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AFSOC commander visits 919th SOW

Photo of Airmen looking at satellite dishes

Airmen with the 919th Special Operations Communications Squadron demonstrate communications equipment for U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, at Duke Field, Fla., Feb. 6, 2021. Members of the unit explained the strategic capabilities of specific communications equipment to Slife as part of his visit to the 919th Special Operations Wing during the February unit training assembly. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dylan Gentile)

Photo of a medical technician vaccinating Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command

U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Erich Miller, operational medicine technician for the 919th Special Operations Medical Squadron, vaccinates Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, with a COVID-19 vaccine at Duke Field, Fla., Feb. 6, 2021. Slife toured the 919th Special Operations Wing COVID-19 vaccination point of distribution with 919th SOMDS leadership during his visit to Duke Field. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dylan Gentile)

Phto of Airmen greeting each other

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, greets Master Sgt. Melissa Hill, flight chief of the 919th Special Operations Wing’s development and training flight, at Duke Field, Fla., Feb. 6, 2021. During the visit, Hill explained the strategic purpose of the flight to Slife before he spoke to a group of new recruits. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dylan Gentile)

Photo of Lt. Gen. Jim Slife briefing a room of Airmen

U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, gives a strategic guidance briefing to members of the 919th Special Operations Maintenance Group at Duke Field, Fla., Feb. 6, 2021. Slife discussed what makes AFSOC unique and how the 919th Special Operations Wing is a part of the evolving AFSOC mission. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dylan Gentile)

Photo of three Airmen saluting a vehicle

U.S. Air Force Col. Caleb Nimmo, left, vice commander of the 919th Special Operations Wing, Chief Master Sgt. Peter Webb, command chief of the 919th SOW, and Col. Kevin Merrill, commander of the 919th SOW, salute Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, upon his arrival to Haugen Headquarters, at Duke Field, Fla., on Feb. 6, 2021. Slife and his team were given a tour by 919th SOW leadership of Duke Field’s facilities during the February unit training assembly. (U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Dylan Gentile)

DUKE FIELD, Fla. -- The 919th Special Operations Wing hosted U.S. Air Force Lt. Gen. Jim Slife, commander of Air Force Special Operations Command, and Chief Master Sgt. Cory Olson, command chief of AFSOC at Duke Field, Fla., Feb. 6, 2021.

“The 919th SOW reservists are a vital part of AFSOC's future,” said Slife during his visit. “Many of the skills reservists hold are beneficial to the Air Force, and those are the assets we have access to in our formation.”

During their visit, the AFSOC leaders met with Citizen Air Commandos in small groups to discuss their special mission sets and observe the unit training assembly.

“I am really glad Lt. Gen. Slife came up to Duke Field to meet our Airmen and see how excited they are to be part of the AFSOC mission,” said U.S. Air Force Col. Kevin Merrill, commander of the 919th SOW. “We had a great visit and everyone enjoyed sharing their work and hearing more about AFSOC and how they fit into the overall mission of the command.” 

After a meeting with 919th SOW leadership, Slife briefed squadron and group commanders on the strategic AFSOC mission and priorities for the command. He continued discussions during lunch with Airmen at the dining facility.

The 919th Special Operations Medical Squadron started vaccinating members against COVID-19 during the February unit training assembly, and Slife and Olson were able to receive their vaccinations alongside 919th SOW Airmen during their tour of the vaccination line. Medical personnel with the 919th SOMDS provided vaccine information and monitored the leaders during their tour of the facility.

Slife and Olson also met with some of the newest members of the 919th SOW, trainees in the development and training flight who are waiting to leave for basic training. They not only shared some insight on how to be successful in the Air Force with the new Airmen, but also gave some insight into how they and all members of the 919th SOW fit into the future of AFSOC.

“We can see the AFSOC that we are building for the future, and it is really exciting,” said Slife during his visit with the new trainees. “This wing is going to be central to many of the things we want to do over the coming years. So it is a pretty exciting time to be where you are.”