August 2022 in review

  • Published
  • By Bradley J. Clark
  • 908th Airlift Wing

August, 2022 was a busy month for the 908th Airlift Wing at Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama.

It started with the 30-year anniversary of the 908th Operation Support Squadron, constituted on August 1, 1992.

Simultaneously, Air Force Reserve Command’s only wing in the state saw its Commander and Command Chief spend the first three days of the month at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia where other leaders throughout AFRC gathered to see Maj. Gen. John Healy promote to Lt. Gen., then for the AFRC change of command ceremony, presided over by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. CQ Brown, Jr., where Healy took command from outgoing AFRC commander Lt. Gen. Richard Scobee. Following the change of command ceremony, Scobee had his retirement ceremony after 36 years of service.

August 4, 2022, saw firefighters from the 908th Civil Engineer Squadron head to Fort Benning, Georgia where they experienced a series of firsts for the section; first-time conducting joint interoperability training with U.S. Army firefighters and the first-time conducting training on a helicopter, helping the 908th firefighters lean forward in preparation the 908th’s remission to the MH-139A Grey Wolf helicopter formal training unit. Then on August 5, 2022, the same firefighters trained at Maxwell AFB on a building/structure trainer as part of their annual requirements to be ready for anything when the alarm sounds.

VIDEO | 01:51 | Joint interoperability: fire training at Fort Benning and Maxwell Air Force Base help 908th firefighters accelerate change for MH-139A Grey Wolf mission

Saturday, August 6, 2022, the unit training assembly opened up with the premiere of the “State of the 908th: ‘Back to Basics’ with Col. Craig Drescher,” a 30-minute sit down formal interview with the 908 AW commander and 908 AW public affairs specialist Senior Airman Austin Jackson. The two discussed the wing's new Mission Statement, Vision Statement, and Priorities. They also talked about how Drescher wants the wing to take advantage of this transitionary period to get "back to the basics" by focusing on improving fitness standards, medical readiness, enlisted and officer performance reports, and dress and appearance.

Later that same day, and continuing throughout the UTA, the 908th Command Team consisting of: Drescher; Vice Commander, Col. Casey Burril; and Command Chief, Chief Master Sgt. Tracy Cornett, conducted an “MVP tour,” where they visited units across the wing to discuss the new Mission Statement, Vision Statement and Wing Priorities, while also holding question and answer sessions with wing members.

That afternoon, the wing welcomed new 908th Operations Group Commander, Col. Shane Devlin during an assumption of command ceremony. Devlin joined the wing from Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi, where he served as the director of inspections for the 403rd Wing.

Closing out Saturday of the UTA was an event that began back in July, 2022, and for the day, started earlier than any other part of the wing. Defenders from the 908th Security Forces Squadron spent the day at Fort Rucker, Alabama, qualifying on their “heavy weapons,” the M203 grenade launcher, M240B machine gun, and M249 light machine gun.

VIDEO | 01:51 | 908 SFS aims for success

On Monday, August 8, 2022, the wing learned that former 908 AW Commander, Col Kenneth Ostrat, currently serving as the Mobilization Assistant to the Director of Integration and Innovation, Deputy Chief of Staff, Air Force Futures Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Pentagon, Washington D.C., has been confirmed by the Senate for promotion and appointment to Brigadier General.

Beginning the third week of the month, the 908th welcomed approximately 20 members home after more than three months in Europe supporting U.S. European Command and U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa operations.

August 15 saw another day in 908th history remembered. On that date in 1945, the 357th Bomb Squadron flew its last mission of WW II, which happened to be one of the last missions of the entire war.

On Tuesday, August 16, 2022, the 25th Aerial Port Squadron received a highline from the 910th Airlift Wing at Youngstown Air Reserve Station, Ohio

The Chief of Air Force Reserve announced Friday, August 19, 2022, that Chief Master Sgt. Tracy Cornett, Command Chief Master Sgt. of the 908th Airlift Wing was selected to become the new Command Chief Master Sgt. of the 916th Air Refueling Wing at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina. Cornett has been with the 908th since September 2019.

Nearing the end of the month, the 908th remembered another significant day in the unit’s history August 24, 1992, this time it was the 30-year anniversary of members from the 357th Airlift Squadron and the 25th Aerial Port Squadron deploying to Homestead Air Reserve Base, Florida to assist in recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Andrew.

VIDEO | 01:00 | Around the Wing in 60 Seconds - August 2022