Civil Engineers' Work in Guam Draws to a Close
By Airman 1st Class Madeleine Richards, 146AW
/ Published February 12, 2015
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam -- Another great work week and we are ready to head back to the golden state! I know lots of members have been missing their loved ones. I can't wait to get home and be greeted by the best smile in the world, from my dog. I definitely miss my dog. There was a lot to achieve this week and I witnessed many people stepping up to get it done.
Senior Airman Ing Osman, an Engineering Assistant from the 146th Airlift Wing was able to get a lot of on-the-job training. On this TDY she volunteered to travel with the Civil Engineering Squadron and work wherever help was needed. Every time I saw her she was helping with something. This Airman's work ethic is off the charts. Staff Sgt. Xavier Martinez-Soto from the 146th Civil Engineering Heavy Equipment Operators heard that the 554th Red Horse Squadron was going to be surveying some land for his crew to fill up which falls under an Engineering Assistant AFSC. Soto reached out to Osman and got her working with the Red Horse Squadron to survey land. It was a great opportunity for Osman to be able to work with the skills she was trained to do!
Traveling with Civil Engineering working with supplies on this TDY is Senior Airman Bestaida Martinez. She actually works under Emergency Management at the 146th Airlift Wing. Senior Master Sgt. Ruel Gadbury, who oversees Heating Air Condition Ventilation /Refrigeration, coordinated with the Emergency Management team at Andersen Air Force Base. He found out that the Andersen Air Force Base Civil Engineering Squadron Emergency Management was conducting an exercise and arranged for Martinez and himself to participate. Martinez who is a very petite woman, suited up in full a Level A suit for chemical hazardous material incidents even though the only size available was a large! She was a trooper about it all and proceeded with the exercise. It was great to see our members learning new skills on this trip by working outside their AFSC, but also gaining knowledge about their usual job to take back home.
"I loved it! It was great experience to get dressed up in a level A suit," Martinez said. " I always jump at the opportunity to work with active duty and to enhance my knowledge in my career field."
As we make our departure a new group is heading out here to Guam to take over the project where we left off. The 126th CES will be arriving on the 11th, two days before we head back home. A conference call was held on Monday morning of this week between the leadership of the 146th Airlift Wing Civil Engineering Squadron and the 126th CES commander, Lt. Col. Marc Eccher, and the supervisors to update the new crew and let them know what to expect. Tech. Sgt. Martin Denny from the 146th AW who is the project manager explained everything that we have done so far on the simulator building and other projects. The layout for electrical is finished, structure walls are set in place, fire suppression trunk lines are in, HVAC has completed the west side of the building and an updated layout of what else needs to be done is ready for them to look at.
"The first few days were pretty rough but it has smoothed out quiet a bit, once we obtained all the materials and proceeded with an updated game plan," Denny explained.
On Wednesday, the second to last day before our departure from Guam, leadership organized a barbeque as a thank you to treat to all of the members for their hard work. It was a nice location at Tarague beach on Andersen Air Force Base. Services arrived early to start grilling, and I'm not exaggerating when I say it was one of the best meals I've eaten. There was beach volleyball, tossing a football, good food, and a great way for the members to relax. They held a small recognition awards ceremony before eating as a chance for leadership to say a few words and coin a couple Airmen in particular who stood out for their dedication on this trip. They also thanked the Red Horse Squadron for being such good hosts to us.
Lt. Col. Andrew DeRosa, Commander of the 554th Red Horse Squadron, spoke at the barbeque and shared his thanks for a job well done. "I am humbled that we have a total force effort, active duty, guard, reserve, in the construction project," DeRosa said. "To finally walk into that building and see the progress is amazing. My hat's off to you, you have my deepest appreciation."
"We completed the mission safely without injury, and even used our civilian skills in conjunction with the AFSC competencies to complete the mission," said Maj. Allyson Benko who was the officer in charge on this mission.
With one more half day of work before members start packing up to leave at 0300, this TDY is coming to an end. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to travel with such a hard working group of people. It makes me proud to be a part of the World's Greatest Air Force when I see excellence working all around me. Now as for this 18 total hours of flying back to California, I may just look at it as a chance for me to guilt-free binge watch my favorite TV shows.