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Proud to be a Knight

PETERSON AFB, Colo. -- To the men and women of the 21st Space Wing, please accept my sincere thanks on behalf of my entire family for your efforts in supporting our transition back to Peterson Air Force Base, and most importantly back to the 21st Space Wing--it is great to be here.

A special thanks to Mr. Al Strait and his team who superbly planned and executed today's change of command ceremony. The dedication and attention to detail you displayed were evident to all who attended and you should be very proud, as am I.

There isn't a more important or exciting mission anywhere in the Air Force than our space superiority mission accomplished here at Peterson and around the globe at our 16 geographically separated units. Having recently deployed to Southwest Asia as Central Command's Air Force Director of Space Forces, I saw first hand just how important space power is to the Global War on Terrorism; while there I had the privilege of working alongside 21st Space Wing Airmen deployed to deliver these vital space effects.

Every member of this wing - blue suit, civilian and contractors - should take pride in the vital mission you flawlessly execute each and every day. Our mission set of providing space superiority effects for our nation, professionally operating Peterson Air Force Base and our five other installations located around the world, and providing expeditionary Airmen for the Global War on Terror, is so vital to our nation and our theater warfighting partners.

These responsibilities cannot be taken lightly; flawless operations must be our standard...not our goal. As your wing commander, it will be my standard to provide you an environment that allows us to relentlessly strive for excellence.

Next week as we celebrate the independence of our great nation, I ask each of you to take a moment to reflect on the privilege it is to serve our country and protect our way of life. Let's also take a moment to remember the 209 21st Space Wing Airmen currently deployed in support of the GWOT, and their families who remain behind awaiting their safe return.

Finally, be safe this weekend. Remember leadership doesn't end when you leave your unit and head home...be a leader, be a wingman, and, most importantly, be proud of what you do and the great nation that you so professionally serve. I look forward to meeting each and every one of you in the coming weeks.