Celebrating our 'Rock Stars'

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. -- Today, through our annual awards ceremony, we celebrate a year of extraordinary achievements and accomplishments at both the individual and unit level. 

The theme of tonight's 2007 Annual Awards Banquet is "I am an American Airman ... and I will not fail" and it's a terrific testimony to our nominees and their units. It's fitting since we have answered the call to service for our nation and, for the most part, decided not to seek individual recognition. Our nominees represent the best in all of us. 

Tonight we honor the best of the best for Base; our "Rock Stars," if you will. Each nominee has displayed a unique variety of skills and talents to be selected by their units but all have three common characteristics that set them apart ... discipline, determination, and dedication. 

Our service survives on discipline; it's the foundation for trust and respect in our chain of command and it's required of both leaders and followers. Determination is the unwavering commitment we call on to finish our task, objective, goal, or mission. It's what keeps us going when it would be easier to quit. 

And, each of our nominees displays dedication. They display dedication to protect our
country, our way of life, and our future; to place mission priorities above personal interests and satisfaction; and to be a part of the greatest air force in the world. We honor individuals tonight but we celebrate our success as a unit, too. 

So, when you see someone being recognized, remember they didn't do it alone. We all work together as a team. We make sacrifices together, occasionally grieve together, win together, and always stick together. 

Congratulations nominees and Team Little Rock ... combat airlift!