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SCANG celebrates "Family Day"

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Ashleigh Pavelek
  • 169th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
During May's training weekend, the roars of nearby  F-16 Fighting Falcons engines were replaced by live music, children's laughter and the occasional sound of a revving race car engine on display nearby.

Airmen from the South Carolina Air National Guard took a pause from training to celebrate family during the 2015 Family Day, held May 2.

"Family Day lets us take time out to show all of our Airmen and their families that we appreciate the hard work they do and the time away from homes and jobs our Airmen, as well as their families, sacrifice," said Lt. Col. Allen Stewart, assigned to the 169th Mission Support Group.

Some of the more popular static displays included an F-16 Fighting Falcon, a P-51 Mustang World War II vintage aircraft and a Bradley Fighting vehicle, which gave everyone something fun to see up close. Children played on the bouncy houses, defeated the obstacle wall and tested their strength on the velcro wall.  Many of the children had their faces painted as well. 

"It feels good to show them what we do," said Airman 1st Class Warren Gallman, a crew chief assigned to the 169th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron.  "I am thankful for McEntire for this opportunity for my family to get a chance to see something they wouldn't normally see."

Sponsors prepared more than 1,800 meals for Swamp Fox Airmen and their families to enjoy. The Richland County Sherriff's Department supported the event with a "Kids Print" fingerprinting demonstration and their D.A.R.E vehicle display.

"My family loves it, and they want to come see McEntire and what I do here," said Staff Sgt. Jason Willoughby, an intelligence analyst assigned to the 169th Operations Support Squadron. 

Various family support programs supported the event and included the Chaplain's office, Yellow Ribbon, the S.C. National Guard Association and the Fort Jackson Commissary, providing information and a wide variety of snacks for Airmen and their families. Family Day at McEntire was a day of family, fun and fellowship for all associated with the base.

"Guardsmen live and work in the community," said Stewart.  "When your local neighbors, friends and employees are involved in the defense of the nation, there is more support from the community.  Family day is a culmination of the community supporting their neighbors, friends and employees."