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Air Force birthday is an opportunity to recognize 62 years of success

Gen. Arthur J. Lichte, Air Mobility Command commander

Gen. Arthur J. Lichte, Air Mobility Command commander

SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, lll. -- On Sept. 18, 1947, our Air Force became a separate branch of the military. Since then our unequalled accomplishments have helped provide a beacon of hope for men, women, and children all over the world. 

Throughout our command's rich history, we have evolved from Air Transportation Command to Air Mobility Command, which now encompasses airlift, air refueling, aeromedical evacuation, and everything required to support these core competencies. 
During this transition, the United States Air Force and its mobility component have played a vital role in our Nation's defense and to providing relief to those in need around the world. 

The Air Force's birthday is an ideal time to celebrate this heritage and the people that have made and continue to make it all possible. During the Berlin Airlift, our veteran Airmen delivered 2.2 million tons of cargo to a city desperately in need. Today, our AMC, Air Force Reserve Command and Air National Guard Airmen continue this honorable tradition as they work together to achieve unprecedented results around the globe. 

Our success does come at a price as evidenced by the many sacrifices of our Airmen and their families. While our people work long hours and endure time away from home, their families remain steadfast in providing unyielding support and care for our personnel as they make history every day. 

Every member is vital to the continued success of the Air Force and AMC. Commanders and supervisors must continue to promote safety awareness and accident prevention. It is imperative that everyone be a good wingman to family and friends. Many of the Airmen who are no longer with us might still be alive today had a friend or loved one intervened in their time of need. 

Take time on Sept. 18 to remember and recognize the superior contributions our Air Force has made to this great nation. Also take time to remember the sacrifices that Airmen and their families have made to found the freedoms that we enjoy today. For that, I am honored and thankful to be among you wearing the Air Force uniform.