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AMC logistics director visits Fairchild

Master Sgt. Dustin Garneau shows Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins part of a KC-135 Stratotanker that had been brought in for repair Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Hawkins is the Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, his visit included a tour of the hydraulics shop from Garneau, who is the 92nd Maintenance Squadron NCO in charge of aircraft hydraulics. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Master Sgt. Dustin Garneau shows Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins part of a KC-135 Stratotanker that had been brought in for repair Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Hawkins is the Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, his visit included a tour of the hydraulics shop from Garneau, who is the 92nd Maintenance Squadron NCO in charge of aircraft hydraulics. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Master Sgt. Dustin Garneau, 92nd Maintenance Squadron NCO in charge of aircraft hydraulics, shows Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, boom pod baskets during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Hawkins, who is the Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, spoke with Airmen around the base to see what their needs were, so he could plan to assist them at the AMC level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Master Sgt. Dustin Garneau, 92nd Maintenance Squadron NCO in charge of aircraft hydraulics, shows Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, boom pod baskets during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. Hawkins, who is the Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, spoke with Airmen around the base to see what their needs were, so he could plan to assist them at the AMC level. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Kristofer Maynard, 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron firefighter, explains to Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, some of the training firefighters go through during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. One aspect of firefighter training is putting an oxygen tank together and equipping it while blindfolded. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Kristofer Maynard, 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron firefighter, explains to Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, some of the training firefighters go through during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. One aspect of firefighter training is putting an oxygen tank together and equipping it while blindfolded. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, (seen center), speaks with members of the 92nd Security Forces Squadron at the top of the combat arms range during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. The embankment surrounding the range prevents gunfire from escaping the enclosed area. Hawkins visited the security forces squadron, maintenance squadron and the fire department during the tour. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, (seen center), speaks with members of the 92nd Security Forces Squadron at the top of the combat arms range during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. The embankment surrounding the range prevents gunfire from escaping the enclosed area. Hawkins visited the security forces squadron, maintenance squadron and the fire department during the tour. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, crawls through a 16-inch cut out during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. The 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Department put on a demonstration showcasing the training they do, allowing Hawkins to participate in a portion at the end. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, crawls through a 16-inch cut out during a base tour Nov. 7, 2016, at Fairchild Air Force Base, Wash. The 92nd Civil Engineer Squadron Fire Department put on a demonstration showcasing the training they do, allowing Hawkins to participate in a portion at the end. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Taylor Shelton)

FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. -- Brig. Gen. Stacey Hawkins, Air Mobility Command director of logistics, engineering and force protection, traveled to Fairchild Nov. 7, 2016, in order to identify what manner of support the only air refueling wing in the Pacific Northwest is needed to continue its 24/7 mission.

“I’m here because this wing and its mission are a centerpiece in getting the mission accomplished for the Air Force and the nation,” said Hawkins. “I’m hoping to talk and to listen to the Airmen here who see the mission occur every day on the ground.”

Hawkins emphasized the pivotal role Fairchild plays from air refueling to supporting the strategic deterrence mission, and declared his goal was to gather firsthand information from Airmen during his visit. He will use this information at higher headquarters to advocate for granting Fairchild greater resources and to craft improved policies across the Air Force.

“Command has four key focus areas: readiness, growing and developing airmen, modernization and the nuclear mission,” said Hawkins. “In command, we plan out the allocation of our resources carefully and we try to minimize risk by not trading off those things that will cost us combat capability.”

While Hawkins’ visit was aimed at working with base units in need, he also seized the opportunity to spend time visiting younger Airmen. The general gave leadership advice and personally answered their questions and concerns about serving in the military.

“You have great Airmen here, let’s try to keep them. We cannot afford to have any Airmen walk completely away from the military profession,” Hawkins said. “Let’s try to keep everyone because we will need them going forward.”

Hawkins made a point to approach every Airman and officer he came across, emphasizing the importance command-level leaders placed on junior military members.

“Every person I’ve met in my short time here has been bright-eyed and optimistic,” said Hawkins. “I’d like to personally thank everyone here for all that they do.”

Hawkins spoke with NCOs and commanders about developing solutions to keep the mission-critical components of Fairchild’s operation running around the clock.

“Leaders come out and actually get to see Airmen and they say, “I got it, I see it now,” and that stays with them,” said Col. Ryan Samuelson, 92nd Air Refueling Wing commander. “Seeing and doing the work alongside Airmen here will stick with them more than any amount of people telling them about it.”