70th anniversary at the Air Force Ball

Guests sing the Air Force song and celebrate the closing of the Air Force Ball held at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. The Air Force Ball focused on tradition and honoring the past and promoting the future. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

Guests sing the Air Force song and celebrate the closing of the Air Force Ball held at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. The Air Force Ball focused on tradition and honoring the past and promoting the future. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

U.S. Air Force retired Lt. Gen. Ronnie Hawkins Jr. attends the Air Force Ball as the guest speaker at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. Hawkins spoke about his desire to have the Air Force traditions and culture honored in future generations. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

U.S. Air Force retired Lt. Gen. Ronnie Hawkins Jr. attends the Air Force Ball as the guest speaker at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. Hawkins spoke about his desire to have the Air Force traditions and culture honored in future generations. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

Air Force tradition is to have the oldest and the youngest service member cut the cake during the Air Force Ball held at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017.  The honor went to U.S. Air Force retired Col. Charlie Powell who was the oldest member and the youngest was Airman Hannah Guthrie, 315th student. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

Air Force tradition is to have the oldest and the youngest service member cut the cake during the Air Force Ball held at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. The honor went to U.S. Air Force retired Col. Charlie Powell who was the oldest member and the youngest was Airman Hannah Guthrie, 315th student. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

The Air Force Ball addresses the topic of breaking barriers and paid tribute to U.S. Air Force retired Maj. Gen. Norma Brown, prior base commander, at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. In honor of her service, the Goodfellow headquarters building was named after her. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

The Air Force Ball addresses the topic of breaking barriers and paid tribute to U.S. Air Force retired Maj. Gen. Norma Brown, prior base commander, at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. In honor of her service, the Goodfellow headquarters building was named after her. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

The Honor Guard sets the Prisoners of War / Missing in Action table at the Air Force ball at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. The table is full of special symbols to remind us of those lost in service. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

The Honor Guard sets the Prisoners of War / Missing in Action table at the Air Force ball at the McNease Convention Center in San Angelo, Texas, Sept. 15, 2017. The table is full of special symbols to remind us of those lost in service. (U.S. Photos by Airman Zachary Chapman/Released)

SAN ANGELO, Texas --

The Goodfellow community celebrated the Air Force’s 70th birthday and honored the traditions of old during the Air Force Ball, located at the McNease Convention Center Sept. 15.

The festivities started off with the social hour. The honor guard opened with the posting of the colors and Patriotic Blue sang “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

The toasts recognized our flag, the President of the United States and several more. Once the toasts were completed, everyone was quiet for the Prisoners of War / Missing in Action ceremony.

Honor Guard set up the POW/MIA table in remembrance of those lost or missing brothers and sisters in arms. All elements of the table have a meaning, to include the white table cloth draped over the table to the wine glass left upside down. The master of ceremony explained each item and their meanings concluding with a toast.

A video showcased the advances of the Air Force throughout its 70 years and the achievements of Goodfellow Air Force Base.

Honors of cutting the Air Force cake went to the oldest and the youngest attendees. The oldest member was Retired Col. Charlie Powell, while the youngest was Airman Hannah Guthrie, 315th student.

“It is a genuine honor,” said Guthrie. “Honestly, it leaves me speechless, and as young as I am, all I want to do is learn more about the Air Force and grow in the Air Force.”

Retired Lt. Gen. Ronnie Hawkins Jr. was the guest speaker and shared his experiences that helped form his view of an Air Force to be proud of. Hawkins spoke on the importance of the Oath of Enlistment and how remembering our traditions and protocol helps to build a better Air Force.

“If you think of this as a job, you need to get out,” said Hawkins. “People expect more out of us and deserve more. After all, we are here to defend them.”

The ball showcased many of the Air Force traditions, ranging from POW/ MIA ceremonies to celebrating old and new generations with the cake cutting. Each celebration serves as a foundation towards building a stronger future by remembering the past.

“Tradition is everything and we continue to hold that tradition and that is what these types of events do,” said Master Sgt. Anthony Vigil, 17th Training Support Squadron.