Troop welfare is top priority

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Craig Drescher
  • 357th Airlift Squadron
Twenty-two years ago I walked into a recruiting office, raised my hand and started my military career. I wanted to serve my country, I wanted to fly in airplanes and I wanted to have a wide variety of jobs. Never in a million years did I think the journey would lead me to my home at the 908th and Maxwell AFB.

When I joined the 908th in July of 2004, I felt privileged and honored to be serving alongside some of the finest patriots I had ever encountered. Seven years later, after having deployed on numerous occasions to the far corners of the earth, having seen the sacrifices you have made, after watching the pride and professionalism you put into the mission, I'm humbled to not only still be a member of the wing but to have the opportunity to serve as commander of the finest C-130 unit in the world!

In between push-ups and mountain climbers; my drill instructor taught me one of my earliest military lessons, and perhaps the most important. The troops are the most important part of the organization; take care of the troops and the organization will excel. We are lucky enough to have some of the finest airmen in the world in the 908th, I learn something from them every day.

It could be SrA Green in FSS who greets every customer with a smile while going above and beyond to Chief Alexander in the Maintenance Group who promotes the accolades of his superstars to TSgt. Pettway in 357th ARMS who quietly goes about her duties in a very professional manner and doesn't shy away from taking on responsibilities way above her pay grade. It's all about taking care of the people.

When I think about the twists and turns of my unlikely journey that has led me here, I think of a quote from one of my favorite movies. In Bull Durham, the seasoned veteran, "Crash" Davis (Kevin Costner) is giving advice to rookie "Nuke" Laloosh (Tim Robins). Crash passes on the clich├ęs, "I'm just happy to be here," "Give 110 percent, 100 percent of the time," "I'm here to help the team anyway I can."

If you do these things, the good Lord really IS willing and things WILL work out.