Base Honor Guard recognized
By Staff Sgt Sherree Grebenstein, 167th Airlift Wing
/ Published August 10, 2009
MARTINSBURG, W.Va. -- Members of the 167th Airlift Wing's Base Honor Guard were recognized Saturday afternoon for their efforts in support of the West Virginia Veterans Jobs Fair and Business Opportunities Summit held at the Martinsburg Veterans Administration Medical center in late June.
Plaques of appreciation were presented by Cy Kammeier, commander of Chapter 646, Military Order of the Purple Heart, and Richard Seeley, department commander of the West Virginia Military Order of the Purple Heart.
Tech Sgt. Heather Wright, Tech Sgt. Will Stuller, Staff Sgt. Glenn Macher and Staff Sgt. Nic Krukowski were honored for providing a color guard at the event. Lindsey Taylor also received a plaque of appreciation for singing the national anthem during the opening ceremony at the job fair and business opportunities summit.
"It is a great occasion to be recognized by your organizations," said Maj. Paul A. Henry, officer-in-charge for the Base Honor Guard.
Henry said those tapped to serve in wing's small elite element are "the crème of the crop of the base."
Those who serve in the Base Honor Guard put service before self, he said.
Henry said the Base Honor Guard often meets obligations "at a last minute's notice."
"It's about the family we recognize," he said of the Honor Guard assigned to military funeral details. "They sacrifice for the love of country, duty and honor."
More than 20 Airmen at the base in Martinsburg are members of the Honor Guard which serves as a color guard for functions, performs in parades and participates in military funeral details.
"It is a sacrifice, but a small one compared to those they are honoring," said Col. Roger L. Nye, commander of the 167th Airlift Wing.
"You folks honor not only the fallen, but our wing, the Air Force and Department of Defense," Nye told the Base Honor Guard prior to awarding them his commander's coin of excellence.
Otis Batten, a veterans' employment representative from Work Force West Virginia, told Airmen from the 167th Airlift Wing who gathered for the plaque presentation ceremony that the number of deployments that unit members have made into harms' way has not gone unnoticed.
"We all appreciate everything you do every day," Batten said.
Wright said those who serve with the Base Honor Guard don't do so for the recognition, honor or praise.
"It's not for us to have the spotlight on us," she said.
But when such an occasion did arise on Saturday the Honor Guard met it graciously.
"I'm very proud of them and everything they do," said Senior Master Sgt. David W. Stevens, noncommissioned officer-in-charge of the Base Honor Guard at the 167th Airlift Wing.