Uncategorized

November 1, 2013

AF culture shift for Navajo Airman

Tech. Sgt. MATTHEW GLOWICKI
56th Security Forces Squadron

Tradition runs deep for Senior Airman Justine Paramo, 56th Medical Group internal medicine technician and a full-blood Navajo. Hailing from Shiprock, N.M., Paramo is familiar with the traditions and customs of her tribe.

“One of the traditions my parents would follow was to have my brother, sister and me stand outside in the snow in order to get rid of our weakness,” she said. “We were kids so we didn’t really mind because we loved playing in the snow.”

But while the traditions of her people run deep, there is another tradition that runs deep in this Airman – service to her country.

“I have a long history of family members serving in the military,” Paramo said. “My late great grandfather was a Navajo code talker. My ‘Nali,’ or paternal grandfather, served in the Army and my ‘Chei,’ or maternal grandfather, served in the Air Force. Both of my parents served in the military as well.”

After graduating from Shiprock High School and attending San Juan College in Farmington, N.M., Paramo decided to continue her family’s legacy of service by joining the Air Force.

“Prior to my enlistment in 2007, my parents brought a Navajo medicine man to perform a ritual and bless me,” she said. “This is traditionally done to keep us safe during our military service.”

While Paramo is proud of her Native American Indian heritage, there are the occasional moments of frustration and laughter.

“I had a guy whisper to me, ‘So, do you guys still live in teepees and ride horses everywhere?’ I started to laugh because I thought he was being silly, but when I looked back at him he was very serious,” she said. “He explained to me that he only learned about Native Americans from his school textbook.”

Being a Native American in the military can be challenging at times due to the different values and traditions of her tribe, Paramo said. But the sense of serving the country and making a difference makes every challenge worth it.

“I don’t think there is a certain word that can describe the feeling of serving your country,” she said, “but for me, it feels fantastic.”




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


 
 

 

Red Ribbon reminder to be drug free

Drug Enforcement Administration agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena was kidnapped, tortured and brutally murdered on Feb. 7, 1985, by Mexican drug traffickers. After the murder of Agent Camarena citizens of his hometown of Calexico, California, wore red ribbons in his honor. This marked the beginning of the oldest and most visible prevention awareness campaign in the...
 
 

Dollars and Sense

As a new government employee, you have the opportunity to save for your retirement through the Thrift Savings Plan. The TSP is similar to a 401(k) plan in the private sector. Participating in the TSP is easy. You can use the electronic version, such as EBIS or myPay, or fill out the Form TSP-1 (www.tsp.gov/PDF/formspubs/tsp-1.pdf)....
 
 
141015-F-HT977-026

Hispanic Heritage celebrated with food, dance

Linda Machado dances the flamenco as Ricardo De Cristobal accompanies her on guitar during the Hispanic Heritage Month luncheon Oct. 15 at Luke Air Force Base. A luncheon was held Oct. 15 at Club Five Six to celebrate Hispanic ...
 

 
DT_141007-F-BI157-527

Operation Enduring Training: EOD Airmen get full agenda

Chief Master Sgt. William Ewing, 56th Civil Engineer Squadron Explosive Ordnance Disposal flight chief, and Staff Sgt. Michael Garrison, 56th CES EOD training coordinator, brief the Airmen on the preparation for a life-like exp...
 
 

Safety office offers Halloween safety tips

During the spookiest of holidays, there are safety considerations to keep in mind for the trick or treaters in your home and on the street. Things homeowners can do to prepare: • Ensure there is adequate lighting around the house. • Clear the yard, porch and walkways of any tripping hazards such as ladders, flowerpots...
 
 

Street Beat

The 56th Security Forces Squadron handled the following incidents Oct. 14 through 19: Tickets Security forces issued citations for four moving violations. Traffic-related responses Oct. 18: Security forces responded to a report of a hit-and-run from a two-vehicle accident at Bldg. 637 east parking lot. A civilian and a military member left the scene 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>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin