Are you ready - personally?

Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark. -- What a great exercise! We demonstrated our team's ability to respond to real-world taskings, prepare to launch hundreds to support the nation's on-going war effort and validated our ability to survive and operate in a hostile environment. Well done!

Now ask yourself: Are you ready - personally? Recent events highlighted the need for each person to be ready for any family or personal emergency, and not just ready for your war-time mission. Support for the family while the warriors are away is a key component of our war-time readiness. 

An Airman who is distracted with pay issues, family matters or difficulties at home while he or she is deployed will be a liability to the team around them. When bullets are flying, your head has to be in the game.

Additionally, if tragedy strikes and you should happen to fall, will your family be ready to carry on? Here is a short list of items that each Airman, deployable or not, should review and update regularly:

1. Will - A good will removes huge burdens from the grieving family. Your spouse should also have an updated will. Who will take care of the kids in your absence?

2. Emergency data locator (vRED) - Who should be contacted in case of emergency or tragedy?

3. SGLI and other insurance - Is it going to go to the right people?

4. Financial data and files - Does your spouse or beloved know how to pay the bills in your absence?

5. Home care - Who will mow the lawn, shovel the walks and change the oil when you are gone?

Certainly this list isn't exhaustive, but these basics are critical to creating a good family care plan for any contingency. Your readiness extends beyond the work place. Now is a good time to get started or to review your current arrangements. Contact your supervisor or first sergeant if you have more questions.