by Staff Sgt. Danielle Wolf
442nd Fighter Wing Public Affairs
1/18/2011 - WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- Jan. 6, Col. Eric S. Overturf, 442nd Fighter Wing commander, was the guest speaker at the Whiteman Air Force Base - Base Community Council luncheon.
As the guest speaker, Colonel Overturf briefed approximately 150 people from Warrensburg and LaMonte, Mo. - two communities that hundreds of 442nd FW Citizen Airmen reside in.
"Citizen Airmen could not serve their country without the support of their families, employers and local community, so it's important we get to know these people and they know our mission," Colonel Overturf said.
He talked about upcoming events in the 442nd FW, such as Red Flag, an aerial-combat exercise the 303rd Fighter Squadron A-10 Thunderbolt II pilots will participate in at the end of January; a feature on the 442nd FW and A-10 on an upcoming episode of Friends of the NRA: The X-Ring, filmed here earlier this month and scheduled to air on the Outdoor Channel March 27; and the gaining of two more geographically separated units, one at Barksdale AFB, La., and one at Davis-Montham AFB, Ariz. By gaining the final two GSUs, the 442nd FW will control all A-10s in the Air Force Reserve Command - an impressive, yet challenging, feat.
"Bringing all the Air Force Reserve A-10s under the control of the 442nd FW will make it easier to generate and deploy A-10s to support combat tasking," Colonel Overturf said.
After the luncheon, the colonel and his wife had the opportunity to meet various members of the communities and around the base.
The base community council is comprised of more than 350 members representing 18 communities in Missouri. The group meets here monthly. The BCC works closely with the base to plan special events that link the nearby communities with members of the Air Force. Members of the BCC come from a diverse group of business, religious, educational and professional careers. The council has been a part of Team Whiteman for more than 20 years and sponsors events such as fundraiser golf tournaments and the air show.
"My wife, Karla, and I are looking forward to spending time with the BCC and in all the local communities to thank them for their support," Colonel Overturf said.