Commander highlights recent events

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Recently, Chief Master Sgt. Tim Omdal and I had the distinct privilege of visiting the men of the 13th Air Support Operations Squadron (13th ASOS) at Fort Carson.

The 13th ASOS is tasked with successfully integrating joint firepower and advanced weather technology in support of Army operations worldwide. The 13th ASOS includes a tactical air control party that provides liaison and close air support and a weather team that provides weather forecasting, observing, and briefings for aviation operations. During war, or when tasked, this unit deploys with Army units to provide the combat multiplier of airpower.

Our visit to the 13th ASOS turned out to be quite rewarding. We were able to suit up in individual body armor and witness first-hand a demonstration of the superb combat support they contribute to the joint fight. Furthermore, I had the distinct privilege of presenting three Airmen - Capt. Jayson Schmiedt, Tech. Sgt. James Elkins and Staff Sgt. Joel McPherson - with the Bronze Star Medal for their heroic actions during Operation Iraqi Freedom, where they engaged in combat missions in Sadr City.

Of course this visit could not have been possible without the support of many. I wish to thank Lt. Col. Roy Fatur, First Sgt. Kevin Garrett and the entire team of warriors that made this visit a memorable experience.

This week, here on Peterson AFB, our Knights pulled together to provide support to the
Air Force's top-ranking leaders as we hosted the first day of Corona. Corona meetings happen three times per year, and they allow Air Force senior leaders to come together for open discussions and decision-making that typically shapes the future of the Air Force.

Continuing a tradition that has shaped the service's leadership since 1947, this wing proudly demonstrated a selfless degree of support to the conference's overall success.
First and foremost, my thanks to Ken Friesz and his entire protocol team for their tremendous work. 21st SW Protocol Office handled the initial planning and arrangements weeks ahead of time and were the central point of contact in handling all distinguished visitor arrivals while ensuring our wing was prepared to shine.

Another important aspect of the preparation and execution of Corona was largely the unsurpassed installation support provided by our 21st Mission Support Group. Several personnel played significant behind-the-scenes roles in this profound display of excellence, including 2nd Lt. Paul Wilcox, Staff Sgts. Dennis Urruchihuaman, Erick Lizarraga, Lava Plummer, Keith Frisbie, and Melissa Spoon, Mr. Kyle O'Brien, Mr. Steve Stengel and Mr. Inocencio San Agustin.
Again, the entire effort was a classic example of a team pulling together to get the job done, and I am proud to have been associated with such a display of teamwork.

Finally, I have had the distinct privilege of serving along side 2nd Lt. James Harris for the past four months as he filled in as the wing executive officer. This Lieutenant is an incredible Airman and leader. Thanks James for all of your support. I know the Mission Support Group will be glad to have you back.