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News > 14th OSS Key Spouse garners AETC award
14th OSS Key Spouse garners AETC award
Gen. Edward Rice, AETC commander, presents Perla Hopkins with the Key Spouse of the Year Award for the MAJCOM. Also pictured are: Mrs. Hopkins husband, Capt. Bart Hopkins, 14th OSS Weather Flight, and Lt. Col. Alex Walford, 14th OSS commander.
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14th OSS Key Spouse garners AETC award

Posted 1/28/2011   Updated 1/28/2011 Email story   Print story


by Lt. Col. Alex Walford
14th Operations Support Squadron commander

1/28/2011 - COLUMBUS AIR FORCE BASE, Miss. -- A Key Spouse for the 14th Operations Support Squadron was recognized last week by Air Education and Training Command Commander Gen. Edward Rice as the MAJCOM's Key Spouse of the Year for 2010.

Perla Hopkins, spouse of 14th OSS Weather Flight's Capt. Bart Hopkins, was recognized in San Antonio, Texas at the AETC Symposium as the AETC Key Spouse of the Year.

Mrs. Hopkins, a current squadron Key Spouse volunteer, was extensively involved in unit activities and was a staunch supporter for OSS families enabling the unit's ability to support the mission.

"I am extremely honored and humbled to be recognized for this award," said Mrs. Hopkins. "I accept this not only for myself, but all the 14th OSS Key Spouses."

Mrs. Hopkins exemplified the pillars of the key spouse program through active engagement. She organized support efforts for a deployed Airman distraught from a death in the family, advocated base resources for a married couple experiencing difficulties and personally cared for an OSS team member experiencing life threatening medical complications. Additionally, she assisted a schoolteacher spouse of a deployed member by teaching Spanish to 3rd-graders every week for five months--while at the same time completing her second Masters degree in Spanish.

Furthermore, Mrs. Hopkins provided unparalleled support to our deployed member spouses by delivering continuous information concerning local activities, events, marriage enhancement seminars and launched care package campaigns for 12 deployed Airmen. She also maintained a deployed Airman's home, enabling the member's spouse and new baby to reside with family members for the duration of the deployment.

"I believe in giving back to the Air Force family," Mrs. Hopkins explains "Over the past 14 years, the Air Force family has been there for us."

Aside from base involvement, Mrs. Hopkins is also a pillar to the community. She selflessly cared for families in need through children's clothes drives and Habitat for Humanity service and volunteered for base/community beautification projects and pilgrimage.

Mrs. Hopkins champions the 'one team' sentiment by advocating for family resources and soliciting base support agencies. Her sincere passion and genuine desire to care for our military families gives comfort to service members who must focus on the mission--often times many miles from home. I am proud of all of our key spouses.

"Family First...Mission Always."

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