Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

Posts made in: June, 2012 (14) Currently Viewing: 11 - 14 of 14

June 29, 2012 at 6:46am

McChord's Memorial Grove landmark rededicated

On Sept. 18, 1976, a time capsule was lowered into the ground near the main gate of what was then McChord Air Force Base, now JBLM McChord Field, in honor of the 200th anniversary of United States independence and the 29th anniversary of the U.S. Air Force.

On June 21, 2012, 36 years later, a granite stone was placed and the capsule's location at Memorial Grove was rededicated after weather and age made the capsule's original plaque illegible.

The Air Force Sergeants Association Chapter 1461 donated the large granite stone. The chapter works in conjunction with the Memorial Grove Committee to maintain the three-acre grove area located at the corner of Col. Joe Jackson and Barnes boulevards.

"The day this was dedicated, there were 39 C-141's here, 18 C-130's, even a squadron of F-106A Green Dragons, and about 4,500 Airmen both active duty, Guard and Reserve," Col. Wyn Elder, 62nd Airlift Wing commander, said. "Now you look at McChord Field and there are 51 C-17's and about 4,500 Airmen still active duty, Guard and Reserve. So some things have changed, but in a lot of respects nothing has. It's still Airmen defending our country and our way of life. Thank you for redoing this. It's a wonderful testament to our Airmen past, present and future."

Elder along with Col. Bruce Bowers, commander of the 446th Airlift Wing, unveiled the new granite stone and then placed the 40th anniversary brick commemorating the anniversary of the establishment of Memorial Grove.

The capsule, which measures 17 by 30 inches, is scheduled to be opened in the year 2076. It contains paraphernalia from the base and air wing active at McChord in 1976, including flags, patches, newspapers, photos and a roster of personnel.

The Memorial Grove committee's mission is to preserve the past and enhance the future of the grove according to Senior Master Sgt. Ron Carghill, president of the committee.

Their future plans for Memorial Grove include adding a Medal of Honor recipients pavilion and discussions are ongoing to include an area to honor the Western Area Defense Sector. The committee will add four picnic tables and replace the sign marking the entrance to the grove this year as well.

Photo: Col. Bruce Bowers, 446th AW commander, left, and Col. Wyn Elder, 62nd AW commander, uncover the granite stone marking the location of a time capsule in Memorial Grove on McChord Field at JBLM, June 21. The granite stone, donated by the Air Force Sergeants Association Chapter 1461, replaced an illegible bronze plaque. Capt. Tawny Dotson/62nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

June 30, 2012 at 7:38am

Language Enabled Airman Program application period begins July 2

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) -- Air Force Culture and Language Center offcials recently announced the application window dates for the Fall 2012 Language Enabled Airman Program selection board.
Applications for the Language Enabled Airman Program will be accepted July 2 through August 31, and a selection board will be held this fall. The AFCLC, which is part of Air University's Spaatz Center, aims to choose 200 new LEAP participants from cadet and active-duty officer and enlisted Airmen applicants.

All Air Force officer candidates with a commission date scheduled for the 2012-2013 academic year are eligible to apply. However, application eligibility for active-duty personnel is limited to certain career fields, based on current Air Force foreign language requirements, said Zachary Hickman, the AFCLC Language Branch chief. Enlisted Airmen who meet the minimum eligibility requirements in the following Air Force Specialty Codes can apply for the fall 2012 LEAP selection board: 1A2, 1A7, 1C1, 1C2, 1C7, 1P0, 1T0, 1T2, 1W0, 2A5, 2A6, 3D0, 3E2, 3E5, 3N0, 3S0, 4M0, 6C0 and 6F0. Commissioned active-duty Air Force officers from the following career fields are eligible to apply: 11F, 11G, 11M, 11S, 12F, 12M, 13A, 13B, 13S, 14N, 15W, 21A, 21R, 38F and 63A.

Throughout the career-long program, participants are provided structured language sustainment and enhancement opportunities to develop them as foreign language-enabled professionals and leaders. Participants will have opportunities to attain the highest sustainable foreign language proficiency through live, online classes and intensive training events. Ultimately, LEAP participants will be able to utilize their language skills within their career fields via language-related assignments and taskings, Hickman added.

"LEAP's end goal is to produce a language speaker who can perform their core job duties in their respective foreign language," said Jay Warwick, the director of the AFCLC. "Commanders have a need for cross-culturally competent Airmen -- individuals with language, cultural and regional abilities -- to help accomplish the Air Force mission. LEAP is one way we help provide that."

Application forms, instructions and complete eligibility requirements are available at LEAP background information and frequently asked questions can also be found on the website. Please check the Frequently Asked Questions, and direct any additional questions not addressed on the FAQ to Deadline to submit application packets to the AFCLC is midnight Central Standard Time on Aug. 31.

(Courtesy of the Air Force Culture and Language Center)

June 30, 2012 at 7:40am

Overseas scholarship, fellowship applications due in July

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas (AFNS) -- Airmen who want to attend university overseas, be a White House fellow, serve a two-year fellowship in Japan or compete for an information assurance scholarship have until July 31 to submit their application, Air Force Personnel Center officials said.

"These programs help us develop Airmen, which is one of the Air Force's top three priorities," said Lt. Col. Cotina Jenkins-Sellers, the AFPC officer developmental education chief. "Leaders emerge from these programs with greater knowledge of our role in defense and national security and a broader view of our place in the global arena."

Olmsted Scholar
The Olmsted Scholar Program is an opportunity for Air Force line officers to study in a foreign language at an international university overseas. Candidates selected for the program will experience cultural immersion in the selected country, including university study in the native language. Interested applicants can go to the George and Carol Olmsted Foundation website,, for more information about the program.

White House Fellowship
The White House Fellowship Program provides promising leaders with first-hand experience in the American government process. Selected candidates work for a year as special assistants or senior executives to cabinet-level agencies or in the executive office of the president. For more information about the Fellows program, interested applicants should go to

Mansfield Fellowship Exchange
Airmen interested in cultural immersion in Japan can look into the Mansfield Fellowship Exchange Program. This first-of-its-kind fellowship, for the U.S. and Japan, enables federal government employees to develop in-depth understanding of Japan, learn how its government works and develop relationships with their Japanese counterparts. For more information about this rigorous two-year program, and for application instructions, go to

Information Assurance Scholarship
To meet the growing need for qualified information assurance personnel, the Department of Defense has established the Information Assurance Scholarship Program. Eligible candidates could earn master's degrees in cyber operations or information resource management, or doctorate degrees in electrical or computer engineering. The scholarship program covers tuition, fees and books, with follow-on placement based on Air Force needs. Application information is available on the myPers website at

"In addition to exposing Air Force leaders to cultural and political environments outside their normal duties, the special programs support the Air Force continuum-of-learning model designed to continue to grow leaders throughout their careers," said Jenkins-Sellers.

For full eligibility criteria and application instructions, or information about other personnel issues, visit myPers at

June 30, 2012 at 7:45am

McChord Field Airman named AF award winner

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- Air Force officials selected Capt. Eleanor "Ellie" Morgan, a C-17 Globemaster III pilot assigned to the 4th Airlift Squadron at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, as the winner of the 2012 Federally Employed Women Military Meritorious Service Award.

"This award means the world to me," said Morgan, a Bethlehem, Penn., native. "I feel truly honored to have been nominated and hope that I can continue to help provide learning and growth opportunities for other women."

According to her nomination package, Morgan was instrumental in the 4th Airlift Squadron's Pilot for a Day program for children with terminal illnesses, which raised more than $5,000 and ultimately provided the opportunity for 12 children and their families to participate in an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Morgan counts her involvement in this program as one of her most proud accomplishments.

"The program has given children and their families the unique opportunity to spend a day in the life of a C-17 pilot and get to participate in all kinds of unique hands-on activities," said Morgan. "I think the most rewarding part of it is knowing how meaningful it is for the families. They will cherish those memories for a lifetime, especially since many of our children in the program often suffer from various illnesses, some of which are terminal."

In addition to the Pilot for a Day program, Morgan coordinated a former Women's Air Service Pilot to speak at Joint Base Lewis-McChord's Women's History Month luncheon this year and while deployed she volunteered at a school for deaf children in Adana, Turkey, where she planned a holiday party and raised more than $1,000 for the school.

Morgan is a C-17 aircraft commander with more than 1,200 flight hours. She has accumulated more than 500 combat hours flying in support of Operation Iraqi and Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn, in addition to supporting humanitarian relief efforts around the globe.

"Ellie is truly an inspiring woman and well deserving of this award," said Lt. Col. Thomas O'Connell, 4th Airlift Squadron commander.

Morgan graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in systems engineering. She is a member of Academy Women (a non-profit organization which supports the personal and professional growth of current, former, and future women military officers), The Ninety-Nines (an international organization of female pilots in support of advancing women in aviation), and Women Military Aviators, Inc. (a corporation formed to promote and preserve the role of women pilots, navigators, and aircrew in the service of their country during times of war and peace). Her involvement in these organizations provides her with an opportunity to connect with other females in similar career fields.
"I think it's very important to encourage women to explore and pursue their interests in these fields and to provide them with role models and mentors that they can look up to, ask questions and learn from," said Morgan. "They may never know what they are truly capable of or have the potential to achieve without exposing them to the limitless opportunities that lay before them!"

The FEW award will be presented to Morgan's representative in July at the 43rd National Training Program ceremony in Detroit, Mich. Morgan will be unable to accept the award because she is currently deployed to Southwest Asia as a member of the Combined Air Operations Center. Her position there works with Diplomatic Clearances for aircraft within and around the Middle East and the Horn of Africa. She will return to JBLM this fall.

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