Just two days shy of the 40th anniversary of the signing of the treaty ending the Vietnam War, two former POWs toured an exhibit Jan. 25 at the Hill Aerospace Museum containing a reproduction of a cell from the Hanoi Hilton.
Retired Col. Leon “Lee” Ellis and retired Lt. Col. Jay Hess, Air Force pilots shot down over North Vietnam in 1967 and both held for more than 5 years, visited the Hoa Lo Prison cell built as a part of the recently opened Vietnam War exhibit. Hess was shot down in August 1967 and Ellis three months later in November.
The Warrior’s Call of January 2013 kicked off the year with a sense of understanding and earnestness. The event occurs once a month, and allows servicemen and women to paint a picture of life in the armed forces. This month, Maj. Tim McCarty, 75th Security Forces Squadron commander introduced a team of Security Forces defenders. Second Lt. Joel Bischoff, Master Sgt. Terry Gilbert, and Tech. Sgt. Benjamin Vasquez took the opportunity to share stories of their time serving overseas and what they learned from being in a different and complicated culture.
In 1952 President Dwight D. Eisenhower and members of Congress established the Presidential Prayer Breakfast. On Feb. 14, Hill AFB will hold a National Prayer Breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., in keeping with the long established tradition under the new name change which occurred in 1970 to better reflect the character of the event.
Col. Kathryn Kolbe assumed command of the 75th Air Base Wing on Jan. 11 in a ceremony officiated by Lt. Gen. Bruce Litchfield, Air Force Sustainment Center commander, in Hanger 37.
The ceremony followed a historic year of change as the air base wing saw the Air Force Materiel CommandSSRqs reorganization of 12 centers to five amid budget restrictions and other business-as-usual mission requirements, under the command of Col. Sarah Zabel.
The Hilltop Times and the Standard-Examiner sat down with Col. Sarah Zabel, 75th Air Base Wing commander, for a series of questions Jan. 3, before the Change of Command ceremony to be held next week (Jan. 11).
You are moving on?
I am moving on. The change of command is Jan. 11.
Will you be around after that?
Not for long. The timing of this change of command is because I'm going on to a class that all new generals go to. About the time it winds up I'm expecting to move into another job.
A memorandum was issued by Col. Sarah Zabel, 75th Air Base Wing commander, dated Dec. 21, that reported only two samples of water showed copper levels similar to those initially collected in July and reported in September. These findings in December, she cautions, do not mean the status has changed because the initial findings came as a result of pipe corrosion. Everyone is urged to follow the same basic recommendations as given initially.
So you've deployed, come back and are eligible for a campaign medal signifying you've served in the AOR. You're probably not aware that you now qualify to join an organization on base and meet with some of those who have served with distinction.
Every first Tuesday of the month, a group of veterans meets at the base in the Chiefs Room, the one farthest east at The Landing. This month it's Jan. 8.
Looking back on the past eventful year, Team Hill has risen to the top and surmounted challenges, made adjustments and is looking forward to even more opportunities.
Even as 2012 is nearing its last few days and the Hilltop Times goes to press, fiscal challenges are not slowing down. Leon Panetta, Secretary of Defense, issued a memorandum stating that everyone will go to work on Jan. 2 even if Congress does not agree on a budget. He said financial adjustments would be made later in the year if necessary.
75 ABW/SEF (Flight Safety) received word recently that they had taken the AFMC Flight Safety Award for FY 2012.
The team consists of Capt. Adam Bradbury and Master Sgt. Brent Day, an active pilot and an experienced maintainer, respectively.
"Flight Safety is responsible for all safety of the flying operations here at Hill Air Force Base," said Bradbury. While there are several flight safety offices on base, this is the Installation Flight Safety office, in terms of the runway and the entire air field.
Maj. Mikel Gregory, AFROTC Detachment 855 (BYU) Education Flight commander, brought approximately 67 Air Force ROTC cadets and their spouses with him to Hill AFB on Dec. 7. At the conclusion of the tour he reported they now have a better idea what they are getting into now that they have seen a base. "On top of that their eyes are opened up to other options," he said. "Maybe they had thought they might want to be a pilot or an intelligence officer, but there are a lot of career fields that make up the whole."