President Biden arrives at Maxwell AFB, visits weapons system manufacturer

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Rhonda Smith
  • Air University Public Affairs

President Joe Biden visited a Lockheed Martin Facility that manufactures anti-tank missiles in Troy, Alabama, May 3, leveraging Maxwell Air Force Base for arrival and departure.

The 42nd Air Base Wing played a leading role delivering seamless, world-class installation support for Biden’s first visit to Alabama since being elected.

Upon arrival, Biden was greeted by Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed, Lt. Gen. James Hecker, Air University commander and president, and Col. Eries Mentzer, Maxwell AFB commander.

The Biden Administration has authorized additional security assistance to support Ukraine, to include Javelin anti-tank missiles manufactured in Troy, Alabama.

The base partnered with White House and key advance teams to prepare for Biden’s visit, including supporting Marine One, the helicopters responsible for transporting the president. In appreciation for the support, twelve exemplar Maxwell AFB and Gunter Annex Airmen received incentive flights on MV-22B Ospreys in preparation for the visit.

“The partner interaction on events like this is amazing,” said Lt. Col. Christopher Troutman, 42nd Communications Squadron commander and the 42nd Air Base Wing lead for the visit. “The integration with advance teams and local community partners was outstanding and provided Team Maxwell an incredible opportunity to showcase the base while supporting our Commander-in-Chief. We learned a great deal, developed great professional connections, and can now apply this experience to our daily missions.”

Prior to departure, Biden recognized five outstanding Airmen from Maxwell Air Force Base and Gunter Annex and thanked them for their service:
1st Lt. Radrequia Finley, 187th Fighter Wing executive officer
Tech. Sgt. Frantz Jean-Baptiste, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center maintenance information systems database manager
Staff Sgt. Janie Murray, 357th Airlift Squadron flight engineer and 908th Airlift Wing Development and Training flight chief
Senior Airman Adien Lundquist, 42nd Comptroller Squadron financial technician
Senior Airman Jackson Manske, Air University Public Affairs

“Team Maxwell was honored to host President Biden, Congresswoman Terri Sewell, Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks, and Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Christopher Grady in support of their Alabama visit,” said Col, Eries Mentzer, 42nd ABW commander. “We are grateful for the opportunity to highlight Team Maxwell-Gunter Total Force Airmen and the incredible City of Montgomery and River Region community partnerships that enable the United States Air Force and United States Space Force accession and advanced education missions at Air University.”

In commemoration of his visit, Biden received a replica of the Maxwell Air Force Base Rosa Parks “Opening Eyes” sculpture by Ian Mangum showcasing the exceptional base-community partnership that have changed Maxwell AFB, the City of Montgomery, and the nation for the better.