Air Force impacts Airmen 70 years and counting

Story and photos by Senior Airman Devin Boyer
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

For 70 years, Airmen have dedicated their lives to the Air Force mission to Fly, Fight, and Win. Through innovation, sacrifice and perseverance, Airmen have left a great impact on the Air Force. Furthermore, the Air Force has left a great impact on the Airmen.

After asking Airmen from different career fields how the Air Force has affected them, this is what they said:

“My favorite part about the Air Force is the people. It is truly inspiring to interact with such a diverse and innovative global workforce and to know that we are working toward the same mission and vision. The Air Force has provided me a way to provide for my family while simultaneously providing me continued education and countless opportunities to travel the world. Serving in the Air Force has given me the opportunity to provide a service to my country that some people are not able to do. By being a part of the Air Force, I have been able to serve in unique situations with outstanding joint service and multinational teammates to solve issues that have global impact.” – Capt. Angela Petersen, 86th Airlift Wing executive officer.
“My favorite part about the Air Force is all of the people that I have met so far in my career. The Air Force has given me the opportunity to travel, it has given me the opportunity to experience things that I don’t think I would have ever experienced had I not left California. It’s given me the opportunity to continue my education and the opportunity to meet so many amazing people. The Air Force means loyalty, family, honor, adaptation and the best. We are the best, and we excel at everything we do.” – Tech. Sgt. Trier Stewart, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa knowledge administration non-commissioned officer in charge.
“The only reason I’m in Europe is because of the Air Force. Traveling is definitely one of the best parts of my life. The Air Force has given me stability. The United States wouldn’t be the way it is today without the men and women in uniform. I feel like I’m a part of something bigger. It doesn’t always feel good waking up at six in the morning for physical training, but when you’re down range you really see how it affects the world.” – Senior Airman Victor Murray, 1st Combat Communications Squadron cyber systems operator.
“All of the experiences and people you get to meet from different walks of life has to be the best part of the Air Force. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without the Air Force. The discipline, taking care of my family – a lot of those things you learn from the Air Force family. I couldn’t imagine my life without the Air Force at this point. Someday I’ll be ready to transition to that civilian status, but right now I wouldn’t know anything besides serving the Air Force.” – Chief Master Sgt. Shawn Jones, Headquarters U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa Standardizations and Evaluations aviation resource managers functional.
“My favorite part about the Air Force is the history and heritage, and the brotherhood that we have. As an aircrew member, we are not just Airmen but we are family. We are on the road with each other and are in each other’s lives more than just nine-to-five. There are times where we’re together for more than 75 hours a week. The Air Force has taught me to be selfless, to put others ahead of myself whether it be co-workers or their family members. The Air Force has taught me that I’m a part of something greater than myself. I represent not only myself but my family name and my squadron. Serving in the Air Force to me means a lot. It means I am able to protect and serve not only my fellow countrymen, but those who are unable to protect and serve themselves.” – Senior Airman Crystal Reese, 37th Airlift Squadron aircraft loadmaster.
“My favorite part of the Air Force is that they take care of their people. I see it every day with my married friends and their children. The Air Force does what it can to make sure that they are taken care of. The Air Force has made me a better leader. Being able to go to school on the Air Force’s dime, I’ve been able to better myself and develop myself. Serving in the Air Force means that I am doing something bigger and better than myself. That’s part of the reason why I joined the Air Force. I wanted to serve my country and be a part of something great.” – Tech. Sgt. Taurie McCurdy, 422nd Medical Squadron environmental health operations non-commissioned officer in charge.