Lest We Forget
By Airman 1st Class Zachary Chapman, 17th Training Wing Public Affairs
/ Published September 10, 2018
SAN ANGELO, Texas --
This year’s Air Force Ball was themed ‘lest we forget,’ focusing on the 100 year anniversary of World War I and the heritage of Lt. John Goodfellow and the base, hosted at the McNease Convention Center Sept. 8.
While themes change, traditions remain the same.
The event started with a social hour, posting of the colors by the honor guard and AF Band of the West sang “The Star-Spangled Banner,” followed by the formal toasts.
A new tradition was proposed by retired Air Force Col. Charles Powell during the formal toasts.
“Tonight we will assign Lt. Goodfellow his call-sign, for his heavenly flight his call-sign will be, ‘Warrior one,” said Powell. “Each subsequent Air Force Ball, the commander and his staff, will choose another warrior. The heavenly flight’s motto is simple; fly, fight, win.”
Following the toasts the honor guard prepared the POW/MIA table in remembrance of lost or missing brothers and sister in arms.
The guest speaker for the event was Lt. Gen. VeraLinn Jamieson, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance deputy chief of staff. She spoke on why the centennial and being invited to Goodfellow Air Force Base was personal for her.
“I look back on the 100 year celebration of the ‘war to end all wars,’ it’s extremely important to me because my grandmother fought in WW I,” said Jamieson. “My grandmother was decorated by France for valor and actions in WW I. She was a nurse with the Red Cross and she was stationed with Smedley Butler and led a charge through the trenches on one of the successive attacks that helped save an entire platoon. It is extremely memorial to me to celebrate John Goodfellow, a fellow WW I hero, because it allows me to spend some time in thought and connection to my grandmother.”
During the event, Tech. Sgt. Dennis Bugerenko, 17th Training Group training evaluator, dressed in a WW I pilot uniform while Master Sgt. Francisco Cavazos, 316th Training Squadron flight chief, wore a “doughboy” uniform.
“The uniform that I am wearing today is the World War I doughboy uniform,” said Cavazos. “The two most popular uniforms during that era were the doughboy and then a pilot and Sergeant Bugerenko decided to wear the pilot uniform. The theme for tonight was World War I anniversary and tracing back our heritage and lineage. I just wanted to pay homage to our tradition. I don’t think it matters if you are an airman, master sergeant or chief, if you have an opportunity to provide that kind of respect to your traditions you gotta take advantage of it.“