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Showing posts from May, 2018

Smoke doesn't always mean fire Part I

This is the first post in the long final story that I will tell from my career in the Air Force. All the other stories up to this point were told so you, the reader, could understand how I was guided in my career to be prepared for the moment in this story.

The main character in this story has had his name changed to protect his identity as he is still active duty. He has given me permission [read:excitedly asked when I will write this] to tell this story.

In the summer of 2015 I was the specialist section chief in the 311th AMU at Holloman AFB. We had a few new arrivals to the section. Most of them were new avionics airmen, which we desperately needed. However, we did have an E&E SrA arrive who had a line number for Staff Sergeant. His name was SrA Tyler Perkie. He was respectful, polite and hard working. It was rare to not see him covered in aircraft filth, which is quite the compliment for the working sector of the Air Force. He was tireless at the job and his positive attitud…

These are the stories we tell on Memorial Day

If you frequent this blog you'll notice there are two kinds of posts: stories of toxicity, and stories of great leaders. I've been saving this story for a bit but this weekend seems to be the right time to share it.

In the summer of 2012 I was a swing shift flightline expediter in the 308th AMU. Things were not going well. We were trying to balance the training syllabus, a major avionics modification while our manpower dwindled and our experience was quickly evaporating.

This was at the height of the sequestration climate and was coming off the heels of two major manning moves for aircraft maintenance: Open shred for fighter crew chiefs and the redistribution of fighter crew chiefs to heavy aircraft. Both of these actions had a devastating effect on fighter maintenance likely even being felt today.

I was working about 15 hours a night, some nights longer. Our AMU had gone through several leadership changes due to PCS, retirements and firings. And those leadership changes like…

When a leader is a shit leader Part II

Due to the sensitive nature of this post some names have been changed.

The American military has a unique and critical role in society; the protection of the people and more importantly the preservation of our freedoms. However, the fact the role is critical doesn't exempt members of the military from being treated in a humane manner. If you are questioning my use of the term humane read on...

Two months ago I wrote about when my supervisor and AMU assistant superintendent SMSgt Ridgway reluctantly let exhausted maintainers go home in lieu of possibly being injured due to lack of sleep. He seemed to have an inability to understand the human experience which was perplexing because from his outward appearance he seemed to be a human.

In March of 2016 I was moved from my position as a Specialist Section Chief to the coveted position of Support Section Chief. I still attended the morning production meeting however my involvement was almost entirely advisory with the exception of a si…