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Fallen Defenders remembered at annual ruck march

By By Senior Airman Stormy Archer | 502nd Airbase Wing Public Affairs. | Oct. 30, 2017

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO, Texas —

Security Forces members from across JBSA gathered Oct. 20 at JBSA-Camp Bullis for the sixth annual Fallen Defenders Ruck March.

The Fallen Defenders Ruck March is held every year at JBSA-Camp Bullis to remember all security forces Airmen who have given their lives since the Tet Offensive during the Vietnam War in 1968.

“There has been nothing we have done in our careers that is more important than honoring our fallen defenders, Chief Master Sgt. Tamala Hartz, Headquarters Air Force security forces career field manager, said. “As we ruck today we should reflect on their lives and sacrifice, and come to the understanding that their lives are our shared legacy. We should serve in the spirit of that understanding.”

The 4-mile ruck took active duty security forces Airmen, Gold Star family members, security forces Airmen in technical training and their instructors through the rigorous terrain of “Three Bears” at JBSA-Camp Bullis.

“We should remember today and always that what makes our fallen defenders special is they were committed to defending our nation, and they were the best that America had to offer,” said Hartz. “Each of you here this morning, from across generation of defenders, is a reminder that there are patriots who still live by those same ideals.”

This year’s march is a lead-up to the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Tet Offensive and the remembrance ceremony to be held by the Air Force Security Forces Academy Jan. 30-31.

“The best way to honor these defenders is to simply be as they were, be willing to do as they did and serve in their honor,” said Hartz. “Each and every day, 38,000 Airmen are out there standing the post, and they all are honoring our fallen defenders.”