The Edwards Civilian Military Support Group [Civ-Mil] installed their 2013 directors and officers at a dinner held at the University of Antelope Valley Grand Ballroom Sept. 13.
Brig. Gen. Michael Brewer, 412th Test Wing commander, and Assemblyman Steve Knight installed the officers.
Incoming officers are: Danny Bazzell, president; James Welling, vice president; Julie Swayze, secretary; Dr. George “Bud” Reams, treasurer; and Past President Mike Belzil.
Incoming directors are: Cathy Hart, Bob Johnstone, George Nagy, Bob Slade, Mark Thompson, Dr. Les Uhazy and James Welling. Member of the Year was presented to John Fergione for his outstanding contributions.
Feeling right at home, Marine veteran Dennis Anderson emceed the event and shared a few war stories of his own.
Accolades from dignitaries were presented to outgoing president Belzil.
Brewer shared a presentation about the people he worked with at Edwards and his son who is serving. He likened the Civ-Mil group to people at North Platte, Neb.
Ten days after Pearl Harbor was attacked, word got out that the Nebraska National Guard was to be traveling through North Platte. When a few women heard of this, they baked goods for their state troops. The woman hesitated when they discovered the guards were not from Nebraska but from Kansas. They gave the troops the treats anyway and nearly five years later, more than 55,000 women from towns nearby served troops and met up to 32 trains a day. During the course of World War II, more than 6 million troops were served.
“Keep the coffee on was the codeword for North Platte and that is what you are doing to help out the men and woman at Edwards,” said Brewer.
Brig. Gen. Arnold Bunch, Air Force Test Center commander, said it is great to work with a community that understands the importance of the base.
“I’m honored to be working with people of such high quality and caliber to form that kind of a partnership that supports our airmen and their families.” Bunch said he has had the privilege of serving at Edwards four different times and has made many friends in the area.
Founded by Aida O’Connor, Civ-Mil is a support group that establishes a friendly, benevolent association of civic leaders, civilians and military personnel.
Each year the group considers a project to support Edwards’ personnel. Projects have included renovation of the Airman’s Attic, providing more than 3,000 ‘goodie bags’ to deploying troops, holiday gift baskets, support of the Internet CafÈ by providing furniture, computers and Plasma TVs. New members are always welcome.