JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-LACKLAND, Texas –
Seventeen Greater San Antonio area civic leaders participated in a C-5M Super Galaxy familiarization flight at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland Oct. 2.
The tour began with a briefing from Col. James C. “JC” Miller, 433rd Operations Group commander, about the Alamo Wing and the C-5M. The flight included an in-flight refueling demonstration over Texas with a KC-135R Stratotanker assigned to the 507th Air Refueling Wing, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma.
Chuck Toudouzze, a San Antonio area ranch owner/manager, observed the in-flight refueling demonstration.
“We really enjoyed being around the military,” Toudouzze said. “The air refueling from the flight deck, right behind the pilots was an experience that very few people probably ever get to witness, so I feel very fortunate.”
The Air Force civic leader program builds connections and bridges the gap between the military and the local community. For example, the 433 AW’s Honorary Commander Program assigns civic and local business leaders to 433rd AW senior leaders for up to two years, inviting local civilians to see the military’s missions. This facilitates the growth of trust and a deeper understanding of the symbiotic relationship between the military unit and the community.
The support for the military is strong in Military City, USA.
“We have, at least in my community, a great admiration for the men and women who serve; reserve and active,” said Kirsten Cohoon, District Judge, 451st District Court in Kendall County. “But I don’t think that there is a lot of knowledge out there about what members of the military do and I think that this is a really great opportunity to teach people what it is that they do.”
Another attendee echoed the need for the outreach programs.
“I think there is a little bit of separation between what the public thinks they know about the military and what the military is really about,” said Goldie Boone, senior research biomedical engineer with the U.S. Air Force at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston. “So, I think programs like this do help to give the public a better picture of what the military is all about; it’s full of ordinary people serving their country in extraordinary ways.”