Showing posts with label Tyndall Air Force Base. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tyndall Air Force Base. Show all posts

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Will Senate back building the wall or rebuilding military bases?

Camp Lejeune is still a mess 6 months after Hurricane Florence. Where's the money for repairs?

NBC News
By Courtney Kube and Mosheh Gains
March 30, 2019

The Marine Corps' top general says one "negative factor" delaying repairs is the diversion of resources to the military mission at the U.S.-Mexico border.

CAMP LEJEUNE, N.C. — More than six months after Hurricane Florence ravaged North Carolina, hundreds of buildings at Camp Lejeune and two other nearby Marine Corps installations remain frozen in time, with walls still caved in and roofs missing.

The Marines say they need $3.6 billion to repair the damage to more than 900 buildings at Camp Lejeune, Marine Corps Air Station New River, and Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point caused by the storm and catastrophic flooding in its aftermath. And while they have torn down soggy, moldy walls, put tarps on roofs and moved Marines into trailers, so far they have not received a penny from the federal government to fix the damage.

Now the Marine Corps' top officer is warning that readiness at Camp Lejeune — home to one third of the Corps' total combat power — is degraded and "will continue to degrade given current conditions." In a recent memo to Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, Commandant Gen. Robert Neller cited, among other "negative factors," the diversion of resources to the border, where the Trump administration has sent active-duty troops to patrol and plans to use military funding to pay for a wall.
"Mister Secretary, I am asking for your assistance," wrote Neller in his memo, his second this year requesting that Spencer push Congress to provide more funds. "The hurricane season is only three months away, and we have Marines, Sailors, and civilians working in compromised structures."

Neller wrote that the lack of the money needed for repairs, and unexpected expenses like the U.S. military mission at the southern border, are "imposing unacceptable risk to Marine Corps combat readiness and solvency."
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But it is not just Camp Lejeune 

Air Force Needs Almost $5 Billion To Recover Bases From Hurricane, Flood Damage
The U.S. Air Force says it needs $4.9 billion in new funding over the next two and a half years to cover the costs of rebuilding two air bases hit by natural disasters.
About one-third of Offutt Air Force Base, in eastern Nebraska, was underwater earlier this month as flooding hit large swaths of the Midwest. And Tyndall Air Force Base in the Florida Panhandle was hit hard by Hurricane Michael in October.
The Air Force is asking for $1.2 billion in supplemental funding for fiscal year 2019 and $3.7 billion for fiscal years 2020 and 2021. Congress would need to approve the funding.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Eglin Air Force Base supporting Airman after 3 year old son was murdered

Eglin Air Force Base community rallies around airman after her son's murder

The Northwest Florida Daily News
Published: March 18, 2019

EGLIN AFB (Tribune News Service) — The full range of Eglin Air Force Base resources are being marshaled around a relatively new airman whose husband killed their 3-year-old son and then attempted to kill himself last Friday.

Airman 1st Class Darrelly Franken, 38, had been assigned to Tyndall Air Force Base, but was reassigned to Eglin AFB in December, in the wake of Hurricane Michael, according to Eglin spokesman Andy Bourland. The October hurricane scored a direct hit on Tyndall as it roared across the eastern Florida panhandle on Oct. 10, all but destroying the installation.

Bourland wasn't certain in a Monday interview, but said he believed the home where Franken and her husband, 61-year-old Frederick Franken, had lived with their young son, Frederick Franken Jr., while stationed at Tyndall was destroyed by the hurricane.

On the afternoon of March 15, Darelly Franken arrived at the family's home to find her husband and son on the floor. Shortly afterward, Okaloosa County sheriff's deputies responded to the residence, according to witnesses. Details of the incident have not yet been released by the Sheriff's Office.

The child was pronounced dead at the scene, and the medical examiner's office was scheduled to perform an autopsy on Monday.

Frederick Franken was listed in critical condition at Fort Walton Beach Medical Center on Friday, and had improved to fair condition as of Monday morning, according to hospital spokeswoman Denise Kendust. Frederick Franken is not in military service, Bourland said.
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Sunday, February 3, 2019

$3 Billion for repairs to Tyndall Air Force Base

Air Force plans to spend $3 billion to rebuild Florida base

Associated Press
February 1, 2019

Tornado damages Tyndall Air Force Base, Photo date: 1/21/2019 / Courtesy: WJHG

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) — Air Force officials say they are committed to spending $3 billion during the next five years to rebuild a Florida base heavily damaged by Hurricane Michael.

The assistant secretary of the Air Force for installations, environment and energy announced the Tyndall Air Force Base reconstruction plans Thursday to local officials in Florida's Panhandle.

The News Herald report s Assistant Secretary John Henderson said the plans will be submitted to Congress this spring.

Bay County officials said the effort likely will create up between 4,000 and 5,000 jobs.
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Thursday, October 18, 2018

Veterans in other news October 18, 2018

Actors and athletes have agents to help them find work. Now vets with PTSD can too.

Staff Sgt. Robert Simonovich takes cover during a combined mission with the Iraqi army in Lutafiyah, Iraq, on April 16, 2007. Simonovich was wounded days after this photo was taken, and later spent years in therapy dealing with post-traumatic stress from the injury. (Staff Sgt. Martin Newton/Army)
WASHINGTON — After Bob Simonovich’s post-traumatic stress disorder left him anxious around large groups, loud noises and unpredictable environments, he was unsure what type of career he’d be able to handle in his post-military life.So his therapists lined up a job for him with a baseball team.“I loved baseball my whole life,” said Simonovich, a former Army staff sergeant injured in a bomb blast in Iraq 11 years ago. “But when I got back, I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to go to a game again. The crowds, the fireworks, it’s just something I didn’t think I’d be able to do. read more here

Navy veteran, father of 3 killed in Norfolk shooting

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) — The Norfolk Police Department said Ernesto Crespo, a father of three children and a Navy veteran, was killed in a shooting Friday on West Ocean Avenue.Crespo's coworker and friend Ernie Santini said Crespo was with his children when he was shot. Norfolk Police tracked a suspect's car to a house 5 minutes away from the shooting. After a prolonged standoff, police officers found another man, Robert Dabney, dead inside that home. read more here

Many Families Will Never Return to Tyndall After Hurricane, Officials Say

The same cannot be said for base housing. Thomas said all 867 homes sustained damage, most of them with roofs torn off...Beginning Wednesday, and continuing through Oct. 21, Tyndall families who evacuated before Hurricane Michael came ashore as a Category 4 storm will be allowed back onto the base to survey the damage to their homes and take away valuables, the officials said. read more here

Pair of Navy Helicopters Collide on Runway in Japan

The mishap was labeled Class A, which means it resulted in at least $2 million or more in damages.
"There is an investigation ongoing, which will reveal the extent of the damage and what the crews were doing on the ramp," said Cmdr. Ron Flanders, a spokesman for Naval Air Forces. read more here

Three Troops Wounded in Suicide Bombing at Bagram Airfield

The bomber attacked a patrol, a U.S. military spokesman with Resolute Support in Kabul said. The nationality of the three wounded service members was not provided. The Taliban in a statement claimed responsibility for the attack. read more here

Vets group calls on DOD, VA to help stop fake news targeting veterans, troops

WASHINGTON – One year ago, Vietnam Veterans of America discovered a Facebook page was using its name to spread disinformation to nearly 200,000 followers. Facebook disabled the site at VVA’s request, citing violations to intellectual property.The incident sparked an effort at VVA, a congressionally chartered veterans service organization, to find more social media pages that target veterans and servicemembers with sensationalized news and hyper-partisan political content. read more here

Monday, October 15, 2018

Do not forget military families caught by Hurricane Michael

Lawmakers vow to rebuild damaged Air Force base

FOX 13 News
Jim Turner
October 15, 2018
Base command at Tyndall last week called the hit from Michael “widespread catastrophic damage,” with every structure damaged, including hangars where planes that could not be flown out --- due to maintenance or safety reasons --- had been sheltered.

TALLAHASSEE (NSF) - Northwest Florida’s Tyndall Air Force Base, where pilots train to fly the F-22 stealth fighter, won’t be abandoned because of major damage it sustained in Hurricane Michael, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson vowed Monday.

Speaking to reporters at Tallahassee International Airport, Nelson sought to dismiss growing concerns that the storm-battered base outside Panama City will follow the path of what had been Homestead Air Force Base, which was heavily damaged by Hurricane Andrew in 1992 and subsequently became an Air Force Reserve base.

“I think that fear is unfounded,” Nelson said. “As a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I can say that Tyndall will be rebuilt, and it will be an example of a modern U.S. Air Force base. That is because it is critically located right next to one of our greatest national assets, the Air Force Eastern Gulf Test and Training Range, which is the largest testing and training range for the United States military in the world.”

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Trump gets bird’s-eye view of Tyndall, devastated Florida communities

Associated Press
Deb Reichmann and Darlene Superville
October 15, 2018

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, right, looks on as President Donald Trump talks with reporters after arriving at Eglin Air Force Base to visit areas affected by Hurricane Michael, Monday. (Evan Vucci/AP)

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (AP) — President Donald Trump got a bird’s-eye view Monday of Florida communities left in ruins by Hurricane Michael, including houses without roofs, a toppled water tower and 18-wheel trucks scattered in a parking lot during a nearly hour-long helicopter tour of portions of the Panhandle.

Trump initially saw uprooted trees and houses with blue tarps covering damaged roofs after his helicopter lifted from Eglin Air Force Base near Valparaiso. But the severity of the damage worsened significantly as Trump approached Mexico Beach, a town of about 1,000 people that was nearly wiped off the map in a direct hit from the hurricane and its 155 mph winds last week.

Many of the houses in Mexico Beach had no roofs. In some cases, only the foundations were left standing. The water tower lay on its side and 18-wheelers were scattered in a parking lot like a child's toys.

Trump also saw Tyndall Air Force Base, which was heavily damaged by the storm.
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 JOINT BASE McGUIRE-DIX-LAKEHURST — More than a thousand military families were without power in the last week — many for nine days and counting — after a power surge destroyed an electrical substation. The Oct. 4 surge, which caused the substation equipment to erupt in flames, knocked out electricity to 1,087 homes on the McGuire Air Force Base. The length of the outage rivals the blackouts that parts of New Jersey experienced after Hurricane Irene, Superstorm Sandy and the nor'easter storms last winter. read more here

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Gulf Coast VA Town Hall Hears From Veterans

Veterans came armed and ready to tackle VA problems
Pensacola News Journal
Marketta A. Davis
Staff Writer
September 9, 2014

They may be veterans, but they're definitely still fighting a war.

The Joint Ambulatory Care Center on U.S. 98 was ground zero for the Gulf Coast VA town hall event Monday night, housing more than 70 Gulf Coast area vets who brought their notes, questions and concerns with the VA.

While many veterans voiced a genuine thanks and appreciation for the work the Pensacola VA clinic provides to the community, others had quite a difference in opinion.

Paul Goodwin, a 79-year-old Navy vet, said the problem for him wasn't in the services or treatment the VA provides, rather it was in its growing population.

"I have no complaints for the VA here or at Tyndall Air Force Base, where I've been seen," said Goodwin.

"I just think the VA is growing too fast."

With the recent scandals over delayed care, many veterans at the town hall felt like the VA could use an extra hand in doctors, facilities and claims services members to compensate for the growing numbers of veterans in Pensacola.
read more here

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Military dads balance service to country with love of family

Military dads balance service to country with love of family
Times Record News, Wichita Falls, Texas
By Claire Kowalick
Published: June 15, 2014

Meeting his daughter, Quinn, for the first time, Capt. Kevin McKay returns from a six-month deployment with the 117th Air Control Squadron. His wife, Ariel, gave birth March 21, 2014. Quinn's poster says it all, "Hurry Daddy, I've been waiting my whole life to meet you!"

WICHITA FALLS, Texas — “One team, one fight.” This phrase, often heard around the military, could be equally applied to the challenge of being a loving father with a military career.

About 60 percent of enlisted personnel and 70 percent of officers in the military are married and about 50 percent have children.

While some civilian jobs require travel, few require it with the frequency and length of time as being in the military.

“It’s a mixed bag,” said Air National Guard Major Rusty Brinkley, “While I’m able to provide for them and do something that I have wanted to do since growing up, the trips away are the most difficult part.”

Brinkley, formerly of Burkburnett, now stationed at Tyndall AFB in Panama City, Florida, said he estimates he has been on tours of duty away from his wife, Tia, for about 45 percent of their 11 year marriage.
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