HomeNewsArticle Display

Big Brothers Big Sisters visits 3rd Operations Group

Keegan Hall, 12, breathes through an oxygen mask, Oct. 29, 2010, in the F-22 Raptor egress procedure trainer at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson with the help of Tech. Sgt. Chelsea De La Fuente. Sergeant DeLa Fuente is with the Aircrew Flight Equipment Flight, 3rd Operations Support Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

Keegan Hall, 12, breathes through an oxygen mask, Oct. 29, 2010, in the F-22 Raptor egress procedure trainer at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson with the help of Tech. Sgt. Chelsea De La Fuente. Sergeant DeLa Fuente is with the Aircrew Flight Equipment Flight, 3rd Operations Support Squadron. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

Airmen with the 3rd Operations Group help Alex Metzger-Jacobs, 10, with an F-22 Raptor egress procedure trainer Oct. 29, 2010, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Alex enjoyed a tour of several 3rd Operations Group units with Big Brother Big Sisters members. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

Airmen with the 3rd Operations Group help Alex Metzger-Jacobs, 10, with an F-22 Raptor egress procedure trainer Oct. 29, 2010, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Alex enjoyed a tour of several 3rd Operations Group units with Big Brother Big Sisters members. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

Keegan Hall, 12, descends in a parachute trainer Oct. 29, 2010, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Keegan enjoyed a tour of several 3rd Operations Group units with Big Brother Big Sisters members. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

Keegan Hall, 12, descends in a parachute trainer Oct. 29, 2010, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Keegan enjoyed a tour of several 3rd Operations Group units with Big Brother Big Sisters members. (U.S. Air Force photo/David Bedard)

JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska (AFNS) -- As he dangled from parachute risers, 12-year old Keegan Hall looked down at a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier sailing in the Pacific. Deftly controlling his parachute's toggles, Keegan successfully maneuvered into a stand-up landing on the ship's pitching deck.

Peering through virtual reality glasses, Keegan experienced what it would be like to eject from a fighter jet above an aircraft carrier group.
Keegan had donned a parachute harness and was strapped in by Aircrew Flight Equipment Flight, 3rd Operations Support Squadron Airman, while visiting 3rd Operations Group, 3rd Wing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Oct. 29, with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Lt. Col. Greg Miller, the 3rd OG deputy commander, said the activity was part of BBBS' tour of several units of the group that included an F-22 Raptor static display, the C-17 Globemaster III flight simulator, the F-22 egress procedure trainer and some firsthand experience with Air Force survival equipment, including night vision goggles.

Colonel Miller said Col. William Routt, the 3rd OG commander and military liaison to the BBBS leadership council, organized the event with BBBS Director of Development Kelli Phifer.

"(They) decided it would be a good opportunity to give back to the community, because the community here supports the military so well," Colonel Miller said. "It's a nice way to show the community what we do on a day-to-day basis. It gives them a little bit of appreciation for what goes on here at the base, and it gives the kids a good time."

Colonel Miller said 3rd OG Airmen relished the opportunity to work with BBBS youth.

"It's a nice break from the in and out day-to-day work," he explained. "Second, I think it's a nice way for them to give back to the community, and let them know the community sees what they're doing and knows they're part of the big picture of what goes on here."

Ms. Phifer said BBBS matches youth from the ages of 6 through 18 with a caring adult mentor or with a mentor couple. The program has made more than 1,500 matches across the state.

"We like to say that we help kids stay on the right path," Ms. Phifer said. "Kids need someone to talk to, and it's a great thing to have their 'big,' who is someone who doesn't have to be there.

"They're not a parent," Ms. Phifer said. "They're not a teacher; they're not someone who is being paid to spend time with them like a tutor. This is an adult who chooses to spend time with the child, and that tells something to a kid."

Phifer said BBBS youth may open up to their mentors in ways they may feel reluctant to with their parents.
Despite this dynamic, mentors are not a stand in for parents, but rather a supplement, she said.

"We're not a replacement, at all, for parents," she said. "We're there to help walk kids through and be a friend -- do what friends do."

Would-be mentors submit to a background check before qualifying for the program. Mentors, parents and children are interviewed to make a match on common preferences and personality traits.

With nearly 70 children currently looking for a mentor match, Ms. Phifer said opportunities are ripe to volunteer with BBBS.

"What we really want are long-lasting relationships and friendships," Ms. Phifer said. "And just like any other relationship, you have to have some sort of commonality. So, we take great care in matching our 'bigs' and 'littles' and then supporting those relationships is really the key to making them long and successful."

Engage

Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Rahn - thank you for being my wingman, battle buddy & best friend for these past 24 years. I’m a better me because of y…
Twitter
Back in action! A fleet of hail-damaged T-1A Jayhawk trainers are now back in the air thanks to a unique repair an… https://t.co/WyXlryDDYx
Twitter
Overwhelming #AirPower Check out @MitchellStudies podcast highlighting the aerospace advantage that helped ensure… https://t.co/4r0tZTw2XN
Twitter
A historic strategic air campaign, supported by the employment of revolutionary technology by Total Force Airmen an… https://t.co/mepQdN9rvt
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Great dialogue as well today with @IAFsite commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin. Israel’s strategic importance in the Middle…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: The proven ability to employ air & space capabilities to achieve swift effects, as demonstrated during Operation Desert S…
Twitter
AFWERX helps make the Air Force work! @AFWERX is the #AirForce’s team of innovators that helps facilitate connecti… https://t.co/8ZxAaAEbNG
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: Deadline extended! 🗓️ @usairforce housing residents now have until Feb. 5 to provide feedback. Don't miss your chance to be…
Twitter
RT @MDNG: .@175thWing members are supporting #COVID19 vaccination efforts at Maryland State Fairgrounds! The @MDNG has been activated to m…
Twitter
Fighting cyber crimes. #ICYMI: @SecAFOfficial declared @DC3Forensics a Field Operating Agency. Learn more at… https://t.co/jmFr4aCTva
Twitter
RT @SecDef: Our Armed Forces are at their best when they represent the talents of our entire population, regardless of gender identity. I f…
Twitter
Out w/the old, in w/the new “This allows Robins to efficiently perform the depot maintenance, getting the airplane… https://t.co/92QwJVAfBr
Twitter
B-1 + B-2 + B-52 = Super Bowl 55 Flyover! The @Chiefs and @Buccaneers punched in their tickets to #SuperBowlLV l… https://t.co/9BbZ8rdN7f
Twitter
RT @washingtonpost: Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. joins The Post to discuss what it means to be the first Black chief…
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Acting Secretary Roth’s message to #Airmen and #Guardians: “Our commitment to our duty remains steadfast: to support and…
Twitter
RT @NORADCommand: As competitors seek to bolster their presence and mil ops in the Arctic, NORAD support services such as @RCAF_ARC, @USAir
Twitter
Reunited “We haven’t been in the same room, car or space with each other for longer than one to three days in the… https://t.co/dyqzATb033
Twitter
Preserving the training pipeline! Aircrews from the 314th Airlift Wing flew approximately 20 Survival, Evasion, Re… https://t.co/dUV0YtfErk
Twitter
Delivering the vaccine The @UTNationalGuard expanded its support against #COVID19 to provide vaccinations & monocl… https://t.co/CeeGFKC9xK
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,313,299
Follow Us