Air Force secretary lauds F.E. Warren Airmen during holiday visit

  • Published
  • By Capt. Mary Danner-Jones
  • 90th Missile Wing public affairs
Secretary of the Air Force Michael Donley visited with Warren Airmen here Dec. 23 to recognize Air Force Global Strike Command Airmen who carry out the nuclear deterrence mission.

"We have missile crews and Airmen standing alert over the holidays, and we want them to know their leaders appreciate the sacrifices they make," Secretary Donley said.

"We appreciate our Airmen and their families for the support they provide every day of the year, but especially during the holiday period when some of our Airmen can't be with their families," he said.

Capt. Mike Ralph, a 319th Missile Squadron flight commander, was one of those on hand to meet the secretary.

"A visit such as this shows how much our senior leadership cares about the nuclear mission and our Airmen here. It means a lot that Secretary Donley took time out of his busy schedule to come here."

During his visit, the secretary met with 20th Air Force and 90th Missile Wing maintainers, operators, security forces, support personnel and leaders to express his appreciation for the dedication and professionalism of everyone who supports the mission here.

He said the great performance of the 90th Missile Wing during the first-ever Global Strike Challenge in November was reflective of Warren's training, precision, dedication and professionalism.

"This was a major accomplishment for the Mighty Ninety," he said. "Awards in several different areas really indicate you have some stand-out units and performers here."

Those honors included the Blanchard Trophy recognizing the best ICBM wing, as well as three other top Global Strike Challenge awards.

Secretary Donley said the work performed by Warren professionals is "critical" and "truly remarkable," adding that the mission across the nuclear enterprise is nonstop.

Acknowledging the Air Force's 50-plus years of nuclear heritage, he added that nuclear deterrence remains the backbone not only of the Air Force, but also of national military capabilities.