Columbus AFB honors retirees during appreciation day

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Jake Jacobsen
  • 14th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

Members of Team BLAZE and the Columbus, Mississippi, came together Nov. 14 during the base’s Retiree Appreciation Day to focus on military retirees in the local area and show them some gratitude.

At the event Col. David Fazenbaker, 14th Flying Training Wing vice commander, welcomed, celebrated and connected with retiree’s, thanking them for all that they have done.

“For all of us currently serving, we stand on the shoulders of giants of those who have come before us—and you are those people,” says Fazenbaker.

Fazenbaker continued, “Retiree Appreciation Day is about connecting and cultivating relationships so we can best support your needs as well as cultivating strong lasting relationships between you, our Airmen and retirees still serving.”

The day was a way for the 14th Flying Training Wing to recognize its retiree population and give them a chance to learn about the base and its mission, and provide information and updates about their benefits and care.

“A lot of our retiree population might not have social media or current technology at their fingertips,” said Tech. Sgt. Stashia Murphy, 14th Force Support Squadron’s Military Personnel Flight superintendent. “So, this event is a one stop shop for resources to get educated and up to date with all the changes in benefits and entitlements.”

Retirees were also offered the opportunity to go on a base tour, which included a military working dog demonstration along with static displays of the 14th FTW’s aircraft. When the tour arrived at the static displays the group was met by T-38 Talon and T-6 Texan II instructor pilots, who talked about the aircraft and helped answer questions.

During the MWD portion of the tour handlers shared the everyday life of a MWD as well as the deployed life. The handlers were able to demonstrate how the MWDs accomplish the Air Force mission by serving in a variety of roles such as tracking, search and rescue or bomb detection.

After the tour, retirees were then treated to a free lunch at the Club on Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi. They were then given an opportunity to get their flu shot, browse some booths that included information on medical benefits, an opportunity to talk with key leaders on base.

“Although you may no longer wear the uniform you are still a part of our Air Force Team BLAZE family,” Fazenbaker said. “We truly appreciate you and your service to our nation’s call and it is our honor to continue supporting you and serving you. Thank you for all you have done for our country.”