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PRESIDENT'S CORNER - December 2004


Dear Fellow FTVA Members, Veterans Day 2004

Today, as we pause to reflect on the rewards and burdens of service to country, our thoughts go in more than one direction. Public events such as the ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery center our focus on the corporate, collective aspect of our service as highlighted by the Commander in Chief’s tribute to veterans. Invariably, though, for me the corporate recognition triggers recollection of more individual-related aspects—events and people--of the 29 years I was privileged to wear the uniform.

I think back to the outstanding individuals—enlisted officer and civilians—who taught me so very much about our command’s mission and how to lead and manage the talented and motivated people who made up the organization. People like Chief Pete Grozdanich, Merle Chucknick, Walt Palmer, Bill Buchholtz, Laddie Marin, Ted Naylor, Gordon Sommers, C.B Munson, Henry Pressly, Tom Gallagher, Jim Bush, Doyle Larson, Bill Ballard, Bob Sherwood and many more. What an opportunity and honor to serve with such a distinguished group! Events of thirty-plus years ago are still in sharp focus; particularly those in Vietnam that helped me decide that a military career was what I really wanted to do.

Our recent annual reunion events provided the opportunity to reconnect with the people and memories that made an Air Force career something special. The social events were great, but the highlight for me was the 24 September Remembrance Ceremony. In front of Ardisana Hall, we had the AIA Honor Guard, the Alzafar Temple Highlander Pipe Band, trumpeters from the Air Force Band of the West playing taps, and a 149th Fighter Wing F-16 missing man flyover performed within a five-minute span. The coordination was flawless, the execution superb, and the emotional impact high. Many members of AIA played the essential roles in orchestrating the week’s events, and to each of them we send a heartfelt "thank you.”

We’re in touch with AIA about next year’s anniversary celebration and will advise the FTVA membership of dates as soon as possible.


Remain in touch,


Grover Jackson

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File last updated: March 21, 2013 8:18:17 PM CDT