An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

NEWS | May 27, 2008

Thanks to Team Andrews

By Col. Eric A. Snadecki 316th Wing vice commander

Andrews is a place like no other. It is very hard to sit back and relish the amazing success of this past weekend. As we closed the gates to the public and marshaled them off the installation, Team Andrews was working at a feverish pace to bring the airfield back into "normal" operations and it didn't stop there.

That very night, we had security forces who had been working all weekend, posted on the ramp in preparation for a Presidential arrival. That night the 79th Medical Wing, who had ensured immediate medical response was available all weekend, welcomed an outside team for a demanding week long inspection.

The next morning Team Andrews was up at 5:30 a.m. for a 6 a.m. debris pick-up walk of the runways, which we did in record time due to the incredible support by all. The airfield was now ready to spend all day launching out Joint Service Open House aircraft and receiving back those that were displaced and had to perform their missions elsewhere. That day, we received a national-level airborne asset that required logistical "magic" to ensure appropriate support. All of this was completed in addition to the normal extremely high level missions that simply never stop at Andrews.

No, we really don't get an opportunity to bask in our success. As I drive around Andrews, there is no evidence that last weekend was any different than any other weekend. The pace continues and yesterday is a memory we will talk about "when we have time."

I would like to personally thank Lt. Col. Andrew Lourake, 316th Wing Plans and the chairman for the JSOH, and all of his incredible JSOH committee that included not only representatives from Team Andrews, but also others around the National Capital Region for the truly amazing effort and success. Everywhere I went this weekend, I would receive complements for the outstanding support and efforts that Colonel Lourake and the entire JSOH team provided.

The compliments came from everyone; individuals whose job it is to go around the world and thrill the public commented that this was "the best show;" the Blue Angels commented that the support they received was unparalleled and if they could take the team that supported them everywhere, they would; those not in the airshow business were awed and amazed by the incredible tribute to the military and aviation and the logistical feat required for such an awesome show.

All and all, each and every performer stated that they would love to come back to Andrews every year due to the spectacular support received. To all the JSOH committee members; thanks for all your hard work. It was recognized and appreciated by all!

As we approach this coming Memorial Day weekend, I hope we do get a moment to breath. While we honor those that have paid the ultimate sacrifice, Team Andrews can take pride in our nation, pride in our military, pride in Andrews and pride in a job extremely well done for JSOH 2008. Thank you all.