Health & Safety

June 8, 2012

56th DS sinks teeth into mission

Tags:
by Airman 1st Class Grace Lee
56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

Senior Airman Ana King, left, 56th Dental Squadron dental assistant, oversees the Navy Reservists’ dental assistant during an oral surgery May 2 at Selma, Ala. King was one of five Airmen who participated in Alabama Black Belt 2012. During this operation, her job was to assist and train the dental assistants from the Air National Guard, Air Force Reserve, Army Reserve and Navy Reserve.

More than 8,000 people in Alabama received free dental treatment from total and joint forces April 29 through May 12 as part of “Operation Alabama Black Belt 2012.”

Master Sgt. Lee Walton, 56th Dental Squadron flight chief of clinical dentistry, was one of the many who helped make this humanitarian mission possible.

“Alabama Black Belt 2012 is an opportunity to increase the quality of life of fellow Americans,” Walton said. “It also challenges our deployment skills and operational readiness.”

The ABB task force was comprised of Army Reserve, Air Force Reserve, Navy Reserve, National Guard and a few active-duty personnel, who provided medical, dental and civil engineering to the community.

Prior to the mission, Senior Master Sgt. Jodi Hildebrandt, 56th DS superintendent, wanted to get Thunderbolts from the 56th DS involved.

“I thought it would be outstanding if the 56th DS could support the mission in some way,” she said.

As a result, they put together a team of five Airmen.

“Walton was part of a five-man team that helped support the multi-service/interagency mission,” Hildebrandt said.

Walton’s role in the mission was to provide training to the dental technicians, along with one other Thunderbolt at the site in Demopolis, Ala., while the other three Airmen stayed at Selma, Ala.

According to Hildebrandt, the mission was twofold; they provided humanitarian and innovative readiness training.

The ABB mission not only benefited the medically underserved and economically depressed communities, it also helped military personnel conduct deployment and readiness training.

“Airmen from the 56th DS were able to use the skills and abilities the Air Force has given them to assist local communities,” Hildebrandt said. “They also provided skills training to other participants from our sister services.”

The communities weren’t the only ones who gained from the mission.

“Everyone involved got something out of it, not just the people in need of healthcare,” Walton said. “I had the opportunity to provide humanitarian health services to the American people.”

With the combined efforts of all the services involved, they met their goal.

“A total of 29,000 people were treated at the three sites,” he said. “Out of that number, 8,202 were dental patients, so we were extremely busy.”

Walton remembers one person in particular who also helped others who were in need.

“His name was Boston Collier, a local farmer; he helped a lot of poor people in town.” Walton said.

“Even though he was struggling, I thought it was great how he helped feed the locals with his crops.”

For Hildebrandt, it wasn’t just about providing dental care; it was also about touching the lives of others.

“I feel that the Airmen of the 56th DS reached out and touched the community in a positive and reassuring manner,” she said. “It has helped the Airmen serve their fellow Americans and better themselves in their professional and technical abilities.”




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


 
 

 

Fourth of July: Celebrate safely

On July 4th, America will celebrate its 239th birthday with festivities across the country. They may include fireworks, swimming, boating, camping, picnics, barbeques, consumption of alcohol and travel. “From 2009 to 2013 during the summer months of June through September, the Air Force had three fatalities,” said Ben Bruce, 56th Fighter Wing Ground Safety manager....
 
 

Street Beat

The 56th Security Forces Squadron handled the following incidents June 15 through 21: Tickets Security forces issued citations for six moving violations and two nonmoving violations. Traffic-related incidents June 17: Security forces responded to a report of a minor two-vehicle accident at the intersection of 143rd Avenue and Spad Street. An investigation revealed the driver of...
 
 
Staff Sgt. Staci Miller

Finding perfect shape takes out-of-box look

Staff Sgt. Staci Miller Senior Airman Grace Lee, 56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs, changed her definition of the perfect body for herself by getting a new perspective. Weight gain has been a constant struggle for me since I was...
 

 
6_121006-F-EC705-040

June: Men’s Health Month

AF promotes awareness of diseases in men Airman 1st Class Jordan Cook, 56th Medical Operations Squadron medical lab technician, takes blood from Karl Loving, retired Army major, during a men’s health expo at Luke Air Force Ba...
 
 
7_courtesy-photo

Don’t throw a fit — get fit

Courtesy photo It’s a controversial topic that has been brought up by many Airmen — changing the abdominal circumference standards on the Air Force fitness assessment test. After months of debate, it was decided by Air Forc...
 
 

Street Beat

The 56th Security Forces Squadron handled the following incidents June 8 through 14: Tickets Security forces issued citations for two moving violations and one nonmoving violation. Emergency responses June 8: Security forces and firefighters responded to a report of a child, age 3, locked inside a vehicle near Bldg. 942. The child was accidentally locked...
 




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=""> <s> <strike> <strong>