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Dec. 13, 2012

The Journey back to normal

Between August 2009 and March 2010, I lost myself during my deployment to Afghanistan. I remember coming off the airplane, seeing my family and knowing that my world would never be the same again. It took me more than a year to put my life back together. My family and coworkers greeted me coming out of the secure area of the airport. As I went to

Dec. 6, 2012

A dream cut short

As I stood, sweating outside the Military Enlistment Processing Station on a hot June 24, 2010, I knew I had made a very important and life changing decision; the decision to join the United States Air Force. I joined the Air Force to attend school, travel, and grow as an individual. I left for Basic Military Training on the cold winter morning of

Nov. 27, 2012

How Airman Snuffy changed my view on standards

As I move through what are most likely the last few years of my U.S. Air Force career, my mentality began changing.Those things which we hold dear, like proper wear of the uniform, high-and-tight haircuts and standing when a commissioned officer addresses us seem less important. Not that I don't still do those things, but they somehow haven't

Nov. 26, 2012

SIPR Tokens: "The Fast and the Furious"

The secure internet, or SIPRNet, has become a key element to many of the missions carried out on Joint Base Langley Eustis. Anyone who uses SIPRNet is familiar with its rigid password standards.Beginning December 2012, Air force policy has mandated the implementation of a new SIPRNet token. SIPR users will be relieved of the burden of having to

Nov. 20, 2012

Our story is generational

The crisscross pattern of olive green fabric felt rough against my fingers as I held my father's old U.S. Air Force uniform. It was a different time in September 1973 when Airman 1st Class Tom Denton arrived at Langley Air Force Base, Va. to start his career as a weapons control systems technician on the F-106 Delta Dart. Now, nearly 40 years

Nov. 13, 2012

Thankfulness and an oak tree

What are you thankful for? The question followed me the entire, extended weekend, as I struggled to write this article. It followed me as I made my way through the historic sites of Virginia. The air was unseasonably warm for November, as I walked through the remnants of Jamestown, Va. - America's first permanent English colony. The ground crunched

Nov. 9, 2012

Strong leadership today may save lives tomorrow

Leadership and the military are inseparable.I've often heard a peacetime military can be sustained by strong managers, but great leaders are needed on the fields, skies and seas of war. Some volatile situations have taught me that, in fact, leadership and discipline are just as important in peace and training, as they are in war. With research, I'm

Nov. 2, 2012

Learning to cope when suicide hits at home

The last day of school of my freshman year in high school, I woke up to the phone ringing. It was very early and I heard my mom's voice talking to the person on the other end."No, he's not here. He should be there already. I'll go check the roads and see if his car broke down and get back with you. Thank you," she said.She then came back to my room

Oct. 25, 2012

Customs and courtesies still apply in electronic communication

Modern communication is quick and convenient, and has dramatically altered the way the Air Force fights. Air Force information systems provide each Airman with direct and immediate access to the world. While information systems such as email, web pages, electronic transfer points and data links vitally enhance productivity by providing massive

Oct. 18, 2012

Every Airman has the potential to be an innovator

I was one of the lucky few who attended the Air Force Association's 2012 Air and Space Conference and Technology Exposition in Washington, DC last recently. Something that U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh said during his speech resonated with me. "Innovation is what we're all about," he said. "We always have been." I agree with this

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