Air Force

October 11, 2013

AETC commander retires after 35 years of service

Tags:
Tech. Sgt. BETH ANSCHUTZ
Air Education and Training Command Public Affairs

Edward Rice Jr.

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas – The commander of Air Education and Training Command retired Thursday, ending a 35-year career of service and commitment to the U.S. Air Force.

Gen. Edward Rice Jr., a command pilot with more than 4,000 flying hours, retired after handing AETC’s reins over to Gen. Robin Rand in a change-of-command ceremony here Oct. 10.

The son of an Airman, Rice grew up in Ohio near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base where his father was stationed and worked in research and development. At the age of nine, Rice was first drawn to flying after seeing literature on the Air Force Academy.

“I was very much captured by the idea of the academy and what it stood for,” Rice said. “I saw the challenges involved and at a very early age, decided I wanted to fly.”

The general achieved his goal and then some, becoming the U.S. Air Force Academy’s cadet wing commander before earning recognition as a distinguished graduate as well as his officer’s commission in 1978. He continued on to undergraduate pilot training at Williams AFB where the future general was named distinguished graduate in 1980 before heading to his first flying assignment with the 69th Bombardment Squadron at Loring Air Force Base, Maine, as a B-52G copilot and, subsequently, aircraft commander.

Although the majority of flight duties throughout his career have been with bomber units, Rice has accumulated flying hours in eight different aircraft, to include the KC-135 Stratotanker, E-3 Sentry Airborne Warning and Control System, and the C-130 Hercules.

When asked if he has a favorite airframe, Rice said it’s like trying to name a favorite child.

“I’ve been really fortunate to have flown a large number of aircraft for a long period of time,” he said. “All the aircraft are very different and there are things you like about each, but you can’t pick one over another.”

The general’s assignments have taken him all over the United States and the world, from Washington, D.C., to Guam and Japan. He feels blessed for the opportunities the Air Force has given him over the last four decades.

“One of the great aspects of the Air Force, and the military in general, is the ability to experience different places and, most importantly, meet different people,” Rice said.

The general said the people he’s served with throughout his career have been the best part of his job, despite having presented the most challenges.

“People are the most complex part of our business,” he said. “You may get frustrated with people when they don’t do what you would like them to do, but then you step back and realize you are dealing with human beings and that is what leadership is all about.”

The general said a key to his success has been focusing on the right people.

“You have to be careful not to focus on the people who are problematic, because it’s the people who are strong in an organization on which the success of an organization depends,” he said.

His advice to new Airmen joining an ever-changing Air Force is to always remember why they were motivated to join in the first place and keep working toward those goals.

“The Air Force might seem different to me now because I’ve been in it for a while, but it’s not to the new Airmen; it’s the only Air Force they know,” Rice said. “The same things that allowed you and me to be successful will allow them to be successful. How far and how fast individuals go in the Air Force is up to each individual more than anything going on around them.”

Rice said being a part of AETC and having a place in the initial contact and continuous improvement of all U.S. Airmen has been very rewarding.

“AETC really is the first command. When we come into the Air Force, we come through the Air Education and Training Command and then we all come back here many times throughout our careers,” Rice said. “I enjoy the continuity of trying to develop Airmen and make them bigger contributors to their units, our Air Force and our Nation.”

Rice said the hard work of everyone in the command will reap benefits.

“I’ve been very pleased with how the command has positioned itself to continue to accomplish the mission the Air Force has asked us to do,” he said. “We have difficulties just like everyone does and we are adapting to a world that is changing very quickly, but our Airmen have stepped up to that challenge and set the command up for success in the future.”

As for his future after the Air Force, Rice said he doesn’t have much planned just yet.

“We have a house here in San Antonio, so we are going to move in and get settled. My wife, Teresa, has plenty for me to do that will keep me busy not for days or weeks, but probably months,” he said with a smile.

The first order of business, Rice said, will be reflecting on 35 years of service to the nation and to our Air Force.




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


 
 

 
Courtesy photo

Handheld imaging tool expands aircraft inspection capability

Courtesy photo An operator demonstrates the portability of the handheld imaging tool. The technology provides maintainers the ability to evaluate aircraft in the field to ensure mission readiness. WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BAS...
 
 

Mock trials teach SAPR through demonstration

KUNSAN AIR BASE, South Korea — Question after question, she attempts to recall the reported events that transpired over the course of the night. The defense attorney, trial counsel and the alleged perpetrator look intently upon the victim as they shift uncomfortably in their seats. “At midnight you decided to go to another bar is...
 
 
Samuel Price

RMO, stakeholders keep eye on sky

Samuel Price The road used to get onto the Barry M. Goldwater Range lies beneath the running water July 9, 2014, that resulted from monsoon rains. With data from the additional recently installed weather stations, personnel wil...
 

 

Air Force OSI agents prevent online exploitation of children

QUANTICO, Va. — Child sex crimes are not unique to any particular base but are a perpetual problem across the Air Force and society. Online exploitation of children continues to be a problem and is routinely investigated by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations. As part of this effort, AFOSI field units have partnered...
 
 
Senior Airman 
DEVANTE WILLIAMS

New Sniper pod helps put pilots’ eyes on target

Senior AirmanDEVANTE WILLIAMS The 425th Fighter Squadron recently installed Sniper Pods onto their F-16 Fighting Falcons at Luke Air Force Base. Sniper pods provide improved long-range target detection/identification and contin...
 
 

Air Force News – February 27, 2015

California Aircrew from Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, participated in a Marine Corps exercise Feb. 10 through 12 at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center ins Twentynine Palms by assisting with close-air support for ground units and providing air support for Integrated Training Exercise 2-15. Japan Emergency response personnel from Kadena Air Base, Torii...
 




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>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin