Sunday, July 29, 2018

Why I Can Sleep and Feel Safe


Old soldier and faithful reader Barry gave me a heads up on that opening photo. His grandson is second from right. He and the other "kids" in the picture just finished up their training to be crew chiefs on the mighty F-15 Eagle.

I say "kids" but they're old enough to have stepped up and volunteered to watch over our freedoms, that makes 'em men and women in my book.

With the exception of their instructor, that fine looking fellow in the middle with the stripes, they all look so young don't they?

But damned if it doesn't bring a tear to this old sergeant's eye to see such fine men and women wearing the Air Force uniform. The generals and the staff pogues might give one pause, but the kids?

The kids give me hope for a better tomorrow.

Aim high.



Lord, guard and guide the men who fly
Through the great spaces of the sky;
Be with them traversing the air
In dark'ning storms or sunshine fair.

Aloft in solitudes of space,
Uphold them with Thy saving grace.
O God, protect the men who fly
Through lonely ways beneath the sky.

Amen.


28 comments:

  1. That fine looking fellow in the middle with the stripes also looks like a kid to me.

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    Replies
    1. Well, truth be told, me as well.

      But he does look older than the others. If only by a few years.

      Delete
  2. Thinking the active duty types look too young is apparently an affliction common to veterans. Then I look at early pics of myself in uniform, and start to think "too young to shave". Followed by "Oh. Wait."

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    Replies
    1. I didn't go in until I was 22, I could shave, but was still pretty wet behind the ears.

      Delete
  3. Nice. We always send the youngest to do the dirtiest work, it seems. One of the reasons why Europe is so screwed now, they lost two whole generations one way or another.

    Have you heard about the Super Eagle, the F-15X? They've turned the Eagle into a super bomb/missile truck with lots of advanced components and a longer life cycle. https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a22563768/super-eagle-f-15x/

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    Replies
    1. The youngest are the only ones with the stamina to fight, and win, a war.

      Juvat links to that same article on Monday. (Yes, in some small ways I can "see" the future.)

      Delete
    2. Oh, my, toes stepped on, yadda-yadda.

      Can't wait to read the future...

      Delete
  4. Fine looking group, and not a mitten wearer in the bunch.

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  5. No Pajama Boys (or girls) in that group! I see a fine, YOUNG bunch of fighting men and women, ready to defend our skies.

    When we'd have active duty people visit us on the Iowa, I always marveled at how young they were, and how intelligent.

    And the reverence they showed the ship was humbling.

    Yep, I sleep very well, too.

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  6. I agree, they aren't "kids" but fine young men and women who deserve a salute.

    As for the grey hair, I ran across a picture of me at my last re-enlistment. SWMBO said "Look, no grey!"

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    Replies
    1. Yup.

      As to the lack of grey at the final re-up, me too. Balding yes, greying? Not at the time. But I've made up for lost ground over the past cuppla.

      Delete
  7. I'm proud of 6 of my younger relatives- all in their late teens to mid-20s who have stepped up to serve. Unfortunately, they're all USAF or Army. I guess I wasn't a very good example for them!

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  8. Interesting Fin Flash. Can't find ST on any site listing.

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    1. After some strenuous Google-Fu, I found this. "ST" is the tail code for the 82nd TRW at Sheppard. They received a number of F-15Cs for crew chief, armaments, avionics training.

      That tail code wasn't on any of the usual websites.

      Delete
    2. I wonder who flies them and what kind of missions and...if they could use some help.

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    3. Hhmm, sounds like we hae a volunteer.

      I wonder if they actually fly them?

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    4. How would they know they actually worked if someone didn't go and check them?

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    5. And you wouldn't even have to leave Texas!

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  9. I got to spend some time at Sheppard AFB, at the beginning of my crew chief training. My class was mostly Reserve and Air Guard people and, as the senior ranking, I became the leader of that horde. A good time was had by all, except for one of our instructors.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

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    Replies
    1. Hahaha! I can imagine you running that instructor ragged!

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    2. Well, it wasn't exactly like that, but I became friends with her boss after my second visit with him.

      Paul

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    3. Now there's a story waiting to be told!

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Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)