The Year in Review: Looking Back on 2010 at Hancock Field Air National Guard Base

  • Published
  • By Capt. Anthony L. Bucci
  • 174th Fighter Wing/PAO
There is an old adage that goes "The more things change the more they stay the same" and nowhere is that more apparent than on Hancock Field Air National Guard Base.

"As we approach the holiday season and a new year, I am not only amazed how quickly this year flew by but more impressed with the sheer number of incredible accomplishments earned by this wing. 2010 will soon be gone on the calendar but will long be remembered as the year of the Conversion and Deployments", said Col. Kevin W. Bradley 174th Fighter Wing Commander.

So before we close this year out, let's take a look back at 2010 and all of the challenges faced by you "Citizen Airmen".

The 174th Fighter Wing, 152nd Air Operations Group and the 274th Air Support Operations Squadron continue to evolve, grow and change as the years continues to blend into one another, while the mission continues to be accomplished.

This past year the 174th Fighter Wing flew, fixed and supported more than 2,500 F-16, RC-26B and MQ-9 hours, including combat, while HANGB deployed more than 275 Airmen to eight different countries.

The members of HANGB have directly supported operations in Central, European, Northern, Pacific and Southern commands, while maintaining a strong community presence with the State Fair, Honor Guard, Salvation Army Christmas Distribution Day, speaking engagements and countless other events.

After 22 years of flying the F-16 Fighting Falcon, affectionately known as the Viper, the last of the unit's F-16 left the airfield on the 6th of March, while the MQ-9 Reaper achieved sustained combat operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The 274th ASOS had two Bronze Star Medal recipients recognized this past year, they were Technical Sgt.'s Cole P. Shebat and Patrick (last name withheld by unit member) two Joint Terminal Air Controllers who served extended deployments in support of OEF. The 274th ASOS has been deployed in support of OEF for the majority of 2010 finally coming coming home in December just in time for the holidays.

On April 10th the 152nd AOG had a change of command ceremony as Col. Kevin J. Brown passed the reigns of command to Col. (Sel.) Mark D. Murphy.

A memorial service was held on May 2nd for Staff Sgt Linda Monelavongsy of the 174FW Communications Flight who lost her life in a motorcycle accident on April 20th during Bike Week in Corolla, N.C.

On May 5th General Craig R. McKinley, the chief of the National Guard Bureau the National Guard's senior leader visited HANGB getting a tour of the facility concluding with lunch with the men and women of HANGB.

HANGB also hosted two National Guard Bureau Conferences; the first was the Northeast Regional Public Affairs Conference on May 25th featuring Mr. Jack Harrison the National Guard Bureau's Director of Public Affairs.

On the 4th and 5th of June HANGB hosted the Air National Guard Council of the Judge Advocate General of the Air Force for one of its national meetings featuring Maj. Gen. Andrew F. Turley, the ANG Assistant to the TJAG and Chair of the Council.

On the 12th of September HANGB dedicated the F-86 Sabre to the newly-established Hancock Field Air Park during a brief commander's call in the main hangar. This legacy aircraft from the unit's proud history is the first aircraft to be dedicated to the newly-established air park with more HANGB legacy aircraft to follow.

October 9th marked the first Hancock Field Family Readiness Program 5K Run, which was held at Onondaga Lake Park with a total of 206 runners and walkers supporting the efforts of the unit and their families.

December 22nd members of HANGB will be at the Oncenter Convention Center in downtown Syracuse to bring hope to those families facing tough times during this holiday season. With more than 4,000 families from the Syracuse area experiencing hard times during this holiday season members from HANGB will once again answer the call of the Christmas Bureau Salvation Army's distribution day.

2010 was a remarkable year that tested the men and women of HANGB and 2011 will no doubt pose additional challenges, but as always HANGB will be up to the challenges that lie ahead.