F.E. WARREN AIR FORCE BASE, Wyo. (AFNS) —
Secretary of the Air Force Frank Kendall and his spouse, Beth Halpern, visited F.E. Warren Air Force Base, in conjunction with Cheyenne Frontier Days, July 21-23.
Kendall visited F.E. Warren to connect with Airmen of the 90th Missile Wing and hear about the quality of life there, speak with city leaders about local challenges and
successes in the community, and to learn about the intercontinental ballistic missile mission and modernization efforts.
“It is an honor to have Secretary Kendall here with us,” said Col. Johnny Galbert, 90th MW commander. “The Mighty Ninety is filled with hard-working, talented Airmen, and I’m excited they get the opportunity to show off their efforts. We appreciate when our senior leaders visit and learn about our mission, especially when they take the time to talk with our most junior Airmen who accomplish the mission every day.”
On his first day, Kendall toured the weapons generation facility and was briefed on the modernized building’s construction progress and capabilities supporting the new LGM-35A Sentinel ICBM weapon system. Following the WGF, Kendall had lunch with the 90th MW and 20th Air Force Airmen. He recognized four Airmen for their outstanding service and spoke with them to hear what was on their minds. After lunch, he participated in a round table discussion with Cheyenne Mayor Patrick Collins and Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Dale Steenbergen about Airmen’s quality of life in the community and schools.
“The town and the base were born in the same year, 1867,” Collins said. “We work together and so we understand how important quality of life is for Airmen here.”
Kendall emphasized the importance of the relationship between the base and the local community and how that will affect their quality of life and work.
“If people feel supported in the community, they are better able to perform their duties at work,” Kendall said.
In addition, Kendall was briefed by 20th AF personnel about the arrival of the new helicopter, the MH-139 Grey Wolf, which will ensure the continuation of a higher level of lethality and readiness while completing the mission.
Kendall also hosted an all-call at the Peacekeeper High Bay, where he recognized four more Airmen for their outstanding service and then spoke on topics such as pay, cancer concerns and quality of life. He opened the floor for questions, resulting in questions from Airmen about BAH rates, recruiting rates, strategic deterrence and modernization impacts.
“I don’t see any fundamental change for how Airmen will operate because of Sentinel,” Kendall said. “People will still be the key link in the chain, and I think Airmen will continue to do what is asked of them to the fullest extent.”
Kendall also visited Cheyenne to act as a grand marshal for CFD. The settlement of Cheyenne began simultaneously with establishing a military camp, now F.E. Warren AFB, at Crow Creek Crossing in 1867. As the grand marshal, Kendall led the CFD Grand Parade and Grand Entry, honoring long-lasting community ties, partnerships, and CFD traditions.
Kendall and his family were also hosted at Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon’s residence with state and city leaders and military leaders from the 90th MW, 20th AF and the Wyoming Guard.
To end his visit to F.E. Warren AFB and Cheyenne, Kendall hosted a commander’s reception dinner at the Trail’s End Event Center. 90th MW wing, group and squadron commanders, senior enlisted leaders and state and city delegates were in attendance. Additionally, Kendall hosted civic leaders from towns throughout the missile field to speak about how modernization efforts will affect their communities.