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NEWS | June 2, 2008

It's been an honor

By Chief Master Sgt. Leroy E. Frink 316th Wing command chief master sergeant

To the men and women of Team Andrews, I have come to a crossroad in my career where I must move on to another assignment. I want to pause to reminisce on the accomplishments of Team Andrews during this period. Shortly after I arrived to Andrews, I challenged each of us to sync our goals with the Chief of Staff of the Air Force's top 3 priorities, "Winning the War on Terrorism, Develop and Care for Airmen and Recapitalizing our Air Force."

It's my opinion that we have been successful in these endeavors because of the dedication and hard work of you and your families. During the past two years, we have deployed thousands of Airmen and tons of equipment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. Many performed outside of their primary duties filling in-lieu-of taskings. Our Airmen have been recognized for their bravery with decorations and other accolades.

To better prepare Airmen, we renovated the Airman Leadership School, doubled its student capacity and developed other programs to ensure our Airmen are prepared for the future. Additionally, we upgraded the base library computers and started new housing construction.

In efforts to contribute to the recapitalization of our Air Force, we made tough decisions that have impacted your quality of life, like closing the Liberty Hall Dining Facility. We endured personnel cuts at every level, yet you have continually performed at a high level.

In addition, you have excelled when Team Andrews has been called upon by senior leadership to support other tasks. You performed admirably during the funeral honors of former President Gerald R. Ford, Queen Elizabeth II's state visit to the United States, and hosting Pope Benedict XVI's arrival, the first Papal visit to the United States in over 29 years. Our Airmen have emceed the Air Force's 60th Birthday Celebration at the Pentagon, supported local schools, and paid tribute to our veterans at the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home, Charlotte Hall, Md., and the Collington Episcopal Life Care Community, Mitchellville, Md.

I thank each of you for what you do each day, maintaining an attitude of professionalism and always striving to do your best regardless of the circumstances. Moreover, a military installation's success is often enhanced by the support it receives from the local community. I want to thank the great citizens of Prince George's County and the local businesses for supporting me and Andrews.

It has been an honor to serve you as the 316th Wing and installation command chief. You have made my assignment exciting, absolutely fulfilling and memorable. Finally, I especially want to thank Col. Paul Ackerley, 316th Wing commander for his confidence in selecting and entrusting me as his command chief.

I will truly miss each of you as I transition to Seymour Johnson AFB, N.C. You will always have a special place in my heart and I pray that God will continually bless each of you in your future endeavors.