October Commander's Corner

Col Michael Hudson, Commander of the 169th Fighter Wing, McEntire JNGB, S.C., poses for his official portrait on August 29, 2011. (Photo taken while Vice Commander, as of 7 January Col. Hudson is 169th FW Commander)
(SCANG photo by TSgt Caycee Cook)

Col. Michael Hudson, Commander of the 169th Fighter Wing, McEntire JNGB, S.C., Aug. 29, 2011. (National Guard Photo by Tech. Sgt. Caycee Watson / Released)

MCENTIRE JOINT NATIONAL GUARD BASE, South Carolina --      Any attempt to capture, in words, the magnitude of this wing's accomplishments over the past several months would almost surely fail.

     I am awe struck by your determination, your professionalism, your courage and the extent to which you are willing to endure personal sacrifice for the sake of our mission. In fact, I am humbled to serve alongside the hundreds of patriots and heroes who are making history as members of the 169th Fighter Wing.

     You'll notice right away that this edition of the SCANG News is a little different. The following eight-page keepsake pull-out is a tribute to you.

     Whether you were one of the 500-plus Swamp Foxes who went downrange this summer or a hardworking member of the home team who kept our Aerospace Control Alert mission running 24/7 and conducted the home station flying that fed the fight, you are to be commended.

     In August, this wing completed the second of two highly successful and truly historic Air and Space Expeditionary Force rotations. The stand-alone, 120-day, 18-jet deployment you've just concluded is absolutely unprecedented. As always, the men and women of the 169th are breaking ground, setting the bar high and living up to our storied motto ... Semper Primus.

     Meanwhile, at home, your families and your civilian employers also were making selfless contributions to the mission. The sacrifices they endured for the sake of this wing's enormous impact on the other side of the world are invaluable and deeply appreciated.

     Every member of the McEntire team had a hand in fulfilling our largest AEF tasking since Operation Desert Shield. And hundreds of you laid it all on the line.

     Your teammates here at home are aware you were serving in a true combat environment and that your successful efforts have resulted in progress that many Americans will perhaps never understand or appreciate. Know that your leaders at the highest levels of the South Carolina National Guard, the ANG and the USAF, your friends, families and McEntire wingmen understand and appreciate your good work.

     I am proud of all of each member of this world class organization. Congratulations on a job well done.