Caitlyn Chase, 721st Aircraft Maintenance Squadron key spouse, wears many hats around the Kaiserslautern Military Community.
She is a USO team member, a youth resiliency coach, a piano teacher, a children’s ministry coordinator, an Operation ALLIES REFUGE volunteer and Ramstein’s enlisted spouse association Vice President. On top of her sacrifices, she is a wife and a soon-to-be mother.
Due to her 700 community service hours in 2021 alone, it’s no surprise she was awarded Air Mobility Command’s nomination for the Air Force level 2021 Joan Orr Air Force Spouse of the Year Award. This award recognizes a non-military Air Force spouse for their significant sacrifices and contributions.
Growing up in a small town in northern California, Chase always has had the belief that community is a fundamental part of life.
“My hometown is about 3,500 people and community was always such a big part of how I was raised,” said Chase. “It’s a part of where I’m from, it’s a part of my family.”
After meeting her husband, Staff Sgt. Corey Chase, 721st Aircraft Maintenance Squadron maintenance operations center senior controller, at Travis Air Force Base, California, the couple moved to Ramstein Air Base, Germany together. Soon after the move, Chase got involved in the key spouse program at the 721st AMXS.
“A key spouse from my husband’s squadron reached out to me quickly from the time we moved here,” said Chase. “That one person had such a big influence in helping me get involved in the community and feel less homesick. I just really wanted to do that for other people.”
Even overseas, community was still at the forefront of Chase’s mind. She describes moving overseas has humbly opened her eyes to the true importance of community and the key spouse program.
“When you’re born into a community, it [the community] is important,” said Chase. “I don’t want to discredit that, but when you are moved away from your family and friends, you have to completely start all new in a different country. It has been really eye opening to see the impact one person can have on other people.”
In addition to serving her community in every pillar and while doing her part-time volunteer work, Chase also is pursuing a Masters of Counseling degree.
“Helping people is such a big passion of mine,” said Chase. “In college, I discovered how much I love helping people become the best version of themselves and that’s why I’m going to school to become a school counselor right now. I just really love to help people do their best and just getting to do that at such a community-wide level has been really cool.”
Chase’s award will go on to compete at the Air Force level.
“Mrs. Caitlyn Chase has been an invaluable Key Spouse for the 721 AMXS that has wholeheartedly dedicated herself to support of the Squadron, the base, and local community,” said Maj. Steven White, 721st AMXS commander. “Caitlyn’s passion for helping people has been a leading role model to us all as we reinforce the service member and strengthen family resilience.”
The 721st AMXS maintains all en route aircraft and is one of ten squadrons under Air Mobility Command’s 521st Air Mobility Operations Wing. Both the squadron and wing headquarters are tenant units on Ramstein Air Base.