My connection with the Air Force Reserve began with Operation Season’s Greetings in 2005, when I was invited to go overseas to entertain the men and women serving in deployed locations as well as families living at U.S. military bases in the European region.
It was a life-changing experience. One night I was entertaining a group of service personell and saw "fireworks" in the sky and heard loud explosions... that was enemy fire, as it turned out. A few days later, I was at a hospital in another country when many of those same service men were being brought in with life-threatening injuries, missing limbs, etc. Many that I had laughed and joked with just a few days before had been killed in action.
To say this experience changed me could not come close to expressing what a life altering event it became. I have always had the utmost respect for our military personnel, proud that my grandfather served in WWII, but this... To witness first hand the bravery and sacrifice of our volunteer military... and the sacrifices their families make... I, who make my living talking.. struggle for the right words.
I've continued my involvement with the Air Force Reserve and though I wouldn't think it possible, my respect and admiration for the men and women in US Military uniform has continued to grow, exponentially.
Most recently, I was selected and accepted to become a Citizen Airman serving as a national civic leader on the Air Force Reserve Command commander’s civic leader group which now connects me to the proud heritage and history of the Air Force Reserve. It is such a huge honor and something of which I am extremely proud!
YOU can be involved in learning about the Air Force Reserve History through the AFRC History Coloring Book contest.
It's a great coloring book, chalk full of aviation heritage and history, from Frank Luke (no relation) to the famed Tuskegee Airmen; from the airplane loadmasters nicknamed "Old Shaky" to the stealthy F-22 Raptor...
I've got several aviation buffs in the family and I'm sending them this link. The contest runs from October 1 through October 31 and there are three age categories: Children: 5-12, Adolescents: 13-17, Adults: 18+ Have fun and good luck!