Commentary

May 18, 2012

Reflection, gratitude befit Memorial Day

by Gen. Donald Hoffman
Air Force Materiel Command commander

As I prepare to retire, I once again find myself reflecting on what it means to serve.

Foremost in my thoughts are those who have risked their lives to preserve freedom and democracy.

Even as we are hosting barbecues this weekend, or just enjoying extra time with our families, brave men and women are demonstrating their commitment to the United States and our way of life as they engage in military operations far from home.

Over the years, more than one million American Soldiers, Sailors, Coast Guardsmen, Marines and Airmen have made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our great nation. That number continues to grow. We owe these fallen warriors our gratitude and, though it can never truly be repaid, we should never forget that debt.

Take, for example, the Doolittle Raiders, who commemorated their 70th anniversary last month. Their mission was risky even as planned, but unexpected circumstances forced a difficult choice – cancel the raid or launch early and risk running out of fuel. They chose to launch. The Raiders dropped their bombs, but as their fuel gauges dropped, they knew they could not reach their designated airfields. Only 73 of the 80 Raiders returned home, some after being held prisoner for more than three years. Although the strike caused relatively little physical damage, the selfless mission of those brave Airmen forced the Japanese to strategically re-position their forces and boosted the morale of America and its allies.

Indeed, our history is full of stories of ordinary people who displayed extraordinary heroism through their service. This Memorial Day, remember the ones those stories are about – the sons and daughters, fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters who bravely served and died protecting our freedoms.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs August 1, 2014

Blood drive The next American Red Cross Blood Drive at Edwards AFB is 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Aug. 6 in the Chapel 1 Annex. Both walk-ins and appointments are accepted. To make an appointment you may contact the blood drive coordinators:†Senior Airman Joe Hernandez at joe.hernandez.8@us.af.mil or Senior Airman Sarah Bird at sarah.bird.2@us.af.mil. You may also...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber

New AFTC Inspector General sworn in

Air Force photograph by Rebecca Amber Maj. Gen. Arnold Bunch Jr., Air Force Test Center commander, left, swears in the new Air Force Test Center Inspector General Col. Christopher Wheeler July 30 in Bldg. 1. Maj. Gen. Arnold W....
 
 
NASA photograph by Carla Thomas

Katherine Lott awarded NASA Armstrong employee scholarship

NASA photograph by Carla Thomas Katherine Lott, the recipient of the 2014 NASA Armstrong Employee Exchange Council Joseph R. Vensel Memorial Scholarship, is congratulated by NASA Armstrong center director David McBride. Flankin...
 

 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Tom Reynolds

F-35B successfully completes wet runway, crosswind testing

Lockheed Martin photograph by Tom Reynolds F-35B aircraft BF-4, piloted by Lockheed Martin Test Pilot Dan Levin, starts down the runway as part of wet runway and crosswind testing at Edwards AFB, Calif. In an important program ...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Edward Cannon

412thTW planning 2014 Disability Employment Awareness Month

Air Force photograph by Edward Cannon Chief of Staff of the Air Force General Mark A. Welsh III and his wife, Betty, congratulate Dan Osburn, Joint Strike Fighter Combined Test Force, chief engineer, during a commander’s ...
 
 
Air Force graphic

Existing tools help users reduce PII breaches

Air Force graphic New buttons will show up on Outlook e-mails as part of the new Digital Signature Enforcement Tool roll out. DSET helps users protect personally identifiable information by flagging possible PII in e-mails and ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>