Northwest Military Blogs: McChord Flightline Chatter

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

August 30, 2012 at 9:19pm

‘One team, one family’

Bombs are dropping all around, gun fire can be heard in the distance, a C-130 Hercules makes a low pass of the battleground and overhead members are parachuting in. This may sound like a scene from a video game or movie, but it was the actual scene of the McChord Field Combat Dining-In, Aug. 17 at Heritage Hill.

More than 600 Airmen from the 62nd Airlift Wing, 627th Air Base Group, 446th Airlift Wing and other tenant units attended this year's event.

The event included an obstacle course, water fights, multiple points of order that sent members to the "grog," a simulated kidnapping of the wing commander and guest speaker, a fly over by a C-130 Hercules and two separate parachute jumps in which one included the guest speaker, Chief Master Sgt. Bruce Dixon, 24th Special Operations Wing command chief master sergeant.

"Overall the evening was a success," said Tech. Sgt. Rebecca Moore, McChord Field Honor Guard NCO in charge and combat dining-in event organizer. "As I looked around throughout the night, almost everyone had a smile on their face."

The dining-in ceremony is a formal military ceremony for members of a unit, which includes a dinner, festivities and other events to foster camaraderie and esprit de corps.

"The U.S. Air Force dining-in roots back to the 1930s with General H. ‘Hap' Arnold's wing-dings," said Chief Master Sgt. Gordon Drake, 62nd Airlift Wing command chief and sergeant-at-arms for this year's event. "This event gives the commander an opportunity to meet socially with their subordinates and enables military members of all ranks to create bonds of friendship through an atmosphere of camaraderie and fellowship."

That camaraderie and fellowship was prevalent throughout the evening when members of different units worked together to steal the chairs of the head table, planned water gun attacks on other units and coordinated abductions of commanders and other members from sister units.

"Squadrons and groups sat with each other, attacked and dined with one another and best of all, rallied with each other to shoot water guns, water balloons and acquire ‘other' items from the mess," said Senior Master Sgt. Angela Fernandez, 62nd Aerial Port Squadron first sergeant and madam vice for the event. "It really brought everyone together.

"Besides all of the mad fun everyone was having, I believe our guest speaker was the highlight of the evening," she added. "He reminded us of what we were here for and as well what and who we need to be...one team, one family, one fight."

Drake also pointed out another highlight of the event.

"Chief Dixon parachuting into the event certainly stands out as a highlight of the evening," said Drake. "My favorite part of the event was the motivating and uplifting speech given by the chief. It really summed up what it means to be an Airman."

With the sun setting behind the command building on McChord Field, the shadow cast a scene of a torn battlefield littered with remnants of water balloons, water guns and a battle that lasted for hours on end.

"The importance of this event was to bring everyone together to increase camaraderie, enjoy good fellowship and establish social rapport," said Fernandez. "Six hundred people from across the base in one place played, dined and just had fun together. Pretty awesome."

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