Congratulations to Major General Mike Lutton, 20th AF Commander for being nominated for his third star. The change of command date should be announced after he is confirmed by the Senate.
Want to know more? Senate Nominations
How the U.S. Air Force Will Guard its New Sentinel ICBMs:
Air and Space Forces Magazine recently published a three-part series on the future of how Air Force security forces and missileers will guard USAF nuclear missile fields.
Part 1, Prepping for the Grey Wolf. Part 2, on the new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), and Part 3, on new infrastructure and training. All three parts are now available on the AAFM web site at the following link: https://www.afmissileers.org/In-the-News.
Part 1 Summary: The Air Force will replace its Hueys with the MH-139A Grey Wolf, which can fly faster, higher, and twice as far as the Huey. The Grey Wolf can also carry 5,000 more pounds of cargo, which should give security and maintenance forces more options when responding to a crisis. Dave Barry said, “the badness of an action movie is directly proportional to the number of helicopters in the movie”…the new Grey Wolf is ready for its role as the “baddest” platform in the ICBM fields! Want to know more? Do More and Do it Longer
Part 2 Summary: ICBM Security Forces are already using the new Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) at the Mighty Ninety. The JLTV is billed as better in rough terrain, and better protected than the Humvee. It is also smarter, with computers in the dashboard that help Airmen keep track of their fellow defenders and build situational awareness. To see a Motor Trend comparison of the Humvee vs. the JLTV click on this link: Fast, Furious and Deadly
Part 3 Summary: Col. Deane Konowicz, Vice Commander of the 20th Air Force, said, “The challenges don’t go away, they change, so we need a trained and efficient force that understands them.” A new facility may make it easier to strike that balance. F.E. Warren will build an integrated complete with a mock launch facility where maintainers, defenders, cybersecurity specialists, and operators can practice running and securing Sentinel without stepping on the toes of an operational facility. Want to know more? Infrastructure and Training
Eating Good in the Nuclear Neighborhood
Other than defending the US, alert duty brings together groups of different Airmen for a single purpose…eating! No matter the weapon system, alert food is key to keeping morale high and missiles alert ready. Also, it’s hard to sneak up on an aggressor when your stomach is growling. In 2003 AAFM had a good series on food and missileers. You can read it at https://www.afmissileers.org/Food
The Tactical Pizza story prompted us to ask for some unique dining experiences from our members. We started with Titan and the response was amazing. Future emails will include other weapon systems. Names were omitted to protect the innocent…read on nuclear warriors:
- We had a kitchen at our site in AZ. We would catch Rattlesnakes during DSV. We used Shake-N-Bake for the coating!
- Anyone familiar with a Titan 2 air supply knows air comes from the control center, down the short cableway, through the blast lock and finally down the long cableway - exactly where we were working! All of a sudden came the smell of cooking bacon, eggs, toast, and hot coffee. The crew was going to feast on bacon and eggs. We were tired, dirty, facing a 1 1/2-hour drive to DM and mostly we were hungry too. Then the insult. Over the PA, the crew commander announces, "ALL PTS CREW MEMBERS REPORT IMMEDIATELY TO THE CONTROL CENTER." Great, tired, dirty, facing a long drive while hungry, and we're about to get chewed out. NOPE. That breakfast had been for us, the PTS crew. We were to ravage all that food along with the 4-man combat crew for what was heaven, had been laid out before us.
- Down in the Access Portal in the Titan II complexes, just outside of Blast Door #6, there was a small exhaust fan that was manually operated. When I got more money with promotions, I would take out a Hibachi grill and charcoal and cook steaks and burgers topside. When the weather got bad or cold, I put the grill next to the fan, close door 6 and grill in the access portal.
- I was on T2. Usually leftover from home, apple fritters from the Mad Butcher or other donuts. I always carried a chicken chow mein canned meal for getting snowed in.
- The best meal I ever had while working PTS at Little Rock was box lunches from the chow hall. It was also the worst because in my almost three years in PTS it was the only meal w had at the sits.
- I was Titan II PTS for nearly 16 years. During deactivation at McConnell our RFHCO trailers were equipped with a refrigerator and microwave. We all carried our small coolers out and we all had our favorite recipes. Mine was a "Gourmet" smothered frozen burrito on a paper plate. A couple of frozen burritos were smothered in a can of Wolfe Chili (with or without beans) and topped with a can of Fritos Cheese dip!!! Thankfully I was the PTS Task Supervisor and didn't get in RFHCO often as the farts were well...bad!!!
- Level 1 of our three-level control center in Titan II had a kitchen. We had to take out our own food. For lunch and dinner it was whatever a broke, young, Airman could afford. I ate a lot of Geno's Pizza Rolls for lunch and ham and cheese sandwiches from buying ingredients at the Commissary. Also, I ate a lot of salads as it was five heads for a buck (mid to late 70s). Had to stretch $90/month as far as it could go. The first crew I was on was great and the four of us would bring the different ingredients and the MFT and I would make breakfast while the two officers stayed on Level 2 and tidy up before we got relieved.
- For some strange reason, when I was at McConnell, our crew vehicle always malfunctioned when we came close to a grocery store.
- We dropped mandatory foil packs while I was there, and we in the 390th SMW didn't look back! As far as cooking, we would stop at a 7-11 for the non-cooks, or like me I'd stop at a grocery store on the way to alert and pick up anything from sandwiches to a steak, potatoes, and some fruit, maybe some eggs for breakfast. We had the kitchen on level 1 which was better than the kitchen in my apartment I rented off base. It was known that sometimes we would even BBQ topside. That was a weekend project. One MCCC I had fixed chicken teriyaki with all the fixens. We ate good on crew!!
- Titan II in Little Rock DOV crew. MFT would bring his own omelet pans. We had Omelets, a pound of bacon, tatter tots, and toast. Every alert, the best meals in my career.
- I was Titan II -- DIY food. To this day I avoid microwave pizza because I ate it on alert so much (pizza remains my favorite food grouping I just won't get a pizza designed for the microwave). But I had an awesome MFT who loved to fish. He brought out the filets and cooked them up in corn meal. We had all you can eat fish dinner -- I am guessing it was a Sunday alert.
- When I first got on crew in 1969, we had foil pack meals, not much choice of what food we got, we brought it to the site in big coolers. Normally we had fresh eggs for breakfast. We usually made a stop on the way to the site at a 7/11 to pick up snacks and junk food. On level 2, where the control center was, we had a hot plate for the coffee pot and the crew ate their meals there. The maintenance guys had to bring their own food to the site, and they would eat in the kitchen on level 1. As time went on, they gave us more choices and the food improved some.
- ELab team 81-85 on long test days we all would bring out food for the team. Anything from chili to lasagna to pasta dishes. Sure was good to eat good food and not junk food on shorter maintenance days.
- I remember the running joke at McConnell was the Titan 2 course meal - a large bag of Ruffles a 2-litre bottle of Pepsi. I too ate a lot of pizza rolls and tv dinners. In addition, carried a can of beef stew if we were snowed in
- Had a Greek chef on our crew in KS so we stopped at a grocery store on the way out.
Help the Red Dawgs:
The 12th Missile Squadron "Red Dawgs" at Malmstrom AFB is revamping its hallway in the administrative building. We plan to include a chronological timeline of its history and display retired missileer uniforms and various memorabilia. Please consider donating old uniforms, patches, or any pertinent information, and your name and legacy will live on while hanging on the Red Dawgs’ walls, indefinitely. We're specifically looking for the CMU-3/P "white overalls" worn from 1963 to ~1968, two piece "crew blues" worn from ~1968 to 1988, and blue flight suit worn from 1988 to 2004. If anyone is willing to donate these or other items, the ”Red Dawgs” would be sincerely grateful for your assistance in preserving its heritage! Contact Information: 2LT Nora Dachota Email: Nora.Dachota.email@example.com / Civ Email: Norkat12@gmail.com
Looking for some history on our nuclear history? Check out the new movie Oppenheimer. While AAFM can’t attest to its accuracy we thought we would share this picture from the real event: J. Robert Oppenheimer (left) and Gen. Leslie R. Groves examining the remains of a steel tower at the Trinity test site in Alamogordo, New Mexico, September 1945.(note the AF tan uniform!)
New AAFM Store Items:
Check out the new logo items in our AAFM store including our new full or subdues patches and our new ICBM history t-shirt that shows the timeline of ICBMs from Atlas to Sentinel. Available in the blue shown below or a special order olive drab dry wick that meets uniform requirements.
James F. Warner