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UAA/AFROTC Detachment 001 Unofficial Newsletter December
The Flightline is an unofficial cadet newsletter published in the interest of personnel at Det 001 University of Alaska Anchorage
Field Training, “…don’t worry, you’ll love it.”
By: Cadet Captain Samuel Oh I went to Field Training. What exactly does that mean? After a year of preparation, of studying, and of dreading Fridays every week when I would be tested, chewed out, and pushed to the limit, I knew I still only had a chance to be awarded a coveted slot at attending this amazing event called ‘Field Training’. The whole experience, which can roughly be narrowed down to one year, is one that I will not easily forget nor wish to. I arrived in Alabama with the fact that I had prepared for a year to attend this training. No matter how much I told myself that it was just that, training and nothing else I couldn’t forget the fact that someone out there believed that we cadets needed a year of preparation to live through this ordeal. This alone terrified me but I couldn’t wait for it to begin all the same. I had good reason to be excited. As you already may know, I can’t go into the details of the training, and since I am unsure as so what exactly those details are, I won’t discuss any of it. What I will say though is I didn’t meet a single cadet that regretted their time at training. Upon touching down in Mobile, AL I ran into several widely-grinning, short sleeve blues-wearing cadets with their shiny new prop & wings pinned to their covers. Not all of them had meticulous tips or secrets to succeeding at Field Training or even wished us good luck because all of them said something along the lines of, “don’t worry, you’ll love it”. It made me laugh, because I knew that they couldn’t possibly be telling me the truth and to be honest I was a little annoyed that they taunted us with their position of just having gone first. If you haven’t been to Field Training, I imagine you’ll feel the same way I did when I heard these words, but really, don’t worry, you’ll love it. If Field Training taught me anything, it’s that worrying won’t get you far anyway. What you have to do is approach every situation with a calm and positive mindset; do exactly that during the good times and you’ll only make them better. At Field Training you’ll live and work with outstanding characters, experience unimaginable scenarios and get the leaders’ mentality hard-wired into you, so it’s not hard to see the positives. So what does it mean to complete Field Training? It means you have an understanding of what you are getting yourself into as an officer in the US Air Force. It is an experience that our leadership desperately wants us to experience before we ever decide to sign on the dotted line and say “this is what I want”. So if you’ve already decided that this is your cup of tea, walk of life, or bailiwick, then hold on tight because you’re going to love Field Training!
Field Training Second Time Around
By: Cadet Third Class Jeannette Bulaong Cadet Hannah Toomey arrived one week early at Maxwell AFB, AL and it was much different from what she remembered two summers ago. The frantic and chaotic first day was not quite same the second time around. Cadet Toomey was privileged to be a Cadet Training Assistant (CTA) for Maxwell 1 Field Training Unit 2010. CTA’s are individuals who have already completed Field Training and have been selected to return and help with training new POC candidates. Their mission is to challenge cadets at problem solving, teach them leadership skills under pressure, increase their attention to detail and situational awareness (every cadet’s favorite ROTC buzz words!) and offer mentorship for the four weeks of Field Training. There are two types of CTA’s (read up FTP!): Traditional CTA’s, who oversee cadets in specific areas of training such as Drill and Ceremonies and Physical Training, and Flight CTA’s who are assigned to one of approximately 15 flights beside an active duty officer known as a Flight Commander. Cadet Toomey was a Flight CTA watching over 22 cadets in Alpha Flight. She greeted them every morning with their favorite song, reveille, applied professional pressure during GLP’s and visits to the infamous Dining Facility, and made sure they weren’t having fun (well, not too much) at the Joint Forces Training Center (JFTC) in Mississippi. Other duties included asking rhetorical questions such as “What are you doing?!” and “Are you kidding me?!” Despite the outer CTA façade, many cadets and fellow CTA’s called her “motherly” because of her caring nature and mentorship. For four weeks, she watched her cadets grow and come together as a flight. Cadet Toomey expressed that it was incredibly worthwhile to see how her cadets had grown into new POC by the end of Field Training. She described the events of Field Training as, “very memorable,” as her smile grew from ear to ear. Cadet Toomey furthered recalled her motherly duties by referring to her cadets as, “the children,” since she frequently had to remind them to drink water, go to bed (!!), and wake them up each morning. Major Blazak was one person she did not neglect to mention. Major Blazak was her Flight Commander from the University of Massachusetts. They worked side by side with Alpha flight and he gave her invaluable feedback on her training skills and allowed her to help evaluate Alpha flight and write their performance reports. Their leadership styles complimented each other and Cadet Toomey will not soon forget the Boston accent that Major Blazak had, making his yelling very memorable. While working among other CTAs and active duty officers, she even ran into the familiar face of Captain Basnett along with a few other cadets that had attended Field Training with her in 2009. In these situations she reflected that it is a small world and an even smaller Air Force. “You will see the people you meet again,” says Cadet Toomey, and maybe sooner rather than later—Cadet Toomey commissions in 150 days! 2|Page
Cadet Toomey found the CTA experience to be one of the most rewarding of her time in ROTC. She learned a ton—she experimented with different leadership styles, worked closely with Major Blazak, and also got to work and talk with 19 other CTA’s from detachments around the country. In the end, handing her cadets the coveted Prop and Wings, signifying that her cadets had made it to the POC, was a moment she will never forget.
Photos that Cadet Toomey would love to tell you about:
September 11 2001, Memorial Run
By: Cadet Third Class Pasquale Falbo
I was woken up on the morning of September 11, 2001 by my mother shaking me and saying “we’ve been attacked.” I remember running out to the living room and standing in front of the television and seeing the first world trade center standing there in downtown Manhattan with smoke pouring out of its side. On that morning nearly 3000 people lost their lives and the world that we lived in changed. Today, regardless if you’re pro-war, anti-war, or somewhere in between, September 11th has become a day where our country can come together and remember. Every September 11th since that day has been filled with people around this country coming together to memorialize the men and women who lost their lives that morning, and to those who are fighting to make sure that it never happens again. The cadets of the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps are no different. Every September 11th for the past three years we as cadets have done our part to pay our respects to those who were lost, and I foresee that the 9/11 Memorial Run, organized and operated by AFROTC’s Arnold Air Society Lt. General David J. McCloud Squadron, will be around for many years to come. To pay our respects we set a goal for this year’s memorial run, the same goal that we have had in years past, the continual forward motion of the United States Flag around Elmendorf Air Force Base for a full 24 hours from 0845 September 10, to 0845 September 11. Cadets from both the Air Force ROTC as well as the Army ROTC of UAA took turns running the flag in shifts of thirty minutes in length, and in pairs of two. Cadets who were not running the flag would stand by at a base of operations where they had additional duties such as keeping track of the runners, making sure the shift changes happened smoothly, keeping supplies of food and water filled for runners after their shift, and even to run additional 4|Page
shifts if need be. Every year during this run it hasn’t been uncommon for cadets to run two or three shifts throughout the 24 hours in order to make sure that we didn’t fail in our goal to pay our respects. Through the heat of the cloudless days and the cold and dark of the night the cadets successfully kept the American flag moving forward for all 24 hours. Though afterward many were both physically and mentally exhausted, it is a safe bet to say that all were satisfied with this year’s 9/11 memorial run, and left with a greater sense of respect and patriotism. Though the scale of our memorial may be small, in our own way we were able to pay our respects to those who died, and to help our school, our state and our country to remember.
Air Force Academy Free Fall School With Cadet Sargent
By: Cadet Third Class Jeannette Bulaong We all know and see Cadet Sargent around and if you haven’t, well he isn’t hard to miss. He is one of the tallest in our detachment. Cadet Sargent was prior enlisted and now preparing for his big leap as a Second Lieutenant for the Air Force. During his time in with us at the Detachment, he had the opportunity to experience a PDT, Professional Development Tour. I had the privilege of picking his brain during this interview and here we begin our journey. 5|Page
What is the PDT that you participated in? Air Force Academy Free Fall School When and Where was it? It took place this past June (Summer 2010) in Colorado Springs at the Air Force Academy. I noticed that there were a lot of you that went I am sure that you made plenty of friends. Can you describe what you and the others are doing in the pictures? (Inside Free Jumping) The “inside free jumping” is actually a giant wind tunnel that allows jumpers to practice their form that they need to perfect in order to jump out of the airplane and ultimately pull the ripcord in order to open their chute. We were at a Place called Sky Ventures Studio in Denver, CO. Each person is given four minutes of “Tunnel Time” which doesn’t sound like very much but the Air Force pays $50 a minute to have Cadets in there. Each summer over 200 Cadets each receive four minutes of Tunnel Time. You do the math! Four minutes is a ton of time! What were you practicing for? (in the inside free jumping) We were practicing to perfect our jumping form during the free fall portion of the jump. We practice what is called “The Arch” which is the ideal position to fall out of airplanes because of how stable it is. What are the things that you've learned during this PDT that you would like to pass on? I would like to pass on that a key factor to success is willpower to do so. I had a very scary incident that involved a chute emergency (three chute emergencies to be exact) and being that it was only my second jump I was very scared to go back up for the third. Needless to say I managed to pull through it just like anyone else can with the right attitude. How were you able to go on this PDT? This PDT was a competitive selection. I was chosen based on a number of factors that the Detachment Commander ranks everyone on. I.e.) Grades, Commander Ranking, PT Scores, Attitude etc. How long was it? 14 days. How often did you get to actually jump off a perfectly good airplane? We jumped out of the airplane a total of five times. Each jump consisted of ten seconds of free fall time for a total of 50 seconds. I actually accumulated 61 seconds of free-fall time due to my jumps being slightly longer than average.
Would you like to share any memorable moments during your time there? After jumping out of an airplane not much else stands out a memorable. I met some very good friends and comrades that shared the unique experience of seeing what death might be like and living five times over. Other than that the most memorable jump would be my 15 second jump that I placed me at 750 feet above the ground (rather than the expected 2000 feet above ground that a 10 second jump would yield.) Is there anything else that you'd like to add with this interview? I think that about covers everything! Thanks!
Let’s Make a Deal With Safety Officer
By: Cadet Third Class Carl France Safety is not the sexy or interesting topic people really care to put much effort into talking about, at least not before something bad happens. I realize this. We are reactionary by nature; it's only when the well is dry that we realize the value of water. And it's only when something bad happens that we realize the value of safety and forethought. Before the blowout preventer failed, before the mud wasn't dense enough, and before the methane gas raced up the Deep Water Horizon's drill bore, killing 11 people and leaving the Gulf of Mexico a very different place, I'm confident that at some point there were people in a room watching power point slides on safety. I'm also confident that many of the people in that room were bored and believed they had heard all this before, and that it was a waste of time. Now that something bad has happened, it's obvious that it's not possible to spend too much time or effort to prevent what happened on the Deep Water Horizon. The lives and livelihoods lost cannot be measured in time or money. 7|Page
Again, it is only in retrospect that the value of safety and forethought become apparent. With this truth in mind I ask to make a deal with you. If you promise to give me your attention, your open mind, and your disciplined thought toward my topics, I promise to make every email, brief, and announcement meaningful, pertinent, and worthy of your time and attention. A safety brief will honestly never be as exciting as our F-22 visits, but I plan on making them just as meaningful.
By: Cadet Fourth Class Emily Schultz
Crossing Over to the Dark Side
I enlisted in the Air Force when I was eighteen. I had no money, no direction and no idea what I was about to get myself in to. My plan was to complete four years and on to the next thing that interested me, whatever that might be. The farthest thing from my mind was the idea that I would come to love the Air Force. Back then if you told me that I would remain enlisted for more than seven years and eventually be accepted to a Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC) commissioning program I wouldn’t have believed a word of it. My first leadership experience came abruptly after the commencement of basic training when I became an Element Leader. This promotion had nothing to do with my leadership potential and everything to do with the fact that I am tall. As one of the original Element Leaders was fired and sent to the back of the flight, I just happened to be the next in line to take her place by the convention of taller tap. At first I was apprehensive about leading but by the end of six weeks I was comfortable in my role and gained great satisfaction from the leadership contributions I made towards the success of Flight 350. As I marched my element to the bomb run in preparation for graduation, a sense of pride and patriotism warmed me just as much as the Texas sun did that day. Through the years I enjoyed a successful career as an enlisted Airman. I took on many informal leadership roles and some formal ones when I became a Non Commissioned Officer. I had lofty goals for my enlisted career. I wanted to become an Airmen Leadership School Instructor, then a First Sergeant and eventually a Chief. As I was considering all the possibilities another idea came to me. What about becoming an officer? Many enlisted Airmen jokingly refer to this process as “crossing over to the dark side.” Well I wasn’t sure what was dark about it but I knew that as an officer I could have more opportunities to lead and more responsibility in making mission-critical decisions all while supporting the success of Airmen. These were the exact things I was passionate about and the added bonus of being paid to earn a bachelor’s degree sealed the deal for me. After a long application process and months of anticipation, the phone call I was waiting for finally came. During a wing exercise, my 8|Page
squadron and flight commanders called me at 0100 to tell me the good news that I had been accepted into the ROTC program. Needless to say I didn’t get much sleep after that! In July, I was released from active duty and I became a part of ROTC Detachment 001, “SECOND TO NONE!” A lot of people ask me why I’m not in the 200 class and there are reasons but putting them all aside I am happy to be a 100 this year. I wouldn’t want to miss out on any ROTC training; otherwise stated I am going for the full experience. It is in line with my philosophy that you should learn anything the Air Force is willing to teach you for free. Besides, I wouldn’t trade the strong bonds I’ve made with my fellow 100 cadets for anything. Speaking of cadets, I have been extremely impressed by the professionalism, dedication and commitment I have seen from all cadets within Detachment 001. At first I was slightly unprepared for the rigidness of the program but because I know the value of internalizing the basics, such as customs and courtesies and discipline, I have pushed the basic training flashbacks out of my mind and decided to keep learning and help facilitate learning among my peers. From other cadets, especially 100 cadets, I have seen many transformations. The open ranks inspection stands out to me as an example considering many didn’t even know how to stand at attention or have any idea which way the cadet ranks were supposed to face (myself included) at the start of the semester. The completion of the physical fitness assessment was another highlight. That day I witnessed many cadets exceed fitness goals they had previously thought impossible. As I’m finishing this article I can see the sun setting out my window as another long winter settles over Alaska. Now that is conversation where darkness can be brought up! As far as that old cliché “crossing to the dark side,” I do not believe there is anything dark about attempting to become an officer in the greatest Air Force in the world. In fact, for all cadets who fully commit to becoming a productive member of Detachment 001, I believe the future looks very bright indeed.
By: Cadet Third Class Charlotte Morthorpe I'm finally coming clean. When I was an AS 100, I didn't know anything about ROTC. When I talked about ORIs with my fellow 100s, I called the inspector the "Inspector General." It took me until the end of the school year to finally understand the difference between column and line formation. At the Fall FTX, I stood in formation with Bravo Squadron and when my squadron commander said that it was our hard work that made the event happen, I exclaimed, "Really? Wow, I didn't actually do anything!" The FTX officers looked at me appalled and shook their heads. I honestly had no idea who my Wing Commander was and I called everyone in the Wing by every other name than their own at least fourteen times each. Dining Out just appeared by magic and every Friday morning before LLAB, people all went into a room to "stand up" for some reason. I was quite aware of how lost I was and was frankly 9|Page
saddened by it. I knew there was a huge, behind the scenes world to our detachment and I wanted more than anything to just understand it and to be a part of it. I contemplated quitting so many times. Before LLAB, I would often sit in my car for a half an hour, watching as all the other “blueberries” flooded into the AVNC, talking and laughing. The engine was off and the clock on my dashboard read 11:59, but I just couldn't bring myself to get out of the car. I was so intimidated by all the POCs and so afraid of getting into trouble for whatever reason. I simply did not understand anything that was going on. I felt useless and stupid and already had ideas about transferring to another college. Most of us 100s had just graduated from high school and I had turned 18 only a couple of months before ROTC began. I wasn't ready to be accountable for myself and to make grown up decisions and I was so afraid that I was the only one feeling this way. My whole first year, I was shy, awkward and very depressed. There was one thing that I finally started to understand about ROTC; at PT or at some awful candidate class, there was always a central theme: just keep pushing, one more lap, only one hour left, just hang in for a little bit longer. So I did. I told myself, "Just try one more year." My first day as a 200, my Squadron Commander approached me and informed me of my job, Continuity Officer. I was insulted. I thought, "What is that? I've never even heard of this job before. Am I just being stuck with some useless, reject job? What is continuity, anyway?" In truth, it was the best job I could have been given. I learned the entire organization of wing officers- I found out what each job was and who held it. Going through the continuity of every job from the last three years has given me the ability to say that if I was thrown into any position, I would know how to do that job. Last year, squadron commander was the only job I even knew existed. Being fairly new and without any structure, this position at first had me feeling hopeless and lost. I realized that it simply meant there is room for innovation and incredible learning experiences. There are things that I know now that I could never even have dreamed existed last year. I have learned how to lead a squadron meeting, make a website, write a proposal, and how to call up seven lazy boys in the Lower 48 and get them to fill out their paperwork on time (you know what I'm talking about, Area Staff). I have confidence now; I understand how the Wing works; I know how to deal with every type of difficult person. My fear and intimidation is gone and I feel an amazing sense of worth. I used to think that my family was the only people that I could trust, but now there are people that have experienced everything with me- we've cried together, stayed up all night just talking and have each other's numbers on speed dial if we're ever in a jam. I've never known friendship like this before. There are a lot of 100s that tell me how unhappy they are and that they are considering quitting. All I can say is just to wait a little bit longer. When this world opens up to you, you too will become addicted to the adrenaline of having a million suspenses and you will make tremendous friendships. Detachment 001 has helped me find myself. Imagine what it can do for you.
A Progressing Year
By: Cadet Third Class Kyle Peyton
Often many people ask about what it really is to be an AS500. It is definitely an odd place to be. You are still a GMC cadet, yet you do not take the AS200 course with your peers. You attend Lead Lab, but many of the people at Lead Lab do not know you as well as they know many of their peers. This was my biggest fear leading up to the AS500 year. I was afraid I would not really have an opportunity to get to know the people around me before I went through Field Training Prep with them. I was also afraid that by not being around and involved all the time, I would not learn and progress as a Cadet. I was completely wrong.
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Even though I am not at the AVNC as often as most cadets, I found plenty of opportunity to get to know others. Whether it was just talking to new people at PT in the morning, or at events such as the completely awesome Open House we had in October, being involved more allowed me to become acquainted with many more cadets than I would have if I had sit back and been just an AS500. Another excellent opportunity I had during my AS500 year happened in Arnold Air Society (AAS). My first job within AAS was the job of Candidate Training Officer Assistant (CTA). This was an excellent opportunity to practice leadership and progress as a Cadet and person. In this role, I learned what it is like to organize and plan events on a week-to-week basis. I also learned that when planning, you have to be extremely flexible and always have a back-up plan for when things just don’t seem to go as planned. I was lucky to work with Cadet Rowinski, who taught me more than I could have ever imagined I would learn in one semester of AAS. It was a great experience and I encourage all who want to be more active within the Wing to sign up for the next Candidate Class as soon as it becomes available. Speaking of Candidate Class, I am sure any new Active can back me up, when I say that this is another excellent opportunity to get to know your peers and become more involved within the Wing. It is not always an easy thing to do, but most things that are worth doing, are never easy. Through being a CTA, I got to witness the most awesome experience I had all semester. This was watching a group of people who knew nothing about each other, come together and form camaraderie. I witnessed Cadets go from not knowing each other’s names, to knowing almost everything about each other. It was amazing to watch these Candidates go from a group of individuals, to forming into a close-knit team. Through being CTA, I got to know many of the Candidates who I did not know before the semester, but would now call my friends So, if you are still wondering how the first semester of my AS500 year went, I would have to say it was an exciting, fast-paced learning experience that I enjoyed every minute of. It could have been a lazy semester where I did not have to do much, but it was through the extracurricular activities that I met many new friends. It was the greatest semester I have had in college. My early semester fears about not getting to know the new cadets, or not progressing, were, I feel, put to rest through being more involved in AAS and AFROTC. So, if last semester wasn’t quite what you planned, find new ways to be involved and meet new people in 2011. I will guarantee that in May, when the semester is over, you will look back and have nothing but good memories of your spring semester in AFROTC.
Learning to be a POC
By: Cadet Captain Nathaniel Gingery It was the beginning of a new semester - new faces, new opportunities, and for me, a whole new side of ROTC. The excitement was almost tangible as I walked in the doors of the AVNC for the first Leadership Laboratory of Fall 2010. I was two weeks out of Field Training and eager to get to use my new-found leadership skills, but as the semester flew by, I realized more and more that my preconceived ideas of life as a POC cadet were completely wrong. I have been in ROTC for the last two years and I remember vividly my first impression of the POCs. Standing on the ramp to the side of the auditorium during briefings, stalking around during formations, or taking the time to talk to each of us as mentors, the POCs were both intimidating and inspiring to me as a GMC. While I got to know a few of them by working with them and talking with them at MWRs, they were still distant and the POC/GMC divide was always in the back of my mind, much as it is in the Air Force between enlisted and officers. This divide was especially evident when they were yelling at the AS 200s during Field Training Preparation. At Field Training, it was much the same. Our Cadet Training Assistants (CTAs) were like generals in my eyes. They yelled at us all the time, watched out for us, and always looked better than the sharpest cadets in our flights. They made being a POC look so far away when I compared myself to them.
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When I got back to Alaska with my prop-and-wings, I faced a new semester and a new position in which I was expected to lead others. I must say, it’s been a steep learning curve with all of the responsibilities of a leadership position demanding my attention, while trying to wrap my head around the fact that I am actually a POC. I had the ABUs, the prop-and-wings pin in my flight cap, and the super awesome cardigan, but inside I didn’t feel like anything had changed. It wasn’t until about halfway through this semester that I began to see in others what it is to be a POC. It’s not the cool uniform items or the salutes, not even the leadership position that make a POC. It’s the determination to stand confidently in front of the Cadre and your peers even when you know you’re going to get chewed out. It’s the drive to fight for your cadets, whether you’re writing awards packages because you know they earned accolades or disputing an MFR because you don’t think they deserve it. Above all, it’s the desire to push yourself and those you lead to achieve the best you can.
Leadership: Easier Said Than Done!
By: Wing Commander Cadet Colonel Hannah Toomey This has, without a doubt, been one of the most challenging semesters of my three and a half year AFROTC career (and I think my fellow POC would agree!). However, it has also been the most rewarding. I have learned more than I thought possible about leadership, people, and myself. I have faced many obstacles throughout the last 13 weeks, but the most difficult one of all has been figuring out how to motivate people. This is possibly the ultimate challenge of leadership, and as General Eisenhower said, “Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” But my question this semester has been how do you inspire this motivation? What I have learned so far is four key tools to good leadership: 1) Take care of your people. At the end of the day, we aren’t just ROTC cadets, but students, many of us with jobs, with families, with personal lives. If someone is not doing the job, there are other factors to consider—you can’t have an iron fist all the time. 2) Be an expert! You must know your people’s job. This keeps them honest, but also motivates them because they know you aren’t just sitting back issuing orders; you’re doing your homework too. 3) Be honest. If someone is not up to par, help them. If someone has blown you away with outstanding performance, reward them! Feedback is absolutely crucial to improvement as in the position, but more importantly as a leader and future officer. 4) Never give up. Lt Boldt, my predecessor, said this in his article last spring and it is certainly a tried-and-true statement. I’ve had to get creative and find different leadership tools to try and motivate people—and then find ways to keep them motivated. I would not trade the experiences of this semester. You, the cadets in the 1st Cadet Wing, have constantly surprised me with your initiative, innovation, and positive attitudes. I have seen the new POC grow and become my peers, but more importantly, my friends. The 700s have provided invaluable input and my fellow 400s have worked harder than I ever could have asked for. I’m truly excited to see the GMC progress even further this spring from all they’ve learned.
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As you move into different roles in the wing, I challenge you to try to do each of the above points. Remember, you can lead from any position! Whether you’re finishing your 100 year, preparing to face the demands of FTP, moving up as an experienced POC, or as move soon to be commissioned 400s and 700s (175 days!), you’re constantly affecting those around you and learning about leadership. Reach out to your peers, be an expert, give honest feedback, and most importantly, never give up.
By: Cadet Third Class Jeannette Bulaong A fallen hero is what we call a soldier that served their country and was taken away from this world for doing just that, serving their country. We have the utmost respect and would like to pay gratitude to those fallen heroes. Four airmen were killed in a C-17 crash on July 28, 2010 during a training mission shortly after taking off at Elmendorf AFB, Alaska. One of the four was one of our Alumni, Captain Jeffrey Hill. Captain Jeffrey Hill was from York Count, Mississippi. He joined the military in 1998 as an enlisted aircraft maintainer. He graduated from AFROTC Detachment 001 at University of Alaska Anchorage and became an officer for the Air Force in 2002. He attended pilot training and became a skilled pilot at Columbus AFB, Mississippi. While in Columbus he trained future aviators as a T1 Instructor. In 2007 he was assigned to be a C-17A Instructor and an Operations Flight Commander at Elmendorf Air Force Base for the 517th Airlift Squadron. He was a skilled aviator who loved the Alaskan outdoors. He loved fishing, hunting, camping and hiking with his friends and family. Captain Hill was very involved in the physical aspect of being an airman. He motivated and encouraged young airmen to stay fit and be strong leaders. I did not know this man but from what I have read and heard about him, to say that he was a positive person, outgoing, funny, a friend, a loving husband and a father is an understatement. We cannot imagine how he has affected many that crossed his path but know that here from Detachment 001, he has left a mark. Those who knew him from school, work or just acquaintances will miss him and to those who have only heard of him will aspire to be what he had become. Thank you for serving our country, Captain Jeffrey Hill, fallen hero.
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