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Vol. 78, No. 15 NEWS BRIEFS

March Air Reserve Base, California

Friday, April 19, 2013

The world’s fastest aviators swing by the March Museum

IN MEMORIAM OF Master Sergeant Anthony Roland, a member of the 912th Air Refueling Squadron at March Air Reserve Base, passed away, April 5. If there are any persons with claims against his estate, please contact the March ARB legal office at 951-655-4479. 452 MAINTENANCE GROUP SETS UP FOR SQUADRON PHOTOS The 452d Maintenance Group has set aside a KC-135 and C-17 static for squadron photos, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 20. After this event, the next opportunity for squadron photos will be the September UTA. To take advantage of this opportunity, please contact Tech. Sgt. Andrew McLaughlin at andrew. Note: Squadrons are responsible for providing their own photographer and only squadron photos at the C-17 or KC-135 are allowed. Photos toward the F16s or any other areas on the flightline are not authorized.

by Staff Sgt. Joe Davidson 452 AMW public affairs

Visitors to the March Field Air Museum were given a special treat April 6 and 7, when former pilots of the famous SR-71 Blackbird stopped by to talk about what it was like to fly the world’s fastest aircraft. The aircraft, which is one of several that have been retired and put on display at various locations throughout the country, is one of the many highlights that visitors to the museum can expect to see on a regular basis. Former Blackbird pilots visit the museum each year to talk about their experiences with the aircraft, but according to museum officials for this year’s event, they tried something new to boost audience participation. Using creative space management techniques, the museum caretakers skillfully arranged the seating around the Blackbird so the attendees could almost “feel” its majestic presence. Former SR-71 pilot, retired Lt. Col. Gerald Glasser, sat in the pilot seat and answered questions while demonstrating flight operations using a remote camera setup to view the cockpit.

Glasser. “This is awesome,” said Kendrick. “I didn’t realize it was so big. This aircraft

See SR-71, page 6

U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joe Davidson

Retired Lt. Col. Gerald Glasser, former SR-71 Blackbird pilot, addresses a crowd of spectators at the March Field Air Museum presentation of the SR-71, the world’s fastest aircraft, April 6 and 7. Glasser, along with other former Blackbird pilots delivered a host of memorable events, spoke of little-known facts about the aircraft and mingled with the visitors. The pilots were on hand for the popular annual two-day event, which continues to draw larger and larger audiences.

Retired ‘crew dogs’ keep Norton’s legacy alive by Scott Johnston AFCEC public affairs

Use your smartphone to connect to the March Air Reserve Base official public website via the Microsoft tag app.

Shannon Kendrick, an emergency medical technician for the State of California and visitor to the museum, was lucky to get her SR-71 magazine autographed by

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. – Thanks to a group of retired Air Force C-141 “crew dogs,” the legacy of Norton Air Force Base, lives on. Members of the 63rd and 445th Airlift Wing’s Veterans Group were instrumental in the recent opening of the Norton Air Force Base Museum, located in the former NCO Club at the San Bernardino International Airport. Since closure in 1994, Norton has been transformed into a giant business complex where retail companies have replaced military warehouses and facilities. Thousands now work at the former 2,200-acre base, arriving daily for jobs in aviation, manufacturing, distribution and logistics.

Therefore, it seemed like a good idea to the Old Crew Dogs, who logged thousands of hours in Norton’s C-141 Starlifters, to have a place to share Norton’s military history with the public. Working with the Inland Valley Development Authority, who acquired the land from the Air Force, the retired sergeants gathered artifacts, recruited volunteers and helped physically transform Norton’s NCO Club into the museum. The 1,000-square-foot building sat empty for years before it finally began taking shape a year ago with $50,000 in seed money and space donated by the Inland Valley Development Agency. “This building was part of the overall property transfer of land from the Air Force to the IVDA following the closure,” said Catherine Pritchett, senior assistant to the IVDA’s executive director. “It started out as

just an empty space and we’ve transformed it into what we feel is a great place to keep the history of Norton Air Force Base alive. We’re very excited about it.” Along with the opening of the museum, the group is also completing a memorial wall at the entryway. A C-141 replica of the “Hanoi Taxi” tops the memorial of engraved bricks. The “Hanoi Taxi” was the first plane to bring prisoners of war home from Vietnam. The museum contains many items donated by retired Airmen and civilians who worked at Norton while it was active. Over the past several years, the Old Crew Dogs have been collecting historical items and reaching out to veterans throughout the region to find pieces needed to tell the Norton See CREW DOGS, page 7

April 19, 2013




Volume 78, Number 15

452 AMW Public Affairs

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Darnell Gardner 452 AMW EDITORIAL STAFF Master Sgt. Linda Welz Tech. Sgt. Megan Crusher Staff Sgt. Joe Davidson Staff Sgt. Carrie Peasinger The Beacon is published by Aerotech News and Review. Aerotech is a private firm in no way connected with the U.S. Air Force, under exclusive written contract with the 452nd Air Mobility Wing. This civilian enterprise Air Force newspaper is an authorized publication for employees and members of U.S. military services, retirees and family members. Contents are not necessarily the official views of, or endorsed by, the U.S. Government, the Department of Defense or the Department of the Air Force. The appearance of advertising in this newspaper, including inserts or supplements, does not constitute endorsement of the products or services by the Department of Defense, the Department of the Air Force or Aerotech News and Review, Inc. Everything advertised in this newspaper shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, user or patron. Editorial content is edited, prepared and provided by the staff of the 452nd Air Mobility Wing Public Affairs office at March Air Reserve Base. All photographs in the Beacon are Air Force photos unless otherwise stated. For advertising, contact Aerotech directly at 877-247-9288.

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The men I left behind by Capt. Belena S. Marquez Air Force Special Operations Command public affairs

HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. – I am one of the thousands of women who have gone to war. I am neither unique nor exceptional. If you ask around, you will hear stories similar to mine. In the past, expectations for girls did not include the possibility of growing up to be veterans. We are not born warriors. We have been brought up in a way that makes it possible. To me, Women’s History Month was not only about recognizing the trailblazers of my gender; it is also about celebrating the change in our culture that makes the men in my life, who support me as an Airman, the norm instead of the exception. Father, brother, husband and friends; these are the men I left behind that early morning when I headed to Afghanistan. It was cold outside, but I made a quick phone call. “Daddy, I’m headed over now,” I said, when the line connected. We talked for a couple of minutes and before we hung up my dad whispered, “Be safe, sweetie.” Then I left. My dad stood behind me from the beginning. Growing up, he always told me that I could do and be whatever I wanted, as long as I worked hard for it. He made me

believe in myself. I ended up needing that belief on the days when I felt like I was not making a difference, when the mission seemed too tough to handle. When things were hard for me, my thoughts invariably went to the encouragement my dad always seemed to have just for me. On the days when I needed to keep my chin up and stay positive, I thought of my brother. My little brother was always trailing along behind me. When we were younger, he was always copying me and following my lead. He taught me that someone is always watching and learning from you. That lesson came in handy when I interacted with a culture so very different from my own. For some of the Afghans I worked with, I was an oddity. As a member of Provincial Reconstruction Team Zabul, I was a woman decked out in multi-cam when they were used to seeing the sun-bleached burkas that made the Afghan women in our area look like ghosts floating down the streets. However, thanks to my little brother, I was used to being observed. I knew that they were learning about my culture through my actions, just as I was learning about theirs. I discovered that the women I’d initially thought of as apparitions in the town were actually vibrant, opinionated and courageous as we worked together to build up

the female journalist program. For those in the service, it isn’t a shock to discover someone who is both a woman and a service member. Though sometimes it is hard for people who do not understand the military to fathom that my husband stayed and I left. Throughout my deployment, my husband had my back. While I was doing convoys and key leader engagements, he was taking care of our household. He was the one responsible for staying positive when I called. During those conversations, I relied on him to remind me of the world outside of my deployment. He sent care packages and waited for me to return. He brought me flowers when my plane touched down and I was finally home. The trip to Afghanistan and back reminded both of us that service is more significant than gender, but not everyone understands that. When I was enjoying my post-deployment vacation, I remembered someone else I left behind. I thought about a conversation I had with an ex-boyfriend when I was in high school. We were talking about what we wanted to do when we grew up and I mentioned that I wanted to join the Air Force. “Sweetie,” he said. “I don’t think that’ll be good for you. I don’t think you’re really tough enough for that.” Well, he can kiss my Combat Action Badge!

New resources promote fitness culture by Gloria Kwizera Air Force Personnel Center public affairs

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas – To help improve Total Force fitness levels, Air Force Personnel Center officials are fielding new fitness resources accessible online, in person or on DVD. These resources, including the Operational Fitness Program, Xtreme Wednesday Workouts, the Air Force Fitness DVDs and the Fitness on Request kiosks, are available to all Total Force Airmen, retirees and families, through base Fitness and Sports Centers and unit physical training leaders. The Operational Fitness Program provides detailed exercise plans for individuals of all fitness levels and is easily accessible on “The goal of the program is to help maintain resilient Airmen and encourage healthy lifestyles for our Air Force communities at large,” said Scott Nunnelly, the AFPC fitness program manager. “While the program isn’t mandatory, it provides a great baseline for people to maintain their fitness throughout the year.” Personnel center officials reached out to installation fitness and sports managers as well as exercise physiologists for their feedback to help develop the workout plans. Currently, the program offers detailed

workouts for three levels of fitness: Level One: Three bi-weekly routines that progressively become more difficult. The workouts build upon endurance, strength and power over the course of six weeks. This level is geared toward Airmen who need help passing their fitness test or those new to fitness. Level Two: For those who already exercise regularly, this level provides an alternative plan to help maintain or increase their current fitness level. Workouts incorporate both bodyweight and light dumbbell exercises. Level Three: For individuals at an advanced fitness level; an alternative to the commercial extreme conditioning programs. These rigorous workouts align with established fitness industry standards and guidelines to maintain safety. A challenging workout is provided daily and will be updated monthly to keep the workouts fresh. The services team also joined forces with the Pentagon Channel and developed 20 new fitness shows for the “Fit for Duty” television series. Xtreme Wednesday Workouts can be located on the Pentagon Channel website at Shows began airing on TPC and the American Forces Network Jan. 2. Airmen can download videos from the Third Party Collection website to build a customized workout library. The program features advanced strength and conditioning workouts geared toward Level 3 See FITNESS, page 3

April 19, 2013

The Beacon


disAsTEr prEpArATiON sEriEs

Prepare to survive: Food for thought by Robert Kaschak 452 AMW Emergency Management technician

As with any major earthquake, the damage will be substantial and the recovery process lengthy. Daily routines will be severely impacted; therefore, being able to sustain basic needs, such as maintaining food and water supplies, will become significant events, requiring managing by all survivors. Now, would be a good time to examine what stored supplies have been set aside for use after a disaster has struck. Check to ensure on-hand supplies are appropriate for a survival situation. There is an abundance of information on the Federal Emergency Management Agency ( and United States Geological Survey ( websites. Following a disaster, there may be power outages that could last for several days. Stock canned foods, dry mixes and other staples that do not require refrigeration, cooking, water or special preparation. Be sure to include a manual can opener and eating utensils. Here are some “food for thought,” or rather, “thoughts for food,” that should be considered when putting together emergency food supplies: from FITNESS, page 2 participants. The shows are also available through some cable providers. The 20 workouts will also be developed into Air Force Fitness DVDs, which will be available at base installations by late spring. “These fitness programs allow mem-

Store at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food; • Choose foods your family will eat • Remember to include special dietary needs • Avoid foods that will make you thirsty • Choose salt-free crackers, whole grain cereals and canned foods with high liquid content In addition to the basics, here are more suggested food supplies: • Ready-to-eat canned meats, fruits, vegetables • Protein, fruit bars, dried fruit, nuts, peanut butter • Dry cereal, granola, crackers • Canned juices, non-perishable pasteurized milk • Food for infants, comfort or stress foods If the power goes out, ensure you keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible. A refrigerator will keep food cold for about 4 hours if it is unopened. They should be kept at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, for proper food storage. It is also a good rule of thumb to have a refrigerator thermometer and know where dry ice can be purchased. If needed, alternative cooking sources should be ready available, such as candle warmers, chafing dishes, fondue pots or a fireplace. Charcoal grills and camp stoves are for outdoor use only.

bers to follow or build their own program to meet their fitness goals,” said Anthony Alcala, a fitness program specialist. The next phase in this initiative is to deliver the Fitness on Request Kiosks to over 60 installations. This system will supplement existing group exercise programs or

When handling and maintaining food, consider the following: • Do not eat foods from cans that are swollen, dented or corroded • Never eat any food that looks or smells abnormal • Do not let garbage accumulate around food stores, for fire and sanitation reasons • Thawed food usually can be eaten if it is still “refrigerator cold.” It can be re-frozen if it still contains ice crystals. To be safe, remember, “When in doubt, throw it out.” Members should be able to readily gauge where they are in the preparation stage and where they need to be. Remember, the items mentioned should not be taken verbatim, but should give ideas on what essentials should be stored for your family. We cannot predict the amount of damage that will occur, or the recovery period resulting from a disaster; however, it is a safe to assume services will be severely limited for several days. So, for your security and that of your family, take a “bite” out of the preparedness phase by putting your own food supply together. Periodically, check it and rotate as needed. Next week’s article will discuss water preparation. Remember, not if a disaster happens, but when!

installations that can no longer fund their group exercise contract, Alcala said. Loaded with 30 pre-recorded classes, the kiosks will offer fitness centers the flexibility and convenience to offer more individual or group classes than before. Installations will receive kiosks by late summer, with the

first deliveries slated for this month. For more information on these new fitness resources and other quality of life programs, visit or To set up a class, contact a local installation fitness center or unit physical training leader

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April 19, 2013

‘Every dollar counts’ ushers in new savings culture by Amaani Lyle Air Force public affairs

WASHINGTON, D.C., – With budgets shrinking, Air Force leaders are calling on Airmen to share their best money-saving ideas through the Every Dollar Counts campaign. In the wake of sequestration, the initiative marks a cultural shift that empowers Airmen to find and recommend areas for savings that may be used to support readiness needs, said Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Larry Spencer. Beginning May 1, Airmen can submit their cost-reducing ideas via the Airmen Powered by Innovation websites while at home, the office, or on their smartphone. Links to those sites will be released soon. Both uniformed and civilian Air Force members can participate in the month-long open call for ideas and share their creative and efficient ways to save money and time. “When things get tough, Airmen figure out a way to get it done,” Spencer said. “We have some of the most

innovative folks in the world, so I know there are ideas about how we can do things better.” Spencer’s resource management and budget-related background amplifies the urgency to mine those ideas. “We stopped flying one-third of Air Force active duty combat-coded fighter squadrons in April and we’re projected to slow down or stop the flow of aircraft and engines in the depots,” Spencer said. Furthermore, he said, the Air Force must trim about $11 billion in the last half of fiscal year 2013. Additionally, our overseas contingency operations funding is almost $2 billion short so we have to make up that difference as well. In addition, the challenge is compounded by the sequester timeline, which officially began March 1. “We have to squeeze a year’s worth of cuts into about six months,” Spencer said of the Air Force budget. “So there’s a lot of money to be taken out of our budget in a short period of time I’ve never seen anything quite like it.” Airmen at every level should feel

less encumbered by perhaps dated, or unnecessary Air Force Instructions or guidelines when brainstorming costcutting measures, the general said. “Airmen Powered by Innovation means go into that file of good ideas that were maybe ‘too hard to do,’ pull them out and submit them,” Spencer declared. “If it’s a good idea and requires an Air Force Instruction

change, then we’ll see if we can do that.” Spencer wants Airmen to submit their ideas regardless of the idea’s potential savings. “Whether it’s $500, $1 million or $30 million, we want to hear it because those dollars add up,” he said. “We’re taking every angle we can to

See SAVINGS, page 5

The The Beacon

THE CHAPlAIN’S CORNER by Senior Airman Sarah Dyroff 452 AMW Chaplain services

The blooms of Spring have finally made their grand appearance, so why not take a moment to go outside, enjoy the vibrant sights and breathe the sweet fragrances in the air. Each season has its own special meaning and spring reminds me of two: life and hope. A few weeks earlier, two major religious holidays were celebrated, Passover and Easter. Those who celebrated Passover paused to remember years long ago, when God brought people out of slavery into freedom, with promise of a brighter future. During Easter, believers reflected on the acts of one person who endured much pain and death, yet through it all, brought renewed life and meaning for generations to come. Growing up in the Northeast near Lake Ontario, I endured long, cold winters for many years. Out of all the seasons given, winter was the harshest. The temperatures stayed well below freezing, for what seemed like months at a time. The days were dark and dreary, leaving us to wonder if spring would ever come. Then, we began to notice a change; the snow would start melting, the ice would thaw, and before we knew it, the sweet smell of grass and flowers began to scent the air. Life can be tough, cold and dark, just like the seasons; perhaps you are in a season like this right now. Let me remind you that no matter how endless hard times seem or how dark it may get and cold it may feel, there is still hope – a life with new meaning awaits you. The challenges, trials and pain we face in life will not last forever. Remember, life is like a season and just like the appearance of Spring, we again breathe the sweet fragrances of new life and hope. So, take heart and be encouraged! Even when we feel alone in our trials and tough seasons, a new season awaits us, filled with joy and blessing.

April 2013 April 19,19, 2013


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from SAVINGS, page 4 manage our money and ‘buy’ as much mission as we can,” he said. “In that sense, every Airman, whether they’re at a wing or headquarters can help.” Spencer said the Every Dollar Counts campaign does not just focus on our wings but includes those large centrally managed accounts as well. “The Centralized Asset Management Office at Wright Patterson Air Force Base manages the money we spend on flying hours, sustaining space operations and depot operations – more than $16 billion – so we’re tak-

ing a close review of that account to determine how we can stretch those dollars. “This is an opportunity to not only look at homegrown ideas, but broader ideas that affect the larger Air Force as well.” The general expressed optimism in quickly finding solutions through ideas. “Innovation is what we’re all about,” Spencer said. “This is our family and we’re going to get through this because we’ve got great Airmen to help see us through this.”


13AUAM0046 • AC-0255


April 19, 2013

from SR-71, page 1 has always been one of my favorites.” The small band of pilots were happy to talk about how they became pilots in the aircraft, the missions they flew and some of their more personal thoughts about their place in history. “I was in the F-5 program at Edwards Air Force Base in Palmdale, Calif.,” said Glasser. “It was the home of the Space Shuttle program and the B-1 Lancer, with the SR-71 depot across the runway. I was lucky enough to get invited over by the Blackbird commander to get a hands-on feel of the aircraft. When I strapped in, the commander said that I should apply to the program because they needed pilots with my skills.” The selection process for potential SR-71 pilots was about six months long. We had to endure physicals, psychological evaluations, a seven-hour long simulator flight and two evaluation flights. “I thought I did my best during the evaluations, but I never thought I would be selected. Six months later, I got the call that I was selected for the SR-71 program – that was back in 1980. All of the pilots that wanted to fly the Blackbird felt the same way. You just never know when hard work and good fortune come together,” added Glasser. Not all of the Blackbird pilots were fighter jocks. Some of the entrants piloted the B-52 Stratofortress, F-4 Phantom, F-111 Aardvark and Tactical Reconnaissance -1 (TR-1), an aircraft similar in design to the U-2 spy plane.

According to Glasser, the SR-71 program was highly successful because of the varied backgrounds of the pilot group. Many of the pilots flew missions during the 1970s and 80s. The shoot down of U-2 pilot Gary Powers over Soviet airspace, resulted in the signing of a treaty prohibiting military over flight rights between the two countries. At this juncture, the Central Intelligence Agency and U.S. Air Force determined that a new and improved aircraft would need to be developed in order to continue aerial surveillance activities. This brought about the concept of a high altitude, high speed aircraft that could easily evade enemy pursuit or air defense weapons. The A-12 Spy plane, a popular forerunner to the SR-71, was developed in January 1960. This aircraft met speed and altitude requirements, but was unable to completely fulfill its mission because of the overflight restrictions imposed by the treaty with the Soviet Union. It was at that time [1962] the Air Force initially reviewed the mock-up design of the SR-71, primarily due to its peripheral camera. It allowed the aircraft to fly reconnaissance, parallel to Soviet [or any] airspace without breaching sovereign airspace. The CIA submitted an order for twelve of these aircraft. President Johnson formally announced the existence of the Blackbird in July 1964 and in October, the SR-71 prototype was delivered to Palmdale for continued development. In December, it was determined that Beale AFB, Calif., would be the SR-71’s home base. The SR-71A completed its first flight with test pilot Bob Gilliland at the controls, Dec. 22. In 1967, A-12s flew reconnaissance missions out of Kadena Air Base, Japan, in support of “Black Shield,” during the Vietnam conflict. Later that year, a “flyoff ” competition was held between the SR-71 and the A-12, with the SR-71 prevailing. In February 1968, SR-71s were flown in to replace the A-12s, with its first operational mission flown on March 21. Use of the SR-71 continued into the 1970s and 80s, but not before accumulating several speed and flight altitude records – notably, 85,068 feet altitude, in horizontal flight and speed over an established course ( London to Los Angeles) in 3 hours and 47 minutes. Personal experiences and memorable missions flown by pilots at the March Field Air Museum event included one flown by Lt. Col. Rod Dyckman: “During my time in the airplane, I’ve had four or five engines failures – fortunately, not all at the same time,” said Dyckman. “One of those instances happened when I was flying a mission around Cuba. When one of my engines failed, I thought I was going to have to ditch the Blackbird in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico, because my air refueling tanker had already departed the airspace and the naval station at New Orleans was too far off. So, with quick

thinking, I radioed the tanker and directed it to do what is called a “fighter directed” turn back toward us. We were able to refuel and get the aircraft back to the coastline. It was quite a task to refuel this airplane on a single engine.” “For me, the Libya mission we flew in 1986 was one of those memorable events,” said Glasser. “The sortie had some major refueling and threat issues, but my Reconnaissance Systems Officer, Ron Tabor and I, were very privileged to fly the successful seven hour mission.” He also recalled the thrills flying a high Mach supersonic mission, four sunsets and three sunrise sorties in the West – shuttle astronauts only get to see sunrises in the East. “The aircraft is reasonably easy to fly but difficult to manage because there is so much going on systems-wise, that must be continually analyzed,” added Glasser. “You’re paid to manage the airplane, think four hundred miles ahead of the profile and get the bird home safely. You have to really challenge yourself to stay focused and concentrate on the big picture. The RSOs really deserve the credit. They were the “conductors of the orchestra” by providing the information. We, (the pilots) were the first violins, just focused on keeping the pointed end in the right direction and getting the aircraft home.” Officials at the March Field Air Museum will continue to improve on the SR-71 event, along with other displays designed to attract aircraft enthusiasts of all ages.

Dirty thursday Colonel Samuel Mahaney, 452d Air Mobility Wing commander, left, performs an identification check on a March member entering the base, during his hands-on program called “Dirty Thursday,” April 11. Mahaney was given an orientation brief on the daily operations of the 452d Security Forces Squadron, which was followed by a shadowing session with Tech. Sgt. Michael Huerta and Staff Sgt. Jacinto Nunez, at the front gate. Dirty Thursday allows the commander to work alongside Airmen, getting his hands and clothes dirty. He noted that it is a great opportunity to know the people who work in the wing, as well as a chance to learn what individuals are really doing to support the mission. U.S. Air Force photo/Darnell Gardner

April 19, 2013

The Beacon

story. On display, are historical items from the C-141s based at Norton in the late 1960s. Famous passengers, like comedian Bob Hope, left memorabilia from his USO tours and photos of Senator John McCain, who took the Hanoi Taxi home in 1973 after his release from Vietnam as a POW, were also present. Also on display, is a wooden chair from the control tower and old uniforms, medals and ribbons from military personnel stationed there. These items, plus many more, offers visitors an educational look into the former base’s vast history.

Members of the museum board are still looking for donations to expand the offerings at the museum. “Each section of the museum will act as a chapter in telling the story of the former Norton Air Force Base,” said Robert Edwards, president of the Norton AFB Museum’s board of directors. “We have many items that we are very excited to display, but there’s always room for more and we’d love for people to bring their stuff in and let us tell their story.” For those interested in visiting the museum, it is located at 1601 E. Third St. San Bernardino, Calif. Call (909) 382-7307 or visit for hours and directions. Admission is free.

Photo/Scott Johnston

The flight suit of the first female aircraft commander, Lt. Col. Kathy La Sauce, adorns a mannequin at the new Norton Air Force Base Museum.

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Reservists asked to participate in Community Assessment Survey ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. – The 2013 Air Force Community Assessment Survey launched April 5 and all members of the Air Force Reserve team who are asked to participate are encouraged to do so. The assessment is designed to assist chaplains and people working in installation-level Airman and family readiness centers, family advocacy programs, health and wellness centers, mental health clinics and child and youth programs to better meet the needs of service members and their families. “We need to make sure our programs are meeting the needs of Airmen and their families,” said Chief Master Sgt. of the Air Force James A. Cody. “This survey is one way we can learn how well we’re doing that. It’s every Airman’s responsibility to provide some honest feedback to help.” Topics covered in the survey include personal and family adjustment, individual and family adaptation, community well-being, deployment, resiliency, post-traumatic stress and help-seeking

stigma. The Community Assessment Survey is a total force effort. Approximately 160,000 active-duty members, 40,000 reservists, 40,000 Air National Guard members, 160,000 spouses of activeduty members, 10,000 spouses of reservists and 10,000 spouses of ANG members will be randomly selected to participate in the survey. All appropriated fund civilians also will be asked to participate in the survey. The survey will be available through May 30 and is completely anonymous. A notification letter, including a link to the Web-based survey, will be sent out to the work email address of each service member selected to participate. Spouses will be sent a postcard in the mail with the Web link. Everyone selected is encouraged to participate to aid in the success of the project. The survey should take participants 30-45 minutes to complete. Data collected from the survey will be analyzed and briefed to wing and Air

See SURVEY, page 9

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April 19, 2013

On the home stretch

by Senior Master Sgt. Richard M. Johnson Jr. 452 AMW, Volunteer Income Tax Assistance coordinator

The March Air Reserve Base Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax center has had another banner year, as the last week of tax preparation season comes to an end, April 19. According to Ms. Effie White, VITA center volunteer, the all-volunteer staff excelled at accurately preparing, reviewing and filing tax returns for a large part of the March community. “Most individuals who filed their returns electronically through the March ARB VITA site received their refunds within two to three weeks,” said White. “I could not be more impressed with our team of volunteers this year. Our team was comprised of three civilians, four 912th Air Refueling Squadron members, an U.S. Army officer and a few more volunteers who worked part-time, according to their schedules. Once again, we propelled the only VITA site in the Air Force Reserve Command to record numbers.” U.S. Army Maj. Anthony Gordon, judge advocate, 358th Civil Affairs Brigade, explained that volunteering at the VITA tax center gave him the opportunity to interact with members representing the different services that make up the U.S. Armed Forces. Helping members take care of important tax obligations so they could focus on their jobs of protecting this nation was a pleasure, he said. Major Deric Prescott, 951 RSPTS Staff Judge Advocate, explained that more than 820 returns were prepared and filed, as of April 4. “These returns resulted in over $906,000 in federal and $175,411 in state refunds – resulting in over one million dollars in refunds for our base population and veterans, while

saving our members over $150,000 in tax preparation fees from a paid preparer,” said Prescott. The VITA center was unable to provide service on the Unit Training Assembly weekends, due to a lack of volunteers. However, they were often seen working long after the doors were closed at 4 p.m. Ms. Marylyn Hackett, volunteer office manager and retired 4th Air Force Chief Master Sgt., noted that although some clients were required to adjust

Staff Sgt. Sara Luna, 912th Air Refueling Squadron, works with Theeraya Kline, volunteer spouse, at the March Air Reserve Base Volunteer Income Tax Assistance tax center. The all-volunteer staff at the March VITA tax center prepared and filed more than 820 federal and state tax returns for Tax Year 2012, for members of the March community, free of charge.

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their work schedules and endure longer wait-times for their returns, the advantage of having a tax center that understood the intricacies of military life, far outweighed any inconvenience. When 4 p.m. rolled around and customers were still present, the workflow kept going until the job was done, Hackett said. Staff Sgt. Richard Kline and wife Theeraya, both volunteered in the tax center and as an added bonus,


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The The Beacon from TAX, page 8 Theeraya frequently brought in baked goods for the volunteers and the clients. “We started volunteering around Jan. 11. For hours, I would say about 75 total hours of my time was spent helping some of the younger Airmen in my squadron with preparing their taxes. I would walk them through the process, step-by-step, on how to properly file their taxes, so they truly understood how each part worked,” said Sergeant Kline. A veteran preparer, Staff Sgt. Sara Luna, 912th ARS, developed a solid working knowledge on how to retrieve the largest “legal” return possible. “I started working at tax center last year. During that time, I worked approximately 236 hours. On my return from SURVEY, page 7 Force leaders. The information will help make community-wide program planning and resource allocation decisions, which ultimately enhance the quality of life, readiness and retention of Air Force personnel. “Everything we do depends on our people, the living engine of our Air Force,” said Air Force Secretary Michael Donley. “The entire Air Force leadership team is committed to doing all we can to support our Total Force Airmen and their families. We know that through your valuable input, the state of our Air Force will remain strong, ready and capable of delivering airpower, whenever and wherever the nation calls.” Previous survey results are credited with expanding financial counseling programs to members and their families, developing a user-friendly support network for Air Force single parents and

as a VITA volunteer, I increased my efforts by working approximately 270 hours,” said Luna. “I thoroughly enjoy volunteering at the tax center on base each year. I have gained an immense amount of knowledge regarding the rules involved with the Internal Revenue Service and the filing of federal and a multitude of state returns. It is extremely rewarding when customers express their gratitude for our free filing services, our expertise and professionalism. Tech. Sgt. Crystal Goff and I were usually able to find little-known deductions for military members – saving them even more money on their returns. If interested in volunteering at the March VITA tax center next year, please call 951-655-3659 or e-mail

setting up marriage-support seminars for junior enlisted members and their spouses. “This survey has been done every two years since 1988, giving a long-range perspective of trends,” said Chaplain Lt. Col. David Sumrall, executive director of the Air Force Reserve Command Community Action Information Board. “The command will receive a consolidated Reserve population breakout and Reserve installations will receive a report specific to their location. Reserve tenant units will be incorporated into the host base report and should participate in the host base CAIB and Integrated Delivery System to develop a community action plan that meets the requirements of the total force base population.” This survey is not to be confused with the Chief of Staff Climate Survey, which was administered in the spring of 2012 and the results of which were recently released.

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April 19, 2013 NEWS BRIEFS

MARCH ID OFFICE ClOSED FOR UPGRADES The 452d Air Mobility Wing ID card office, Bldg. 2314, will be closed April 29 to 30 and May 1, for upgrades. To make an appointment please log onto, https://rapids-appointments.dmdc.osd. mil. REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN FOR 2013 YEllOW RIBBON EVENTS The events will provide programs, resources, referrals and services to minimize stress on families during all phases of deployment. The following upcoming events are now open for registration: • San Diego, Calif., 17 to 19 May (B UTA) For more information, contact Senior Master Sgt. Jo Carrillo at 951-655-2571 or Email GET YOUR RECREATION ON RecOn is a new Air Force program operated by Outdoor Recreation, that offers free trips to Airmen who have deployed within the past year, includ-

ing their immediate family members. The following trips have been scheduled: • Apr. 20. Tandem hang gliding (San Bernardino mountains); Deadline Apr. 12 •Apr. 27. Tandem hang gliding (San Bernardino mountains); Deadline Apr. 19 •May 18–19. Whitewater rafting (Kern River); Deadline May 3 •May 31–Jun. 2. Whitewater rafting (Kern River); Deadline May 17 For more information, contact Outdoor Recreation at 951-655-2816. TRANSITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM SlOTS AVAIlABlE Los Angeles Air Force Base will conduct Fiscal Year 2013 TAP classes for interested military and family members. The following dates are available: May 13–17 Jun. 10–14 Jul. 15–19 Aug. 12–16 Sept. 16–20 Reservists will not be reimbursed for travel or per diem. To make reser-

vations, call 310-653-5428. SAFETY ADVISORY CONTINUED Drivers and pedestrians traveling near the Air Traffic Control Tower, Bldg. 1220, should proceed with caution due to the construction of the new tower. In addition, the gate entering the Flightline at Base Ops (F18) is now closed. All personnel needing access will still sign in at Base Ops, then enter the Flightline through the gate at Security Forces (Bldg. 470). The gate will be closed for approximately one year. MARCH COMMISSARY HOlDS COUPON CONTEST The March commissary will hold a contest to see which customer can redeem the most coupons in a single transaction during the month of April. To enter, write your name, address and phone number on the receipt and drop in the entry box located at the ID desk. The top three winners will be announced at the end of the month. 1st place - $150 in gift cards 2nd place - $100 in gift cards 3rd place - $50 in gift cards

VOlUNTEER FIT TO FIGHTER’S NEEDED FOR MARATHON Lt. Col. Jason Ausdemore and the March Company Grade Officer Council are forming a team to run the upcoming San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon, June 2. The Knights of Heroes empowers children who have lost their fathers during military service by providing positive adult mentorship, character development and lasting friendships during their annual wilderness adventure camp in Colorado. Military and civilian personnel and their families are welcome to join. For more details visit www.knightsofheroes. org or contact Lt. Col. Ausdemore at 951-655-3703 or MARCH COMMISSARY HOlDS CASE lOT SAlE There will be a case lot sale held at the March commissary from Thursday, May 2, to Saturday, May 4. This outdoor event will host industry partners with their best deals on bulk and case items. For more information, call 951-653-2206.

Beacon - April 19, 2013