AETC chaplain team takes closer look at Goodfellow

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Ethan Sherwood
  • 17th Training Wing Public Affairs

Air Education and Training Command’s chaplain and religious affairs senior enlisted leader visited Goodfellow Dec. 1.

Col. Donnette Boyd, AETC command chaplain, and Chief Master Sgt. Sadie Chambers, AETC religious affairs SEL, traveled to every AETC base to personally meet with the leaders, chapel team and students to ensure the students had appropriate resources for their spiritual health.

Boyd and Chambers met one-on-one with each member of the chapel staff and spoke with 17th Training Wing leaders about the resources available to the students.

“I wanted to get boots on the ground,” said Boyd. “I wanted to see how the Airmen live and what their needs are. I wanted to see what their resources were and we couldn’t do that effectively without coming here.”

The team experienced the amenities of the Crossroads Student Center and what it offered to Goodfellow’s student population. From a movie room and a full kitchen, to video games and music, the Crossroads is a staple of the chapel team’s efforts on Goodfellow.

They were given a tour of the 312th Training Squadron, learning about special instruments training, and participated in fire protection training by rappelling down a wall.

Boyd and Chambers also observed one of the resiliency tactics of Goodfellow members, bringing dogs from a local non-profit organization as part of their program. The program is focused on bringing dogs and service members together and giving the students a chance to connect with the dogs.

 “Watching students light up as they’re learning new things, while they’re being challenged and tested and then seeing their stress melt away while holding a rescue puppy is extremely gratifying for us,” Chambers said. “This visit gave us a closer look at how our Airmen and members from other services are being cared for in real time.”

Goodfellow’s chapel team was also given the opportunity to speak one-on-one with Boyd and Chambers.

“It is a privilege to have the AETC chapel team visit us, and see our mission and learn how we operate, in order for them to advocate better for us at AETC and higher headquarters,” said Maj. Jeremiah Blackburn, 17th Training Wing chaplain. “It is also great that we can get to know them and they can get to know us and build relationships, mentor our team and offer pastoral care for our team who takes care of others. It connects us to the larger Air Force chaplain corps community.”