MCENTIRE JOINT NATIONAL GUARD BASE, S.C. --
As I reflect on my service thus far as the 157th Fighter Squadron Commander, and think of the outstanding people with whom I serve, I am continually reminded of the tradition of excellence we have here at McEntire. Be it in the “jungles” of Georgia, the deployment to Osan Korea, during our Weapons School support at Nellis, or at home station, watching individuals from McEntire perform at such high levels has reminded me on occasion of our oath of office. The oaths of office for enlisted and officers are for the most part the same.
“I (Name) do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of South Carolina against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the Governor of the State of South Carolina, that I make this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of (Grade), in the Air National guard of the State of South Carolina upon which I am about to enter, so help me God.”
How does this oath play out in our organization? You have to look at the individual. The men and women at McEntire continue to raise their hand and say “I’ll do it”. Take for example the extremes of running search patterns in Georgia, being ready to “Fight Tonight” in Korea, and training at the highest levels at Nellis AFB, all the while providing hurricane relief and manning alert 24/7. The result is the same. The hands went up. In Georgia the hands went up as our organization came together, overcoming heat stress and exhaustion, and exceeding all expectations of effort. In Korea the hands went up, to include getting McEntire on the Air Tasking Order as the premier SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defense) organization, and humbly integrating our maintenance with host unit maintenance, resulting in readiness to “Fight Tonight”, exercise, and run a flying training schedule simultaneously. The hands went up at Nellis to meet the challenge during the most robust combat flying training a pilot can experience. With missions that took a day to plan, four hours to execute on day two, and a third day to debrief, the Swamp Fox learning curve was steep, our jets were on target on time, and our performance was outstanding. In addition, the hands went up at home station to man alert 24/7 as well as domestic operations in support of hurricane relief. Amazing! This is the definition of “well and faithfully discharge the duties…”. This is McEntire!
It is my honor to serve with you. Semper Primus!