Department of Defense (DoD)

Face of Defense: Newest Thunderbird Continues Legacy

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Face of Defense: Newest Thunderbird Continues Legacy
02/28/2017 07:37 AM CST

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Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Jason Hughes, former 23d Aircraft Maintenance Squadron chief enlisted manager, poses in front of an A-10C Thunderbolt II at Moody Air Force Base, Ga., Feb. 10, 2017. Upon enlisting as an F-15 Strike Eagle crew chief in 1997, Hughes dedicated 20 years to servicing six airframes. Now, he will become the newest member of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. Air Force photo by Airman Gregory Nash

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Face of Defense: Newest Thunderbird Continues Legacy

By Air Force Airman Gregory Nash, Moody Air Force Base

MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga., Feb. 28, 2017 — Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Jason Hughes, the chief enlisted manager for the 23rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, dedicated 20 years to servicing six different airframes. Now, he’s accomplished another goal by becoming the newest member of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

“I’m humbled beyond words and the excitement is overwhelming in a great way,” Hughes said. “The Thunderbirds are the face of the Air Force and the chance to help tell their story and all of our individual stories to inspire and attract future generations of airmen is the most exciting thing.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Hughes added. “It’s hard to put into words and realize that this is actually happening. I’m excited to represent the Air Force on the grandest stage. It feels like a dream.”

Before this dream became a reality, Hughes was focused on other career opportunities on the horizon. Among these opportunities was the chance to work with the A-10 Thunderbolt II and rekindle his childhood passion.

Enticed by Moody’s A-10 mission, Hughes landed in southern Georgia to be the 74th Aircraft Maintenance Unit’s lead production superintendent.

Thunderbirds Are Go

After many years of contributing to the Flying Tigers’ heritage and achieving several milestones, Hughes says the stars finally aligned to pursue another challenge. As the chief enlisted manager at the 23rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, he saw an opening for the same position for the Thunderbirds and felt compelled to apply.

“I applied and had to go through a phone interview and then was asked to come to an air show and interact with the [Thunderbirds] team for another interview,” Hughes said. “I was nervous and excited the whole time, but no matter the results, I viewed it as an opportunity to interact with the best of the best in the Air Force. They were very professional, yet awesome and fun to be around. I wanted to be able to experience that camaraderie.”

According to Hughes, this esprit de corps was reminiscent of the Flying Tigers. The people, leadership, impact of the mission and support from the local community reminded him of his favorite assignment as a Moody airman, which he credits with preparing him for his transition.

“The mission tempo at Moody forces you to be at your absolute best,” Hughes said. “You can’t get done with one thing without preparing for two more. We’re a very busy, well-oiled machine that maintains a high standard. We’ve generated the best aircraft and personnel and have a track record of success to get the job done. I want to bring Moody’s culture of excellence and extend it to the Thunderbirds.”

Challenge, Reunion

As the incoming chief enlisted manager for the Thunderbirds, Hughes will provide advice to the commander about aircraft maintenance and be the enlisted force manager for two years.

“I’ll be guiding airmen in career fields I’ve never had close interactions with, but it will be a fun challenge that I’m looking forward to,” he said. “It will help broaden my experiences because I’ll not only have to get more acquainted with various jobs but also help the airmen progress in their career to be successful not only as Thunderbirds but for their future endeavors as well.”

Hughes will take on the role of managing 120 enlisted personnel spanning 25 different career fields. He’ll also reunite with a former Moody A-10 pilot, Air Force Capt. Erik Gonsalves, Thunderbird No. 8 advance pilot and narrator.

According to the 23rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron’s commander, Air Force Lt. Col. Bobby Buckner, this reunion highlights what Moody is achieving.

“It’s amazing what the base is accomplishing and it shows that we’re executing [23rd wing commander Air Force Col. Thomas E.] Kunkel’s priority of developing courageous leaders,” Buckner said. “We’re building world-class leaders and it reflects in the results of what our people are doing. Both Gonsalves and Hughes deployed with [the 23rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron] and were tested in combat operations, deployment operations and exhibited excellence at home station on a tough ramp. It just shows that they’re deserving.”

While Hughes doesn’t know what the future may hold, he says he’s honored to have been entrenched in the fight for Moody’s A-10 mission and that he’ll fully cherish the opportunity of donning the prestigious Thunderbird flight suit.

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Department of Defense (DoD)

U.S., Coalition Strikes Continue Against ISIS in Syria, Iraq

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U.S., Coalition Strikes Continue Against ISIS in Syria, Iraq
02/28/2017 07:28 AM CST

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U.S. Central Command continues to work with partner nations to conduct targeted airstrikes in Iraq and Syria as part of the comprehensive strategy to degrade and defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS.

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U.S., Coalition Strikes Continue Against ISIS in Syria, Iraq

From a Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve News Release

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Feb. 28, 2017 — U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria yesterday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.

Officials reported details of the latest strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.

Strikes in Syria

Coalition military forces conducted 15 strikes consisting of 18 engagements in Syria:

Department of Defense (DoD)

The SITREP: How Vets Contributed to Civil Rights, Marines Annihilate Threat & More

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The SITREP: How Vets Contributed to Civil Rights, Marines Annihilate Threat & More
02/27/2017 10:35 AM CST

From the military services and around the DoD, here’s your SITREP for Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017.
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Department of Defense (DoD)

U.S. Navy Photos of the Day Update

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You are subscribed to Photos of the Day for U.S. Navy. This information has recently been updated, and is now available.

PACIFIC OCEAN (Feb. 26, 2017)

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An F/A-18E Super Hornet assigned to the “Eagles” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 115 conducts aerial refueling operations with a U.S. Air Force KC-10A Extender. VFA-115 is traveling from Naval Air Facility Atsugi, Japan, to Naval Air Station Fallon, Nevada, to complete the strike fighter advanced readiness program. U.S. Navy photo by Lt. Chris Pagenkopf (Released) 170226-N-CF980-006

CAMP SHELBY, Miss. (Feb. 20, 2017)

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Sailors from Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 133 build a watch post during a field training exercise. Seabees around the world will take part in a year-long celebration in 2017 to commemorate the group’s 75-year anniversary in March. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Ignacio D. Perez (Released) 170220-N-TC437-182

SASEBO, Japan (Feb. 27, 2017)

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Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class Jose Garcia, center, and Aviation Ordnanceman Airman Steve Sarsaba heave a mooring line on the fantail of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) as the ship prepares to depart Sasebo, Japan. Bonhomme Richard is on a routine patrol, operating in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region to serve as a forward-capability for any type of contingency. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Diana Quinlan (Released) 170227-N-WF272-091

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (Feb. 25, 2017)

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Commander, U.S. 6th Fleet, Vice Adm. Christopher W. Grady answers a question from a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) Midshipman and freshman at the University of University of Notre Dame. Grady was one of the guest speakers at the 22nd annual Naval Leadership Weekend Seminar hosted by the Notre Dame NROTC unit attended by more than 250 future naval leaders. He is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and was commissioned an ensign through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps program. U.S. Navy photo by Scott A. Thornbloom (Released) 170225-N-IK959-844

Department of Defense (DoD)

Can you get a good night’s sleep in the military?

Health.mil
07/28/2017
good night

Can you get a good night’s sleep in the military?

Getting a good night’s sleep can be difficult for service members. The demands of military life are often at odds with proper rest, but even on active duty, you have options to improve your sleep.

Studies of service members by the Rand Corporation show that poor sleep can lead to a variety of mental and physical health concerns, including increased risk of posttraumatic stress disorder or depression. Poor sleep can also cause problems such as fatigue or daytime impairment during daily tasks.

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Mentorship creates unique comradery, opportunities for African Americans

Dr. Limone Collins Jr., Chief of Vaccine Safety and Evaluation, Defense Health Agency Immunization Healthcare Branch (DHA-IHB), has served the United States for more than 40 years, in the Army and later as a contractor and Department of Defense civilian.

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Limone Collins
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