commander's Comments 1-26-07

By Col. Glen Joerger 437th Airlift Wing commander

First, let me extend a warm Team Charleston welcome to Gen. Duncan McNabb, Air Mobility Command commander, and his wife, Linda. We are honored to have you here and are excited to show you the incredible things our team is doing to save lives everyday.

Members of Team Charleston, as General McNabb visits your work centers, please say "hello" and tell them about your role in delivering freedom around the world. He'll be seeing first hand how we process all air cargo headed to Iraq, how we're using Air Force Smart Operations 21 to save time and keep our airplanes in the air longer, and how we're planning with Naval Weapons Station Charleston to become a joint base.

Our Air Force airlift delivers 3,500 truck's worth of cargo in an average month and an AMC aircraft departs an airfield somewhere in the world every 90 seconds to 2 minutes, everyday, 365 days a year. Since Sept. 11, Air Force cargo planes have flown more than 300,000 mobility sorties, moved almost 5,000,000 passengers and transported more than 2.1 million tons of cargo. This base, our Airmen and civilians, and our 51 C-17s are critical pieces in our Air Force's Rapid Global Mobility puzzle. Without the outstanding work you do here and downrange, the job just wouldn't get done ... period!

That work doesn't go without recognition. The 437th Airlift Wing's Protocol Office was recently named the George Washington Protocol Office of the Year for the third consecutive year. Master Sgt. Steven Longoria, 437th Services Squadron, was named Services Senior NCO of the Year for AMC. These awards are just tools for recognizing the excellence of our Airmen that has become the trademark of Team Charleston.

I had the honor of having another one of our excellent Airmen working alongside me last week. Senior Airman Jake Viveiros, a Phoenix Raven from the 437th Security Forces Squadron, participated in the Commander's Shadow Program. I want to thank Airman Viveiros for his valuable feedback on how we can improve our service to the members of Team Charleston and encourage him to keep up his phenomenal service to our great nation.

Part of that service to the members of Team Charleston was the annual Children's Deployment Line. More than 75 Team Charleston children learned about deployment processing, the C-17, and most importantly, how their moms and dads save lives. A big thanks to Tech. Sgt. Julie Brannan, 437th Mission Support Squadron, for organizing the event, and also to everyone else who helped make this "deployment" a success.

Currently we have almost 800 Team Charleston Airmen deployed around the world. Some are working in their primary specialties and some are filling Army and Marine Corps billets in some of their stressed skill areas and taking on tasks outside Air Force core competencies. Regardless of where we deploy, what we do or how long we're there, we do it better than anyone. Please continue to make me proud. Take care of yourselves and each other.

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