Wing commander sends holiday greetings

EIELSON AIR FORCE BASE, Alaska -- As 2006 winds down, Lisa and I and my family would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for all your efforts in making Eielson Air Force Base the best place to live and work in our Air Force and to wish all of you Happy Holidays, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

It's been an honor and a privilege to work alongside each and every one of you over our first year! The feats that you have accomplished this year, from taking the fight to the enemy in the Global War on Terror to fine tuning operations at our home station and excelling during our Unit Compliance Inspection, have been truly remarkable.

You've persevered through some very tough times with the Base Realignment and Closure being implemented, Sprucewood homes being closed, more cuts in both our military and civilian force structure and a tightening budget. It has been absolutely amazing how each and every one of you - from the military members to our civilians to our family members - continue to meet these and many other demands and challenges. Thank you!!!

Many of you have been deployed in support of GWOT throughout the year, and indeed many more will find themselves apart from their families this holiday season.
For those deployed in harm's way, and also for those here at home keeping the mission going, our thoughts and prayers are with you.

As we look at our history, we pause to reflect on the contributions of our men and women throughout the years to our nation and to freedom throughout the world. In 1775, a "shot heard 'round the world" ushered in a new era. It sparked a fight for freedom that produced the greatest testament to the human spirit in the history of man - a nation so committed to the blessings of peace, hope and liberty that it sent its best sons and daughters into harm's way to keep the flame of freedom burning for all mankind. Preserving liberty always has and will continue to require tremendous personal sacrifice.

I thank each of you for your service and dedication to securing the freedoms of this great nation and other nations. Your nation is profoundly grateful for your service to our country. People all over the world are grateful for your service. And as we celebrate this holiday season, may all of you find comfort and joy knowing you are have brought the light of peace to others less fortunate.

Please take some time over the next couple of weeks to pause and reflect on all of your accomplishments, spend quality time with your families and re-energize for the upcoming year. The same challenges we have faced in 2006 will be with us in 2007. But we have no doubts you will all step back up to the plate and continue to hit homeruns.
You are the best!!

Lisa and I truly wish you a Happy and Safe Holiday Season and a very Peaceful New Year. Thank you so much for what you do for our nation, our military, and Eielson Air Force Base and the communities of the Interior of Alaska. Happy Holidays!