Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

April 28, 2012 at 4:42am

18th AF commander, command chief visit JBLM

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Lt. Gen. Mark Ramsay, 18th Air Force commander, accompanied by Chief Master Sgt. Jeff Williams, 18th AF command chief, visited McChord Field April 26 to meet with leadership and speak with Airmen.

During his first day of a two-day visit, the general hosted an all call briefing where he emphasized the importance of the 62nd Airlift Wing mission and its Airmen.

General Ramsay shared his thoughts about achieving success in today's challenging operational environment and effectively dealing with challenges and opportunities in today's Air Force. He reminded Airmen of their importance and his appreciation for their hard work.

"You have faced countless challenges over these past months and you should be proud of the impact you've made," he said. "Whether through humanitarian response, like those following the earthquake, tsunami and reactor crisis in Japan, or leading the charge during Operation Pacific Passage, you and your fellow Airmen answered the call that fueled the fight, saved lives and ensured mission success every single time."

The 2013 budget proposal, released in February, outlines Department of Defense plans to reduce its budget by $487 billion in the next 10 years. Along with this proposal, the Air Force has identified 286 aircraft to be eliminated - 123 fighters and 133 mobility aircraft. In addition, plans also call for the force to be reduced by 9,900 - 3,900 active duty, 5,100 Air National Guardsmen and 900 Air Force Reservists.

In light of the proposed reductions, Ramsay reminded Airmen that every dollar counts.

"Fuel efficiency has to be a factor in every decision we make," he said. "It can mean 'make or break' for our missions by impacting our ability to provide the resources we need to be successful."

As one of the many all call attendees, Airman 1st Class Chad Justice, 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron crew chief, discussed his personal favorite topic covered by Ramsay.

"Taking advantage of resources was the part that stuck out to me," said Justice. "He spoke about the great benefits we have and it directly related to me. I'm planning on using my tuition assistance money this year while working on my degree."

After speaking of 62nd AW successes, future budget cuts and JBLM resources, General Ramsay closed with an emphasis on the Wingmanship and working together as a team.

"Build your networks and learn how to really take care of each other," he said. "Home is where the Air Force sends me. That's just a physical location. It's all about relationships; it's always about the people."

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