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President´s Corner - June 2009

June 2009

Dear FTVA Members,

It's early June and plans for the USAFSS 61st anniversary and annual FTVA reunion (24-26 September) are well underway.  Forty-five years ago, in 1964, USAFSS adopted the motto "Freedom Through Vigilance" and twenty-seven years ago Major General Doyle Larson, with the help of Colonel Bill Ballard and a hand-full of others, organized the FTVA.  USAFSS and FTVA have changed over the years.  During the post WWII era, and well into the Cold War, USAFSS had personnel assigned at forward-based locations around the world.  Over the last sixty-one years, USAFSS and now AF ISR Agency personnel have transitioned from being forward-based, to what is now largely a rear-based remotely linked operation, mixed with frequently recurring deployments under the Air Expeditionary Force (AEF) concept.  Like USAFSS, the AF ISR Agency is in the fight every day - whether CONUS-based or out-front in some remote location.  Personnel are deployed based on Combatant Commander requirements.  During the Spring Social at the Kelly Annex Officer's Club, FTVA honored several AF ISR Agency personnel who recently returned from deployments in support of the Global War on Terrorism.  Their stories and their commitment to duty were remarkable.  We are truly blessed by their service.  MGen Bradley Heithold, the newly assigned AF ISR Agency Commander was our guest speaker.  His presentation was both interesting and entertaining.  We were all glad to get to know him and his lovely wife, Maggie.  In addition, we were joined by one of the two AF ISR Agency Ambassadors - individuals who represent the agency in public, at various activities around the community.   It was our treat to host them and several other active duty members of the AF ISR senior staff.

Almost two years old now, the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Agency, has continued to grow, mature and stay very busy.  Since last year, they have expanded the breadth of their responsibility and organization.  Their ranks have swollen to over 14,900 personnel serving at 72 locations worldwide and their contribution to the Global War on Terrorism continues to grow in importance.  The Commander's Agency update during the upcoming reunion should prove very interesting and informative.

Reunion week information is included with this quarterly news letter.  Nominations for the Hall of Honor have been requested and are due this month.  This is a very important program that deserves your attention and input.  Please contact CMSgt (Ret) Bob Sherwood with your nominations.  MGen Bradley Heithold, Commander, AF ISR Agency has been invited to be our guest speaker at the Anniversary Banquet.  The banquet will be held at the Lackland AFB Gateway Club.  The golf tournament will be held at the Alsatian Golf Club in Castroville, a few miles west of San Antonio.  I hope to see you all during the reunion celebrating the 61st Anniversary of USAFFS, the new Air Force ISR Agency, and honoring those members who have given their lives in the defense of our country.  Please spread the word to all members and associates. 

Finally I need to call your attention to the new security requirements on Lackland AFB and throughout DoD.  Active duty and/or retired ID cards will still get you on base - but without one, you need to be on our entry list which will be provided to the LAFB Security Forces in advance of your arrival.   Please note (and comply with) the procedures outlined in this mailing and posted on our FTVA website.   We'll need your help to ensure a smooth visit in September.

Until then, please remain in touch.


Chris Cook                    


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Freedom Through Vigilance Association
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San Antonio, TX 78269-1616

File last updated: March 21, 2013 8:18:11 PM CDT