Chief Lathrop Retires after 35 years

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Barbara Olney
  • 174th Attack Wing

Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, Syracuse, NY -- On June 5, 2022, Chief Master Sergeant David M. Lathrop retired after 35 years in a ceremony held at the base.

In May 1987, Chief Lathrop enlisted in the New York Air National Guard at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base in Syracuse, New York. Chief Lathrop completed the initial Aircraft Fuel System apprentice course at Chanute AFB, IL in October 1987.

His first duty assignment was working as an A-10 aircraft fuel systems maintenance technician with the 174th Tactical Fighter Wing of the New York Air National Guard in Syracuse. Chief Lathrop was later hired as an air technician for the 174th maintenance squadron as an F-16 aircraft electrical systems specialist in December 1989.

Chief Lathrop’s background includes maintaining multiple mission design series (MDS) to include A-10A Thunderbolt II, F-16A/B/C/D Fighting Falcon and MQ-9A Reaper aircraft.

Previous positions Chief Lathrop has held include aircraft structural maintenance supervisor, fabrication element supervisor, non-destructive inspection (NDI) specialist, munitions element supervisor, aircrew flight equipment supervisor, force support squadron superintendent, inspector general superintendent and quality assurance superintendent. His most recent title was superintendent of the 174th maintenance group.

When asked what one of his most memorable moments was, Lathrop said, “Deploying to Saudi Arabia in 1991 for Operation Desert Shield / Storm with my father, Senior Master Sgt. Mack Lathrop and my brother, Master Sgt Tom Lathrop. It was an amazing experience.” 

One message he would like to leave to the Airmen currently serving and to future Airmen is to ” Get out of your comfort zone, challenge yourself, diversify your experience and expertise in order to be ready for increased responsibility."