An MQ-9 Reaper sits on the flight line at Hurlburt Field, Fla., May 3, 2014.The MQ-9 Reaper is an armed, multi-mission, medium-altitude, long-endurance remotely piloted aircraft that is employed primarily as an intelligence-collection asset and secondarily against dynamic execution targets. (U.S. Air Force photo illustration/Staff Sgt. John Bainter)


Commander shares Memorial Day message

  • Published
  • By Col. Les Bradfield, 919th Special Operations Wing commander

As we enter into the Memorial Day weekend, I’d like to reflect on this day of remembrance for our fellow Americans who have fallen fighting for our nation. On Memorial Day, Americans will pause to honor the more than one million Soldiers, Marines, Sailors, Airmen and Coastguardsmen who gave their lives to secure our freedoms and way of life.


American flags will be lowered to half staff in town squares, on military bases, private homes and government facilities as an everlasting tribute to those who gave their all defending our nation’s interests.


At noon on Memorial Day, flags will once again be raised to full staff as a symbol of the resilience of America and those who serve her at home and in austere and distant points around the globe.


Each of you have played an important role in meeting the operational demands of a nation at war for the past 17 years. For many, this pace has encompassed most, if not all, of your careers and taken a toll on you and your families. Please know your efforts and sacrifices are recognized and greatly appreciated.


This level of commitment and service to the nation does not come without a cost. You are truly more important than hardware!  If you or anyone you know is having difficulty maintaining balance or dealing with stress, please speak with a Wingman, a supervisor or someone you trust.


Your Air Force family is here for you and your families. We also have a wide range of tools and resources available to enhance your resiliency. Take time to communicate with those around you and be cognizant of the signs when others might need help.


Throughout this day of remembrance, we will all once again affirm our commitment to the survivors of our fallen as well as our wounded warriors and their families. We are grateful for your service and privileged to stand by you and for you.